When I was a kid in Texas, I used to be jealous of some of the megachurches in the area. The one in our small town, which my friends and I fondly referred to as Six Flags Over Jesus, had everything you could think of. There was a McDonald's with a full play area, ball pit included, a Starbucks, a slide as an alternative for kids to go down the stairs, and a full skate park in the back. The auditorium in the church was where the high school held graduation, and I knew on Sundays that the church had a full rock band perform. I thought that was pretty cool compared to the dull hymns that our ward chorister would choose that my dad called, “The Lesser Known Hymns of the Latter-day Saints.”
As I grew up and became aware of EFY music,* that sentiment of wishing our church had a full rock band perform on Sundays faded pretty quickly. By the time I finished my two years as a full-time missionary for the LDS Church, it had been beaten to death more than a few times.
More than once I have described certain music to come out of Utah as glorified EFY music. Now I’m not saying “A Blessing” falls under that category, but I’m not not saying that. And while I haven’t listened to EFY music since my mission, this was definitely the final nail in the coffin of me ever wanting my church to have a band playing more contemporary music during our services (if it wasn't there already).
One thing I have to respect is that I didn’t know you were allowed to say the word “erotica” in an EFY song. I didn’t know Zach had that edginess in him. Say what you will, but being the bad boy of EFY music is kind of hot.
The thing I admire most about Zach, however, is that he still keeps writing and performing music even after a certain playlist curator called his voice the “bargain-bin version of a Bo Burnham song.” If that isn’t dedication and determination to his craft, then I don’t know what is.
If you know the real story behind this song, then you must assume that I am the worst person in the world to say these things. It’s a heartfelt song to his wife about the many difficult hardships they’ve been through and successfully overcome. And while I jest and joke about things that I don’t mean even in the slightest, the one sincere thing in the roast above is Zach’s dedication and determination to whatever it is he puts his mind to, or in the case of this song, his wife and family. Because in the grand scheme of things, it doesn’t matter what other people say, especially if it’s negative. The only thing that matters are those few people beside us at the end of the day.
*I know it’s no longer called EFY, but I can't remember what it's been changed to, nor do I care to look it up.