Crowd shot masthead ApologetiX Logo Keith Haynie plays bassBill Hubauer plays lead guitarJ. Jackson sings leadJimmy Vegas Tanner plays drums
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01.26.24The Stories Behind the Songs on This Single
01.24.24Checking in With ApX Alum Drummer Fred Behanna
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01.19.24Influential Albums: 1346-1352
01.19.24Encouraging Message from Longtime Fan in Oklahoma
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01.12.24The Stories Behind the Songs on This Single
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12.28.232023: A Record-Breaking Record-Making Year
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12.07.23Clues for 2023 Single #25
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11.24.23Influential Albums: 1290-1296
11.24.23Rock Thru the Bible with ApX This Week
11.24.23Clues for 2023 Single #24
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11.16.23Influential Albums: 1283-1289
11.16.23The Stories Behind the Songs on This Single
11.16.23Rock Thru the Bible with ApX This Week
11.12.23This Week's News Bulletin
11.12.23New Single: #1 Hits from '81 & '86
11.09.23Rock Thru the Bible with ApX This Week

Influential Albums: 1248-1254
Fri., Oct. 13. 2023 8:10pm EDT

J. Jackson, lead singer and lyricist for ApologetiX here again.

Here are the latest entries in the "albums that influenced me" series I started writing in May 2020.

Note: Just because an album appears on this list doesn't mean I give it a blanket endorsement. Many of the secular albums on this list are mainly there because they wound up being spoofed by ApologetiX.

1248. WOW 2001 Various Artists
Released on October 24, 2000, WOW 2001 featured 33 tracks. The crown jewel for me on this collection was "God of Wonders" by Caedmon's Call and Third Day. We still sing that song in worship at my church, although the original performers did it exquisitely. Other selections that stuck with me included "Unforgetful You" by Jars of Clay, "Dive" by Steven Curtis Chapman, "This Is Your Time" by Michael W. Smith, "Gather at the River" by Point of Grace, "Shackles (Praise You)" by Mary Mary, "God You Are My God" by Delirious?, and "White Horse" by Earthsuit. There were also four favorites I had on other albums: "Hands and Feet" by Audio Adrenaline, "Beautiful Sound" by Newsboys, "King of Glory" by Third Day, and "The Only One" by Caedmon's Call. One other tune I should mention is "Written on My Heart" by Plus One, a group that was sort of the Christian version of Backstreet Boys and NSYNC. Plus One played right before us at Creation 2000, and I used to joke that the Creation festival folks did that because they wanted to put the boy bands back to back (Everybody in ApologetiX was at least 30 by the time we played Creation, and some of us were well past that point). WOW 2001 went to #36 on the Billboard 200 and sold two million copies. For a complete track listing, go to https://www.discogs.com/master/779830-Various-WOW-2001-The-Years-30-Top-Contemporary-Christian-Artists-And-Hits

1249. Spoofernatural - ApologetiX
The official release date for the sixth ApologetiX LP was November 21, 2000, although we sent out pre-release copies to Christian radio stations the first week of November, and the ones who liked us started playing it immediately. Back then, there were still many individual stations with program directors and on-air personalities who could choose what they wanted to play and didn't have to adhere to a corporate playlist, and God gave us favor with quite a few of them. By that time, Christian bookstores and distributors across the country were stocking our CDs, so we placed our first full-page ad in CCM magazine to promote the new album. The title, Spoofernatural, was a parody of two other albums — both named Supernatural — that had come out in the previous two years (and have already appeared on this list), one by DC Talk (September '98) and the other by Santana (June '99). The first was one of the most-popular Christian LPs of that period, and the second was one of the most-popular mainstream LPs. Since ApologetiX brings together Christian and mainstream music, it seemed fitting that our album's title would comment on those unlikely twins, especially since it included a parody of "Smooth" from Santana's Supernatural. Although Spoofernatural covered music from the 1950s-1999, more than half of the songs were '80s hits. We recorded them during a particularly hectic period of our lives — lots of touring and recording at a time when most of the band members had other jobs. That resulted in some late-night recording sessions ... and vocal strain for me from trying to cram too many songs into those sessions, sandwiched between shows ... so a number of the tracks didn't turn out as polished as I would have liked. Consequently, we've re-recorded eight of them (out of 19) in the years since, and there are still others I'd love to redo. Nevertheless, Spoofernatural remains a fan favorite. It was our last CD with Fred Behanna on drums. Being a bit older than the rest of us and having played in many bands before ApologetiX, he chose to retire. Furthermore, he was no fan of flying, to put it mildly, because of a harrowing experience he'd had on a plane while in the military. We'd already played concerts in Texas and Colorado in 2000 that he'd chosen to drive to while we flew. And 2001 would include three additional trips to Texas plus three to California. Fred played his final concert with us on January 26, 2001, in Kalamazoo MI. We had a special graduation ceremony for him there, complete with diploma. As we always said, Fred was the consummate professional, and he remains a dear friend.

1250. Intermission: The Greatest Hits - DC Talk
In a bit of unintentional irony, the ApologetiX LP Spoofernatural ended up sharing the same release date (November 21, 2000) as DC Talk's follow-up to their Supernatural LP, whose title we'd spoofed. Intermission: The Greatest Hits bypassed the trio's first two LPs in favor of their final three. It featured five tracks from Free at Last (1992), six from Jesus Freak (1995), and two from Supernatural (1998). Also present were two previously released favorites that hadn't appeared before on a DC Talk album — "My Will" (#1 Christian Hit Radio, #1 Christian Adult Contemporary), from the various-artists compilation Exodus (1998), and a cover of Larry Norman's "I Wish We'd All Been Ready" (#40 Christian AC) from the "Jesus Freak" single (1995). One of the tracks culled from Free at Last was actually a remix. The original, "Say the Words," had hit #2 on CHR chart in 1994. Released as single from Intermission, "Say the Words (Now)" hit #1 on the Christian Hit Radio and Christian adult contemporary charts. There were two other brand-new songs, "Chance" and "Sugar Coat It." Neither was released as a single, but I prefer "Sugar Coat It." In addition to that, Intermission also featured the reappearance of Mrs. Morgan from the Jesus Freak album and the debut of her husband, Mr. Morgan, on the amusing interludes "Mr. Morgan (Morgan Act I)" and "Mrs. Morgan (Morgan Act II)." Intermission reached #81 on the Billboard 200 and sold half a million copies.

1251. Now That's What I Call Music! 5 - Various Artists
Once we released our Spoofernatural LP, it was soon time to start thinking about songs for the next ApologetiX project. This is one of the CDs I purchased as source material. Released on November 14, 2000, Now That's What I Call Music! 5 went to #2 on the Billboard 200, with sales of over four million units, which makes it the biggest-selling non-Christmas volume in the entire U.S. Now That's What I Call Music! series. As of September 2023, there were over 200 Now volumes (87 standard, 66 special edition, 15 Christmas, and 34 country). We spoofed two of the tracks on Now 4, "Kryptonite" by Three Doors Down and "Absolutely (Story of a Girl)" by Nine Days, and they became two of our most popular parodies at the time. Other cuts that stuck with me were "It's My Life" by Bon Jovi, "Wonderful" by Everclear, "Back Here" by BBMak, "It's Gonna Be Me" by NSYNC, "Jumpin', Jumpin'" by Destiny's Child, and "Give Me Just One Night (Una Noche)" by 98 Degrees. If we did parodies more in the vein of "Weird Al" Yankovic, we would have done "Give Me Just One Bite (Una Nacho), but I don't think I could eat just one, so that would be disingenuous. Besides, Al had already done a parody of Gerardo's "Rico Suave" called Taco Grande. However, we did eventually do a brief parody of Pseudo Echo's "Funkytown" called "Funky Brown" that talked about taco salad. For a complete listing of the tracks on Now 5, go to
https://www.discogs.com/release/567804-Various-Now-Thats-What-I-Call-Music-5

1252. Greatest Hits - Bob Seger
As Bob Seger told the world back in 1976, rock and roll never forgets. However, when it came time to release his first Greatest Hits album in 1994, somebody apparently forgot to include his two highest-charting singles — "Shakedown" (#1) and "Shame on the Moon" (#2). Perhaps those tunes were too pop ("Shakedown") and too country ("Shame") for his rocker image. Maybe he just had a thing against songs that start with the letters S-H-A. Shame on the music label for shaking us down so we'd have to buy Greatest Hits 2 when it finally came out in 2003. That follow-up compilation featured those two tunes, plus another pair of previously passed-over hits, "Tryin' to Live My Life Without You" (#5) and "Fire Like" (#6). Well, at least Greatest Hits had Seger's remaining three Top 10 singles: "Night Moves" (#4), "Still the Same" (#4), and "Against the Wind" (#5). It also featured three songs that came close to the top 10 — "Hollywood Nights" (#12), "We've Got Tonite" (#13), and "You'll Accompany Me" (#14) — plus his live classic "Turn the Page," which never hit the Hot 100, believe it or not. Greatest Hits contained two new tracks, "In Your Time" a cover of Chuck Berry's "C'est La Vie." Neither of those songs charted on the pop, rock, or adult contemporary charts ... unlike "Shakedown" (which also topped the mainstream rock chart for four weeks) and "Shame on the Moon" (which topped the AC chart for two weeks and even hit #15 on the country chart). Not that I'm bitter; I owned both of those songs on 45 back in the day anyway. Furthermore, the copy of Greatest Hits I purchased served my parody purposes, as ApologetiX went on to spoof three of the tracks: "Old Time Rock and Roll" (#28), "Mainstreet" (#24), and "Still the Same." We also spoofed one from Volume 2, "Katmandu" (#43). Greatest Hits reached #8 on the Billboard 200 and sold over 10 million copies. Greatest Hits 2 went to #23 and sold a million.

1253. Greatest Hits - Billy Idol
Now here's a greatest hits album where I was actually glad they didn't include the artist's highest-charting hit. The version of Billy Idol's "Mony Mony" that went to #1 on the pop chart in 1987 was a live recording, not the studio mix that everybody had been playing at parties and weddings since it first came out in '81. Thankfully, Greatest Hits (released in March 2001) used the older one instead. This compilation featured one new track, "Don't You (Forget About Me)." Of course, that song had been a #1 hit for Simple Minds in 1985, but it was written by Idol's longtime producer, Keith Forsey. Some say it was offered to Idol before Simple Minds, but Forsey has denied this. Either way, their version sounds a lot like Billy. I was hoping that his remake on Greatest Hits would sound more like them. It was OK but not something I wanted to listen to over and over again. That wasn't a problem, because it was the last of the 16 tracks. As far as the rest of the album goes, it really does feature his greatest hits (aside from the live version of "Mony Mony") ... every single that hit the Hot 100 and everything that bubbled under: "Cradle of Love" (#2 pop, #1 mainstream rock), "Eyes Without a Face" (#4 pop, #5 mainstream), "To Be a Lover" (#6 pop, #2 mainstream for four weeks), "Sweet Sixteen" (#20 pop, #26 mainstream), "Hot in the City" (#23 pop, #31 mainstream), "Flesh for Fantasy" (#29 pop, #8 mainstream), "White Wedding" (#36 pop, #4 mainstream), "Don't Need a Gun" (#37 pop, #10 mainstream), "Rebel Yell" (#46 pop, #9 mainstream) "Catch My Fall" (#50 pop, #24 mainstream), "L.A. Woman" (#52 pop, #18 mainstream), "Dancing With Myself" (#102 pop), "Shock to the System" (#105 pop, #7 mainstream), and the aforementioned studio version of "Mony Mony" (#107 pop). The only other non-charting selection was a live acoustic version of "Rebel Yell" from 1993, but that came next to last on Greatest Hits, and the original appeared 10 tracks earlier. ApologetiX hasn't been idle when it comes to Billy. We've spoofed "Rebel Yell," "White Wedding," and "Eyes Without a Face." We also did a parody of "Don't You (Forget About Me)," but it replicated the Simple Minds version. We put out a spoof of "Mony Mony," too, but our rendition is sort of a mash-up of Billy and Tommy James, without sounding too much (or enough) like either one. Greatest Hits went to #74 on the Billboard 200 and sold a million copies.

1254. The Best That I Could Do: 1978-1988 - John Mellencamp
Released in November 1997, The Best That I Could Do: 1978-1988 was a clever title for John Mellencamp's first greatest hits collection, but he actually could have done better if he'd extended the years through 1996. Perhaps they were planning on a second volume, but it never materialized. We'd have to wait until 2004 for a comprehensive career-spanning compilation, which I'll get to later on my list, since I owned both this and that. The Best That I Could Do did have all 11 of Mellencamp's Top 15 hits from 1978-88: "Jack & Diane" (#1 for four weeks), "Hurts So Good" (#2 for four weeks), "R.O.C.K. in the U.S.A. (#2), "Lonely Ol' Night" (#6), "Small Town" (#6), "Pink Houses" (#8), "Cherry Bomb" (#8), "Crumblin' Down" (#9), "Paper in Fire" (#9), "Check It Out" (#14), and "Authority Song" (#15). It was missing four of his Top 40 hits from that time period, although it included early hits "Ain't Even Done With the Night" (#17) and "I Need a Lover" (#28), so 13 of the 14 tracks hit the Top 30. The only one that didn't was the previously unreleased closing number, "Without Expression." ApologetiX spoofed "Pink Houses," "Jack & Diane," "Lonely Ol' Night," and "Authority Song." The Best That I Could Do went to #33 on the Billboard 200 and sold over three million copies.