8 Essential Christian Artists From the 90s

Carman's cover for R.I.O.T.
Carman's cover for R.I.O.T. | (PHOTO:


DC Talk is often referred to as the biggest Christian group of all time. The band established themselves as a hip-hop gospel force in the early 90s and then did a complete 180 by turning into a rock band with the album "Jesus Freak." Perhaps one of the most important Christian albums of all time, "Jesus Freak" brought Christian music into the mainstream and paved the way for many of today's top Christian artists. Plus this is where everyone's favorite TobyMac got his start.

Recognize the other two? Kevin Max on the left is the new singer of Audio Adrenaline and Michael Tait, on the right, is the newest singer of the Newsboys.

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DC Talk photo from their album 'Free At Last.'
DC Talk photo from their album "Free At Last." | (Photo:


Michael W. Smith has been in Christian music since the early 80s and he is still going strong today! In the 90s Smith had a slew of hits including, "Go West Young Man" and "Love Me Good." Now-a-days he is focusing more on the worship side of music, and even helped compile a soundtrack for Billy Graham.

Michael W. Smith's 1990 album, 'Go West Young Man.'
Michael W. Smith's 1990 album, "Go West Young Man." | (PHOTO:


These days the Newsboys are looking and sounding quite different from their 90s counterparts, but this core lineup pictured plus and minus people throughout the 90s, was responsible for some of the top Christian hits in the 90s. Lead singer Peter Furler (center) penned catchy hits such as "Take Me to Your Leader," "Shine," "Entertaining Angels," "Not Ashamed," and many more. Oh yeah, and always remember, "They don't serve breakfast in hell!"

Classic Newsboys lineup.
Classic Newsboys lineup. | (Photo:


Crystal Lewis is still around today, but in the 90s she was on fire with hits. Perhaps her biggest, "People Get Ready," a song that warns of the imminent return of Jesus, served as sort of an anthem for Christians to non-believers. Of course who can forget that time she teamed up with rapper T-Bone on "Little Jackie."

Crystal Lewis 'Beauty for Ashes' album cover.
Crystal Lewis "Beauty for Ashes" album cover. | (PHOTO:


Steven Curtis Chapman is another artist who has enjoyed success since the 80s' He just released an album called "The Glorious Unfolding." Back in the 90s people were swimming to hits, "Dive," and chasing dreams on "The Great Adventure."

Steve Curtis Chapman album cover for 'The Great Adventure.'
Steve Curtis Chapman album cover for "The Great Adventure." | (PHOTO:


Audio Adrenaline were sort of the protege's to DC Talk, but they headed out on their own legendary journey through Christian music. Their biggest hits, "Big House," "Never Gonna Be as Big as Jesus," and "Hands and Feet" are Christian music anthems until this day. Audio Adrenaline always reinvented themselves with every album, and as they came to an end in 2007 because of lead singer Mark Stuart's failing voice, music fans mourned. However, as of this year, they are back! Kevin Max has taken up the role as new lead singer, and the band is at it again to reach a new generation.

Audio Adrenaline classic 90s lineup around the album 'Underdog.'
Audio Adrenaline classic 90s lineup around the album "Underdog." | (PHOTO:


Jaci Velasquez is still around today, although she has been fairly quiet the last few years. In 90s she released her debut album while she was just a young teenager, and immediately left an impact on CCM music. People will remember her most for powerful songs such as "On My Knees" and "We Can Make a Difference."

Jaci Velasquez's debut album.
Jaci Velasquez's debut album. | (PHOTO:

What other 90s artists did you listen to back in the day? Please share in the comments!

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