The Archives

 

Matt Conner

writer, music journalist

Matt Conner is a freelance writer and journalist who has interviewed nearly everyone who has ever played music. That isn't entirely true.

On Andy & Jill

The musical bumper sticker on my car during the ol’ college years would have definitely read “I’d Rather Be Listening To Acoustic Music.” Therein was my initial foray into the early careers of Square Peg artists like our own Proprietor. I found great enjoyment in the Texan college worship scene (early Crowder, Robbie Seay, Justin [...]

Hate What I Love (Zummi Style)

I am a verbal processor. The tangible outcome of being such a person is that sometimes you don’t discover things to be true until you’ve already said them–as if I’m some prophet who makes things come to pass just by speaking them (i.e. Zummi Gummi of the Gummi Bears). And I had such [...]

Pressure To Form

I took a break from teaching today and had a chance to sit back. It’s nice for a time such as this and our guest speaker, Beth, did something quite different from the norm. Set up front was a potter’s wheel and all accompanying materials – a bowl of water, tools for scraping and shaping, [...]

Forgetting the Audience

I’m afraid of you. And I hate to admit it.

I was just talking about this concept earlier today. I’ve been teaching each Sunday morning for the past (nearly) four years within the church we started in that course of time. And some people from our church community and I were discussing that, in those early [...]

Why Radiohead?

In Rainbows was it for me. The (over)hyped release of Radiohead’s latest masterpiece was so far beyond any other release I heard last year that I dubbed it #1 on the Top Ten I had to write for several publications. In fact, it wasn’t even close. It was numbers 2-9 that took me significant time [...]

The Artist’s Intent

“I think writers with actual intentions generally end up saying things they already thought they knew, and I’m not much interested in reducing my vocation as a poet to something like propagandist. I write poems to find things out, not to communicate some previously ossified conclusion.”

Measuring Art’s Value?

Good, beautiful and true. Those are the three words the interview subject told me, the interviewer, were the standards for meaningful art. Those are the words that he used to measure art and its value. Of course, his explanation flowed with eloquence and brilliance and I found the entire discussion stimulating. And those terms are [...]

Orderly Creativity?

“Be regular and orderly in your life so that you may be violent and original in your work.” Gustave Flaubert

I just read this quote and was quite taken by it simply for its right-on-ness. The writer side of me has endless ideas for books, articles, essays and even blog posts forever lost, aborted by a [...]

Treasure of You

Every Tuesday morning, I sit in a circle of other pastors and discuss and debate (and sometimes yell and point) the Bible for our weekly sermon. We call it the Teaching Pool, a fancier name than “study circle”. Still, for the last four years or more, this same group of 10 or so has taught [...]

(Not) Trading Spaces

Twelve hours ago I wanted to be right where you are now. Better yet, I just didn’t want to be where I was. I didn’t want to be what I was or even who I was. These sort of Sundays happen for me every now and then – the ones where I feel there couldn’t [...]

The Art of ‘I Don’t Know’

I don’t know as much as I say that I do. Then again, I tend to say “I don’t know” a lot more than most people in my profession – at least those I’ve seen. I’m a pastor in the Midwest which, I am learning, means that I am supposed to be an expert on [...]

There Is No Place Safe

Just wanted to share perhaps my favorite quote pertaining to the birth of Jesus:

“If holiness and the awful power and majesty of God were present in this least auspicious of all events, this birth of a peasant’s child, then there is no place or time so lowly and earthbound but that holiness can be present [...]

Why I’m Afraid of Silence

Drive three hours. Arrive at monastery. Check in. Unpack duffle bag consisting of proper amounts of toiletries, clothes, choice books and journal. Read for ninety minutes. Pack up bag. Drive three hours home.

The moment was rather embarrassing although it’s definitely advantageous for my job. As a pastor, part of my weekly duties is to develop [...]

Settling on This Side of Jordan

Most of my thoughts today find themselves in orbit around a concept seen throughout the Bible. Unfortunately, it’s leapt out of the pages and into my own life as well.

It started when studying Paul’s words in his letter to the Philippians, urging them to focus on eternity and not to be distracted by the [...]

Between Hating and Forgiving

“It took me a long time and most of the world to learn what I know about love and fate and the choices we make, but the heart of it came to me in an instant, while I was chained to a wall and being tortured. I realized, somehow, through the screaming in my [...]