A husband and father of three, Carlos' ministry journey has taken him from Sandals Church in Riverside, California, to the Atlanta-based Buckhead Church. Most recently, he's begun working with pastors Jarrett and Jeanne Stevens to launch Soul City Church in Chicago. Along the way, he has served as an advisor for the Saddleback Worship Conference for the past four years and was one of the key planners and teachers for the Catalyst Conference attended by over 12,000 worship leaders and ministry team members in October '09.
His goal is to "ignite a movement of authenticity among all generations of Christians that morphs the face of the evangelical church into a place of being real with yourself, others and God."
Songs include "Rain It Down", "Jesus Saves", and "We Will Worship".
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Ragamuffin Soul| Posted May 26, 2013 What is a "ragamuffin?" Well, according to Google, it's a science-fiction novel, a domesticated breed of cat, or a dirty shabbily clothed child. This word reached a certain level of popularity after the Brennan Manning book "Ragamuffin Gospel" about God's ever-reaching grace to our dirty sin filled world. As a matter of fact, Manning might have incited a movement declaring that with grace there's nothing we can do to deserve it or earn it. NewcomerCarlos Whittakerhas decided to follow in this grace movement as he presents his debut offering,Ragamuffin Soul(If you're still wondering which definition of "ragamuffin" this album is referring to; you can count out the sci-fi book and the kitty cat).
The album starts with "Rain It Down" petitioning God to rain down His love on His people. While the song is not the strongest opener musically, lyrically it's almost a throwback to the Psalms as Carlos sings, "With desert hearts looking to the heavens, desperate for your holy fountain, our eyes will turn to the skies." This is followed by "Can't Start This Fight," which is reminiscent of a 90's pop song with a rhythmic flow but a melody that doesn't really go anywhere dynamically. "We Will Worship You" is the first seemingly slow song on Ragamuffin but surprises the listener with a well executed chorus that really cries out for God to save the world.
"Because of You" has a very contemporary worship sound similar to that of Chris Tomlin and Matt Redman, well-orchestrated but not something very different than what's already out there. "Grace Already Won" sounds like it was designed to be an anthem as the chorus says, "Grace already won, grace has covered us, grace runs deep, it's never ending." While the message is strong the anthem aspect isn't. The chorus seems to be so wordy that it makes the song stiff. The album concludes with "We Will Dance" and appropriately the song is driven with an electronic drum beat. While not an actual dance song, it does sing of celebrating the creator of the Universe with all that we are.
Ragamuffin Soul is a hit and miss album. Some will like it while others will not. Carlos does seem to have a slight lisp which can be distracting at points but at other times it sounds completely absent from his speech. The music, melody, and lyrics all are decent but nothing progressive. Worship leaders might be able to find a pinch of something different in his music, however it might not be the kind of "different" that they are looking for. Nevertheless, I don't believe we've really scratched the surface of Carlos Whittaker and I look forward to seeing what is deeper inside of his ragamuffin soul.
It's ok| Posted May 17, 2010
It's an ok album. There are some songs on it that are good, some are ok, some are just bad. Honestly. And the ones that are ok and bad- are just cliche' they are overused in ideas, melodies, and lyrics.
Fantastic| Posted May 14, 2010
I first heard one of his songs during a Sunday night worship service. I absolutely loved the song! I went and found out who the song was by later and checked out some of Carlos' songs and the album. I really love We Will Worship You and God of Second Chances. Fantastic.
New Worship!| Posted May 06, 2010
As a worship pastor I am constantly looking for new anointed worship songs and artists to use within the church. Carlos sings with such a passion....his cd is amazing, as well as his blog! I'm so thankful for resources such as NRT that help me find great new music!
Carlos Whittaker| Posted May 05, 2010
When I first found Carlos Whittaker's blog for the first time last week, I was excited to see another worship leader who was totally hip with social networking and the Web 2.0 thing. I'm always excited to try new tools that help bring people together in community. I remember those first few times logging into a public computer at college back in the early 90's. (Yeah, I know I just totally dated myself.) I remember the thrill of being able to instantly access so much information, and yet I felt so very alone sitting in front of that computer while dozens of others near me frantically typed away at theirs. Back then the roads on the internet were made for one person at a time, except for those nifty little bulletin boards and listservs.
There are superhighways on the internet now, and individuals can feel that sense of community through the likes of Facebook and Twitter, and you can even craft a following if you feature a blog rich in content written by someone who clearly loves what they're doing.
Carlos seems to be doing just that. Though I'm new to his Ragamuffin Soul blog, he's developed a following over the years that has helped him fuel the release of his new praise and worship CD by the same name. I had a chance to listen to this new CD last week as it was streamed for free via NewReleaseTuesday's site and was immediately impressed by the pounding power chords, immensely deep bass that had my subwoofer pumping, and Carlos' smooth voice had me feeling like I was listening to a perfect coupling of original Sonicflood and edgy Newsboys. And yet Carlos manages to differentiate this album from either band with his own fresh sounds and personal touch.
Though "God of Second Chances" seems to be the focused pick for the new single, I suspect one of the songs you'll soon be singing in churches throughout the nation will be "Grace Already Won." It's a dynamic song with a throbbing beat that will bring people to their feet as they join in with the worship team singing,
Grace already won, Grace has covered us, Grace runs deep, it's neverending! Grace is strong enough, Grace will overcome, Grace will be our everlasting!
I plan on buying the Ragamuffin Soul CD this weekend. Already it's been steadily climbing the Itunes charts and I was surprised to see it on the front page among the top album sales.
Carlos Whittaker, Ragamuffin Soul| Posted April 21, 2010
This is a good album and the lyrics are very clear. What really struck me with this album was that the relationship that Carlos has with God comes across in the album. You can sense that Carlos has a very tight relationship with God and that he has a very deep love of and for God.
Mature Lyrics - Honest Heart - Sheer Joy| Posted April 20, 2010
Carlos Whittaker is the face of the hugely popular Ragamuffin Soul blog and has recently been visible for his infamous "Single Ladies" YouTube video.
A fan of modern media and all things Web 2.0, he is an engaging person who has built up a huge fanbase on Facebook, Twitter and , of course, his own blog.
This Debut CD comes hot on the heels of this years EP release and builds on the infectious tunes that were released to wide acclaim.
The album features rich worship-focussed lyrics that give a glimpse to the mature heart of their author and the tunes are always singable whilst not resorting to formulaic sounds.
The quality of this release makes it hard to believe that we have not heard more from him. Let's hope that it gets the coverage and sales it deserves, and that the songs themselves find themselves woven into the fabric of our worship.