Larry Norman died this last Sunday, and I had never heard of him until today. I have no idea how I missed him all these years.
In 1969 Larry came out with a Christian rock album, something which had never been done before. His comment about that album:
“I wanted to push aside the traditional gospel quartet music, break down the church doors and let the hippies and the prostitutes and other unwashed rabble into the sanctuary…I wanted to talk about feeding the poor, going into the world….[I felt that] most of the modern music was anemic and needed a transfusion.”
Today I’m listening for the first time, and I’m really digging it. The music is classic 70’s rock, sounding a great deal to me like Lynyrd Skynyrd and at times like Kansas. I think his voice is very similar to Don McLean‘s, though someone else in my office thinks it’s like Jim Croce.
Those growing up in conservative Christian circles in the 70’s and 80’s (like me) may remember all the fire and brimstone aimed at “Christian Rock”, the devil’s music. It was all because of Larry. He started it, and he took piles of it, and he took it in stride and kept on doing what he did.
I suggest you try it, if for no other reason than the history.