Tuesday, 26 February 2008

One Way to Heaven

I learn from today's News that the Christian rock singer, Larry Norman, died on Sunday, 24th, aged 60.

I saw him perform on several occasions, the last at Hove Town Hall, Brighton, Sussex, in the early 1970's. Never had light blue denim and long blond hair looked so good. His style of singing was raw and the lyrics were stark, and he captured the apocalyptic mood of those days. His "One Way" upraised finger sign became our Christian version of the Black Panther clenched fist salute, and I saw it all around me in the Hyde Park Festival of Light rally in 1972.

His proclamation of the Gospel was influential on me as I came to a personal faith in Jesus Christ. His first album, "Upon This Rock" was a revelation to me that the Christian message could be proclaimed in a contemporary style without compromise.

I then bought the album, "Only Visiting this Planet" and both were played fairly continuously.

I then got hold of the "Bootleg" album which contained "unofficial" recordings and studio sessions, and many more songs from his repertoire. Then came "In Another Land", with more composed songs and less "in your face" production. I played it, but the first two remain my favourites.

Thank you, Larry, for your ministry of music and faith.

Last night I came to the gates
With invitation in hand
And my old life left behind
I came as soon as He called
But long before I had planned
Still I came prepared to dine

Enjoy the wedding feast!

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