Saturday, March 01, 2008

RIP Larry Norman

CD in Play: The Pixies, Surfa Rosa and Bauhaus' "Bela Lugosi's Dead" from The Hunger.

I was never a huge fan of the music of Larry Norman, (Pitchfork's obituary is here, blogger Andy Whitman's is here) but I always had an appreciation for him. Norman was frequently dubbed the "father of Christian Rock", but I always felt he didn't deserve to be hung with that miserable responsibility. Unlike much of what came after him, Norman had his own voice and his own style. He was an individual in a Faith that all too often steps on people for being individual. And Larry Norman was certainly shunned by many of his fellow believers in the 1960's and 1970's. (I would also dare to say that he would have been shunned by many up until the 1990's)
I met him once in the mid `90's and he certainly was unique. He deserves the accolades he receives and I hope that his death spurs an interest in young Christians to listen to their own voice in creative matters, rather than conform to the standards of a moribund industry hellbent on bland uniformity. Norman died at the age of 60 on the 24th of February of this year.

13 Comments:

Anonymous david l. said...

I always like Larry Norman and had the highest respect for him. Like you I was never crazy about a lot of the Christians bands and performers that came after Larry, but you got used to it. I wasn't allowed to listen anything non-Christian and really made an effort to find Christian music I liked. There was some cool stuff that came up in the late Eighties and early Nineties.

02 March, 2008 19:10  
Blogger Magnus said...

Hmmm... what Christian bands that were at least somewhat outside the box can I think of? Bands that were sort of cool even if inside the box?

1. Daniel Amos/Swirling Eddies/Terry Taylor. Always worthwhile.
2. Breakfast With Amy
3. Adam Again
4. The 77's
5. Scattered Few

Umm? well the only ones I listened to were Daniel Amos and the 77's. Friends listened to the rest. I honestly cannot think of any more names.

02 March, 2008 22:35  
Anonymous Geosomin said...

I roomed with Cindi at BBC and was forced to listen to Larry Norman abotu 10 out of every 24 hours a day. I didn't mind him, but it was a bit too Neil Youngish for me...

I was more an Adam again, Steve Taylor, 77s sort. J was into Hokus Pick. And Technocraci was cool...they made 1 album...a sort of moody technoish album.

04 March, 2008 11:03  
Blogger Magnus said...

Steve Taylor was outside the Christian box. That Peter and Trent haven't commented leads me to believe they are no longer reading my blog. *sniff*
Geo, clearly you nothing about Neil Young if you compare the two. It's like comparing The Orb with Orbital! Anal retentive music junkie not like...

04 March, 2008 16:53  
Blogger Geosomin said...

What I meant was, brilliant lyrics and good music by both of them...just hate the voice...rather droney and lots of acoustic guitar.
So probably not the best comparison...but inside my head it was a zinger :)

Oh...and Mike Roe's solo album Safe as Milk was good too...

05 March, 2008 07:19  
Blogger Geosomin said...

And yes, I must admit I know little about Neil Young. As little as possible. The man's voice could peel paint. (brilliant songwriter tho.) He is one of the few people who I willa ctively change the music or turn off the radio when he comes on...he's like the evil alterego of Willie Nelson. Except I really like Willie Nelson.
I'm not really helping myself here am I?
Shutting up now...

05 March, 2008 07:21  
Blogger Magnus said...

Poor Geo... BTW, Safe as Milk is also the title of Capatain Beefheart and His Magic Band's 1967 debut album. Hmmm, Mr Roe? Would you care to comment?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Safe_as_Milk

05 March, 2008 08:57  
Blogger Trent said...

Larry who?

Sorry. Never was a fan. Caught him at the Willingdon show because it was The Thing To Do, and rather liked it, but not enough to go out and buy the album.

Wouldn't have known it sparked such a rousing discussion, cept for the guilt trippin' email.

Personally, I was more saddened that Gary Gygax died. OOTS did a touching tribute.

05 March, 2008 10:03  
Blogger Trent said...

And what's with the slam about not reading the blog? I commented on cummings not half an hours ago, in this very boutique.

Okay, half a week? Half a month at most.

05 March, 2008 10:05  
Blogger Magnus said...

He was one of the D&D guys, right? And I guilt trip because I figure you'd have something worth saying on the subject.

05 March, 2008 11:08  
Blogger Trent said...

One of? Feh. He was the Larry Norman of Role Playing. Father of. Without whom, yada, yada.

05 March, 2008 11:51  
Blogger Magnus said...

I thought &D was started by Gygax and some other guy - wait a minute - Don Kaye. (Thank you Wikipedia)

05 March, 2008 14:31  
Anonymous Gavin said...

I don't think I've ever heard a Larry Norman song.

05 March, 2008 22:44  

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