Monday, February 25, 2008

Thanks, and peace, to Larry Norman

Larry Norman, the original Christian rocker, passed away early yesterday morning (Sunday, February 25, 2008). Though not known to many younger fans of Christian music, Larry Norman was there at the beginning of Christian rock music. When I was growing up in church and going to camp we often sang his song "I Wish We'd All Been Ready" (later covered by DC Talk). The band I now play in, Unfinished, have one song that we have played at every gig in our history - "The Rock That Doesn't Roll", also by Larry Norman.

As true for many of the early leaders of any movement, Larry Norman has been largely unnoticed in the Christian music scene in recent years. Most likely, he probably never profited to the extent that many of the genre's artists do today. But his impact is enormous, and who knows what Christian music would be like without his influence.

A number of years ago, while attending the Ichthus music festival in Wilmore, Kentucky, I was walking through one of the more secluded areas of the festival site when I noticed a guy with a beard, long hair, and a guitar singing for four or five people under a tree. I still remember thinking "that surely isn't Larry Norman." It was! I walked over and joined the handful of other people listening to him and he provided us with a wonderful time as we talked and listened to him play. How many other legends in music would be so accessible?

Larry had many health problems in recent years, mostly heart related, and in the end his heart was too weak to continue. His heart will always be a part of Christian music and it is better because of his influence.

Rest well, Larry, in the arms of God.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

2008 Presidential Ticket

It may be absolutely foolish to prognosticate in a political year such as this one, but here goes. It's 5:17 p.m. EST and the only results in from Super Tuesday is my home state of West Virginia. The Mountaineer state has selected Mike Huckabee, which is a surprise to me.

Here are my predictions for the final tickets for the Democrats and Republicans -

For the Democrats - Hillary Clinton and Evan Bayh (Democratic Senator from Indiana).
Despite Obama's surge in the polls in recent weeks I still think Hillary Clinton will win the nomination. Evan Bayh, whose name has come up before as a running mate, would help Clinton in the heartland, which she will need to carry to win the race.

For the Republicans - John McCain and Mike Huckabee.
For McCain, disliked by many conservative Republicans, Huckabee would curry favor with the conservative wing of the party.

If this is the final ticket, remember you read it here. If not, I'm hoping this post will be long forgotten.

Note - these are my predictions; they are NOT endorsements.