WARNING! THIS POST IS MEANT FOR MATURE ADULTS. IF YOU WERE BORN AFTER MAY 8, 1970 READING FURTHER MAY RESULT IN THE DISCOVERY OF EXTREMELY COOL MUSIC AND A GREATER APPRECIATION FOR YOUR PARENTS, GRANDPARENTS AND OLDSTERS IN GENERAL. CONTINUE AT YOUR OWN RISK.

Remember Jesus music?

I know, we’ve been worshiping our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ in song for almost 2,000 years.  And we have a lot of great music about Jesus today. But I’m talking about the “Jesus Music” that began back in the early 1970’s with the “Jesus People” movement and thrived for the next two decades.

Jesus People

Jesus People

Remember Jesus People? Kids, hippies, druggies, long-hairs, flower children coming to know Jesus, getting saved in the street before they had a chance to get cleaned up and acceptable for church?

With those kids, with their new lives and love for their new Savior came a new music. Jesus music. It wasn’t what most churches back then used in their worship services, but it was worship music. It was their worship music.

It was our worship music.

Remember Larry Norman, Keith Green, Barry McGuire, 2nd Chapter of Acts, Chuck GirardPhil Keaggy?

Yeah, that’s right, I’m an oldster. That was … let me see … 40 or more years ago? Well, guess what. The music (and most of us) are still here. As a matter of fact, I think, what we’ve got to say and what we’ve got to play gets better with experience. And, baby, if there’s something we’ve got, it’s experience.

A few months ago my friend and author Dr. Jim Richards (also a Jesus people) called and asked if I knew a guy by the name of Bob Farrell. He wanted to introduce us.

The name sounded familiar, but I’ve met a lot of people (that comes with experience too). Then he said that Bob and his wife Jayne were musicians and toured back in the ’70’s and ’80’s as Farrell and Farrell.

The lights came on.

Farrell and Farrell "A Portrait of Us All"

Farrell and Farrell “A Portrait of Us All”

The picture of a record album popped into my mind – full color, I could even read the title “A Portrait Of Us All.” Then a tune and lyric popped in: “All you need. Can you tell me where you’re going, tell me what you’re looking for…”

As the memory dominoes began to fall, it hit me. I still have that cassette tape (if you don’t know what a cassette tape is, ask your mom) in a box in my garage. I was going to throw that box of tapes away a few years ago, but Elaine wouldn’t let me. She’s definitely the best half of this team.

A week later Bob Farrell and I chatted on the phone … for like … an hour and a half. Cool guy. Also an extremely talented guy.

Since the Farrell and Farrell days Bob has written songs for Larnelle Harris, Amy Grant, Wynonna Judd, Michael English, Michael W. Smith, Sandi Patty, Anne MurrayEric Clapton and many more very big time artists. He’s also written a Rock Opera (“Hero”) starring Michael Tait, and an oratorio (“Savior”). Dude definitely has range.

As creative people grow and mature, the mediums in which they express their ideas often grow too. That’s how a guy like Bob moves from songs to rock operas and oratorios (I like that word. “Oratorio” It’s classy!).

Jayne and Bob Farrell

Jayne and Bob Farrell

So, Bob and I were talking about books. It made sense to me that Bob’s message should grow into books. He’s already published two and he has others in the hopper.

Bob, and authors like him, people who have a message to share with the world, are why I publish books. When I talk to authors like Bob and we decide to publish a book I’m jazzed and humbled at the same time. That I get to participate in sharing these kind of stories with the world, that it’s my job, blows my mind. Thank you Bob. Thank you Lord.

First thing we’re doing is repackaging and re-releasing Bob’s second book I Will Be, based on the lyrics of his song of the same name performed by Wynonna Judd. It’s such a great book, with so many lessons for life.Typical of a great songwriter, the text is compact and essential, no filler, no fluff. I can’t wait. I’ll let you know when the new book is ready to go.

In the meantime, here’s something you’ll want to hear: Wynonna Judd singing “I Will Be.” Consider it a sneak peek.

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