LifeWalk

______________________ LIFE, FAITH, ETCETERA

Buffalo Richie June 2, 2011

SOMETHING’S  HAPPENING  HERE!


When I heard the remaining members of Buffalo Springfield were at it again,
I had to break out Richie Furay’s “I’ve Got A Reason.”

Sonically,  this album still holds it’s own as one of the
best of all times.  Not to minimize Richie’s talents, but
my musical idol Michael Omartian’s influence is more
than noticeable.
These are great songs, masterfully produced, and just
plain fun to listen to, and sing along with.


Back in 1976, when this came out, I was part of a youth group that ran
what we thought passed for a bookstore.  We never sold much, but it
was a place to hang out and listen to music.  We had some some good times.
Wow. It’s like that was lifetime ago.

Anyway, “Jesus music” was starting to see some higher quality recordings at this time.
Certainly Norman’s “Upon This Rock,” and Petra’s debut record had good writing, talented musicians, and some great songs, but
the production money just wasn’t there.
Part of the backing for “…Reason”came via a partnership with Asylum records, to whom Richie
promised that, although the record would reflect his Christian faith, it would not
be “preachy.”  It was a positive LP, without being religious.  This gave the album a much greater marketability.

I think the only other Furay LPs I’ve owned
were “Dance A Little Light,” with a cover of one of my childhood
faves, Jay and the American’s “This Magic Moment,” and Richie’s last before his long
musical hiatus, “Seasons Of Change.”

 


Of “Dance A Little Light,” one reviewer said,
“Though recorded by what was technically a Christian rock group, [it] is
a far cry from the heavy-handed, musically inept evangelizing often associated with the genre.”
Frankly, that’s pretty high praise.



I think the next time I was aware of anything Furay was doing is when he teamed up with
the Elefante Brothers for “When Will the World See That We Need Jesus,” which
would later be covered by Petra. [Video below.]


I like music.  I have one on the widest variety of “likes,” if you will, of the people I know.
I can never imagine being stuck in one decade or genre of music.
BUT, if I had to pick a favorite period, it would be the late 60’s through the 70’s.

My wife and I have seen a lot of the “old” acts in the past few years:
The Monkees, Denis Deyoung, Alice Cooper, An ABBA tribute band, and The Grass Roots, to name just some.
We recently saw B.J. Thomas, and we have tickets for upcoming concerts to
Hermin’s Hermits and Three Dog Night.




So Richie, Stephen and Neil;
“For What It’s Worth,” I would be greatly pleased if you
would get yourselves to Fort Wayne, Indiana.
I’d love to add Buffalo Springfield to the above list,
before the man come and take you away.


[Click on image to read the
Rolling Stone Article on Buffalo Springfield]



[Click on any of the Richie Furay album covers above for reviews and purchase options.]








 

My Review of “Raised By Wolves” January 10, 2010

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“Raised By Wolves:  The Story Of Christian Rock & Roll”
by John J Thompson

I’ve been listening to “Jesus music” for about 35 years, and this book has brought back many memories.  It’s also brought to light many new (to me) stories.  This is the most complete coverage of “Christian” music and its history I can imagine.

Everybody is here:  From Larry Norman, Randy Stonehill, Andre Crouch, and Barry McGuire (who was very encouraging during my participation in the “2009 Aids Walk”), to Petra and Rez, to Amy Grant and M.W. Smith, to DC Talk, Daniel Amos, and Steve Taylor (who loved making “hamburger out of sacred cows” and guided the music and careers of The Newsboys, Sixpence, and others), to Keith Green and Rich Mullins, to Alice Cooper, Sixpence None the Richer, and Creed, to Delirious? and Sonic Flood, and Lauren Hill.

Lots of stories, behind the scenes insights, and inside information.  But more than just the artists and music, this book comments on the “Christian music industry,” various attitudes and expectations, and the age-old story of religion always fighting what God is doing.  It also comments on the down side of the “Christian” marketplace:

“The Christian community had nearly completed its total retreat from mainstream society.  It even had its own television networks.  Many Christians were able to live in a world within a world, one that would protect them from ever brushing up against non-Christians.  And the ghetto was large enough that many people made millions of dollars selling Christian CDS to Christians, Christian books to Christians, and even Christian toys, paintings, videos, and clothes to Christians.  A handful of artists, however, wanted nothing to do with that ghetto.”

In many ways, the “CCM Industry” serves to further the illusion of the separation and compartmentalization of the Christian life into secular and sacred.  But, wheat and weeds have always grown together, and will continue to do so.  There’s a lot of great music out there by people of faith.  This book, at many points, shows how the industry tried to ignore it (or lambast it), while the “church” tried, first, to destroy it, and then to control it.

There are a lot of true “success” stories chronicled here as well; Petra, Lost Dogs, and Sixpence None The Richer being among them.

This book is already about 10 years old, so the last decade is, of course, not covered.  But, I can’t think of an abundance of landmark happenings in CCM during that period anyway.  Except maybe for Stryper getting back together.  Oh, and the release of Re-Union’s “Inside Out.” 😉

If you’re a long-time devotee, this book will provide a nostalgic trip down memory lane.  If you’re relatively new to the scene, you will be brought “up to speed.”  In either case, you’ll find a fun, informative, and challenging time with “Raised By Wolves.”

 

 
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