Monday, March 10, 2008

Larry Norman

The week I didn't write brought news of two lights going out in our world. I heard them both the same day. Driving that morning, the kids asked me why I cried when I learned Larry Norman was dead. I tried to explain the ways a musician can influence your life, and how I felt I knew Larry though the honesty of his music.

David and I once drove to Florida for a Larry Norman concert--I think it was 13 or 14 years ago. It was in a theater-become-coffee house, and when he asked for requests, David yelled out a favorite, "do Six O'Clock News!" Larry smiled, then replied, "I don't think we have that kind of coverage tonight."

Here are some of the Lyrics, and you can listen to it at this link
I've got a ticket for southeast Asia,
I got my camera and press card badge
They only pay me to stay the weekend;
What if I never come back?

The flight was pretty rough
I got a room, took a sauna,
The bellboy gook put my bags on the bed,
He left without his tip.

Then I loaded up my Hasselblad full of film
And I stepped outside, I stepped outside.

I'm taking pictures of burning houses
Colored movies of misery.
I see the flash of guns, how red the mud becomes,
I've got a close-up view.

I'm the six o'clock news - what can I do?
All those kids without shoes - what can I do?
Military coups - what can I do?
I'm just the six o'clock news.

Larry posted this to his website the day before he died:
I feel like a prize in a box of cracker jacks with God's hand reaching down to pick me up.

We'll miss you, Larry. Thanks for leaving us some great tunes, Bro.