David’s Funeral

Larry Norman died this past weekend.

From Christianity Today:

Christian music legend Larry Norman died Sunday of heart failure, according to his brother Charles Norman. He was 60.

Norman, a blonde, long-haired rocker who is often called the father of Christian rock music, was a giant in the Christian music industry, said Chris Willman, senior music writer for Entertainment Weekly.

“His influence outweighed his sales so much that it’s comical,” Willman said. “He certainly had a heart for evangelism — almost to his detriment, I might say. He really could’ve been a star if he were singing about something other than Jesus.” Read the rest

It’ll be interesting to see how we react to Larry’s death. Will we gush accolades on our radio stations that didn’t play him?  Will labels that wouldn’t sign him (or his kind) now make tribute CDs?  Will music lovers who eschew singer-songwriters with a pointy finger suddenly revere him?

It gets complicated. You see, people in the industry don’t always speak highly of Larry Norman.  He allegedly didn’t work well with others.  Nor do they always speak well of Keith Green.  He was allegedly self-righteous and arrogant.  Or how about Rich Mullins?  Allegedly a foul-mouthed drunk.

What would they…No, what would we do after David’s death? How would we react after hearing the man after God’s own heart died in bed with a young beautiful virgin?  How would we respond to the passing of a righteous man who passed out naked in his tent?  Or the Rock who talked like the devil?  Or Israel who once duked it out with God?  Or the apostle who called our best nothing but “s—?”

Some will always think of Larry as a dirty mean hippie.  Some will bronze him in their memory as a perfected hero.  To me he’s just another busted beautiful human…with better hair than most.