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§246 Larry Norman – the religious songs

October 14, 2008

In the end of September I published “Larry Norman – the political songs”. Now it’s time to publish a few of the the non political songs by Larry Norman – the religious songs. Well, actually all his songs were about religion or politics, but these are my two favourites. The first one is “Why should the Devil have all the good music”, and I think the title speaks for itself. It’s a protest song against Christians who regarded rock n’roll as a sin and called him “satan’s tool” etc. The clip below is from a concert in 1988. However, in this clip from 1999 he also explains the background. He says that when Elvis Presley came along in the 50’s most white people thought it was something new, but that he recognized it as “black church music”, since he grew up with black people. However, most white christians were totally unaware of the black culture and music, and they saw Elvis’s music as something secular. They did not understand that what Norman was trying to do was to bring the traditional church music, under its new label “rock n’roll” back to the church. Because why should the devil have all the good music?

I want the people to know that he saved my soul
But I still like to listen to the radio
They say rock-n-roll is wrong, we’ll give you one more chance
I say, “I feel so good I’ve gotta get up and dance.”

I know what’s right, I know what’s wrong, I don’t confuse it

All I’m really trying to say is, “Why should the devil have all the good music?”
I feel good every day, ’cause Jesus is the rock and he rolled my blues away

They say to cut my hair, they’re driving me insane
I grew it out long to make room for my brain
But sometimes people don’t understand
What’s a good boy doing in a rock-n-roll band

There’s nothing wrong with playing blues licks

But if you’ve got a reason tell me to my face, “Why should the devil have all the good music?”
There’s nothing wrong with what I play, ’cause Jesus is the rock and he rolled my blues away

I ain’t knocking the hymns, just give me a song that has a beat
I ain’t knocking the hymns, just give me a song that moves my feet
I don’t like none of those funeral marches, I ain’t dead yet!

Jesus told the truth, and Jesus showed the way
There’s one more thing I’d like to say
They nailed him to the cross and they laid him in the ground
But they should have known you can’t keep a good man down

I feel good every day I don’t want to lose it

All I wanna, all I wanna know is, “Why should the devil have all the good music?”

I’ve been filled I feel okay
Jesus is the rock and he rolled my blues
Jesus is the rock and he rolled my blues
Jesus is the rock and he rolled my blues away

The second one is called “The Rock That Doesn’t Roll”. The title alone made me laugh. It’s catchy. It’s been stuck in my head for days. My wife know its humming by heart by now. She hates it.
The clip below is the original recording from 1977, but there are concert clips also. A regular concert from 2007 here and a concert from 2008 that seems a bit more personal and loose here. In the second concert it’s just him and his guitar, and he doesn’t remember all the lyrics.

I was lost and blind, till a friend of mine came and took me by the hand,
Then he lead me to His kingdom, which was in another land,
Now my life is changed, it’s rearranged,
When I think of my past I feel so strange,
Wowie zowie well he saved my soul,
He’s the rock that doesn’t roll.

He’s the rock that doesn’t roll,
He’s the rock that doesn’t roll,
Well He’s good for the body and great for the soul,
He’s the rock that doesn’t roll.

I was all alone, like a rolling stone,
I was going nowhere fast,
I was on the road so far from home,
When the future touched my past,
Now I feel so blessed, cause he gave me rest,
And I finally feel like I passed the test,
I wanna be like him, yes that’s my goal,
Like a rock that doesn’t roll.

He’s the rock that doesn’t roll,
He’s the rock that doesn’t roll,
Well He’s good for the body and great for the soul,
He’s the rock that doesn’t roll.

I was lost and blind till a friend of mine came and took me by the hand,
Then he lead me to his kingdom, that was in another land,
Now my mind is blown, my head has grown,
A solid rock ain’t a rolling stone,
Wowie zowie, well the cat’s got soul,
He’s the rock that doesn’t roll.

He’s the rock that doesn’t roll,
He’s the rock that doesn’t roll,
Well He’s good for the body and great for the soul,
He’s the rock that doesn’t roll.

You’ve to rock me on the water,
You’ve got to rock me from my grave,
You’ve got to rock me till I’m feeling good,
You’ve got to rock me till I’m, rock me till I’m saved.

He’s the rock that doesn’t roll,
He’s the rock that doesn’t roll,
Well He’s good for the body and great for the soul,
He’s the rock that doesn’t roll.

One comment

  1. Hey, I agree… Why should the devil have all the good music??! Haven’t heard much of Larry Norman, but I really like that song🙂



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