This is the second posthumous album from Keith Green. The highlight of the album is the track “The Prodigal Son Suite” which was part of a Rock Opera that Keith was writing but unfortunately was interrupted by his death in 1982. The album featured a multipage booklet from Keith’s Ministry “Last Days Ministry”. It details the history of Last Day’s Ministry and is actually a pretty good read. The album is typical Keith and needless to say if your a fan of his work you will love this album as it is very well produced as usual.
Tracklist 1 – I Can’t Wait To Get To Heaven – 3:19 2 – Lord I’m Gonna Love You – 2:46 3 – The Prodigal Son Suite – 12:03 4 – Keep All That Junk To Yourself – 3:23 5 – Open Your Eyes – 4:02 6 – Love With Me (Melody’s Song) – 3:15 7 – Only By Following Jesus – 3:10 8 – Song For Josiah – 6:12
Credits Arranged By [Strings, Orchestra], Conductor, Electric Piano [Rhodes], Organ – Harlan Rogers Artwork By [Art Direction, Design] – Last Days Ministries, Pretty Good Graphics Backing Vocals – Alphanette Silas*, Howard Smith, Keith Green (2), Linda McCrary, Maxi Anderson Bass – Abraham Laboriel, Hadley Hockensmith Co-producer – Melody Green Engineer – Peter Granet Guitar – Hadley Hockensmith Orchestra – The London Philharmonic Orchestra Photography – Jerry Melrose Piano [Acoustic] – Keith Green (2) Producer, Drums, Percussion – Bill Maxwell Written-By – Keith Green (2) (tracks: A1 to B1, B3 to B5), Melody Green (tracks: A1, B1, B2, B4)
Companies, etc. Distributed By – MCA Distributing Corporation
This was the last album Keith recorded before his untimely death later in the same year it was released. He passed away in a plane crash in July of 1982 in an airplane crash that also claimed the lives of his two children, Josiah, and Bethany. His wife was not on the flight and lives in California and continues Mark’s ministry entitled Last Day Ministries. It is unfortunate that this album has that sad piece of news forever attached to it. Lucky for us however there were more recordings made by Keith over previous years so we were able to enjoy more music from him after his passing. Now I will be perfectly clear, Keith does not do my style of music but I know good music when I hear it and this is good music. Probably his best work. That said can anyone explain to me why he didn’t have one chart single off an album this good and especially given the unfortunate attention this album received? I am usually critical of the CCM business because they ignored the up and coming young acts on their charts, but this time I’m critical because they ignored an album that anyone could hear had several chart songs on it. Oh well we are left to enjoy the album and remember Keith as an excellent musician and man of great devotion.
Tracklist 1 – The Lord Is My Shepherd – 4:10 2 – You Are The One! – 2:39 3 – How Majestic Is Thy Name – 3:59 4 – Draw Me – 3:47 5 – Glory Lord Jesus – 3:20 6 – There Is A Redeemer – 3:11 7 – The Promise Song – 3:21 8 – Until That Final Day – 4:38 9 – Jesus Is Lord Of All – 2:32 10 – O God Our Lord – 3:49 11 – I Will Give Thanks To The Lord – 1:47 12 – Holy, Holy, Holy – 3:40
Credits Arranged By [Strings], Conductor – Harlan Rogers Arranged By [Tracks] – Bill Maxwell, Keith Green Backing Vocals – Alphanette Silas, Howard Smith, Keith Green, Linda McCrary Bass – Abraham Laboriel Concertmaster – Sidney Sax Design [Inner Sleeve Design] – Pretty Good Graphics Design, Layout – Stan Evenson Design Drums – Bill Maxwell Electric Piano [Fender Rhodes] – Harlan Rogers Engineer – Gordon Shryock Engineer [Assistant] – Wally Grant Engineer [Orchestra] – Keith Grant Engineer [Overdubs] – Peter Hayden, Willie Harlan Guitar – Hadley Hockensmith Mastered By – Steve Hall Mixed By – Bill Maxwell, Gordon Shryock, Keith Green Mixed By [Assistant] – Wally Grant Percussion – Alex Acuña, Bill Maxwell Photography By – Mark Hanauer Piano – Keith Green Producer – Bill Maxwell, Keith Green Strings, Orchestra – The London National Philharmonic Orchestra Synthesizer – Tom Keene
Companies, etc. Copyright (c) – Last Days Ministries Recorded At – Weddington Studios Recorded At – Olympic Studios Overdubbed At – Paramount Recorders Overdubbed At – International Automated Media Mixed At – Weddington Studios Mastered At – MCA Whitney Recording Studios Published By – Birdwing Music Mastered At – Sheffield Lab Matrix
This was Keith’s 3rd studio album and the first on his own label however Sparrow Records still handed international distribution. Keith was determined to get his music to the people at an affordable price or even free at his concerts. Yes he gave away free copies of this album for people who couldn’t afford the retail price. I was unable to find the retail price but it would be interesting to see as Keith heavily subsidized the album himself. A rather lengthy booklet was included with the record with song explanations, scripture discussion, and just general testimony from Keith. As for the album it is decidedly easy listening and Keith’s real skill was his song writing in my opinion. Notable people joining him on this album was Matthew Ward and Bob Dylan. It is reported that Keith was good friends with Dylan.
1 – So You Wanna Go Back To Egypt – 4:36
2 – Pledge My Head To Heaven – 3:53
3 – If You Love The Lord – 4:05
4 – Romans VII – 3:24
5 – Lies – 3:42
6 – I Want To Be More Like Jesus – 4:20
7 – Unless The Lord Builds The House – 3:56
8 – Oh Lord, You’re Beautiful – 4:17
9 – You Love The World – 2:36
10 – Grace By Which I Stand – 4:49
Art Direction, Design – Stan Evenson Design Inc.
Backing Vocals – Keith Green, Kelly Willard, Matthew Ward
Bass – Hadley Hockensmith
Drums – Bill Maxwell
Engineer – Bob Cotton, Gordon Shryock
Engineer [Second] – Billy Taylor, Peter Haden, Wally Duguid
Guitar – Hadley Hockensmith
Harmonica – Bob Dylan
Lead Vocals – Keith Green
Mastered By – Bernie Grundman
Organ – Harlan Rogers
Percussion, Congas – Alex Acuña
Piano – Keith Green
Producer – Bill Maxwell, Keith Green
Written-By – Keith Green, Kelly Willard (tracks: B1), Melody Green (tracks: A1, A3, B1, B2)
Toward Eternity is Matthew Ward’s debut album. It has a decidedly 70’s sound but the guitar work of Phil Keaggy (yes that Phil Keaggy) gave the album some appeal to those of us more interested in an 80’s sound.
This album is a who’s who of CCM music. Appearing on this album were, Phil Keaggy, Michael Omartian, as well as Keith Green.
A rather stange appearance on the album was Ray Parker, Jr. of Ghostbusters fame. Writing credits went to several people in addition to Matthew.
Point of trivia on this album is that 5 of the songs were written by Matthews sister, Anne (Ward) Herring and the album was produced and engineered by Buck Herring, Anne’s husband, Matthews brother in law.
1 – It’s All Right – 2:34
2 – Soft Spot – 3:42
3 – Noah’s Song – 3:56
4 – Till The Walls Fall Down – 2:29
5 – Gotta Do Better Than This – 3:23
6 – Your Love Came Over Me – 4:07
7 – Hold On – 3:10
8 – Angels Unaware – 2:26
9 – Summer Snow – 3:36
10 – The Vineyard – 2:18
Vocals – Matthew Ward
Bass – Abraham Laboriel
Drums – David Kemper
Guitar – Phil Keaggy
Percussion – Michael Omartian
Piano – Tom Keene
Design, Illustration – Larry McAdams
Lacquer Cut By – KPG
Photography By – David Pavol
Producer, Engineer – Buck Herring