Various – The Strait Tapes – Volume II – 1985

This is the second of a series of tapes that were published by Strait which was the Greenbelt Newspaper that came out Bi Monthly in the 80’s. This is the second in the series released in 1985. While there are a few less rare tracks this volume it makes up for it with quantity. 18 tracks is pretty darn good for a compilation cassette. I’ve listed below what album these tracks showed up on if they did. This compilation was also released in Australia but with some modifications. Missing were Sheila Walsh – Send Me, Phil and John – The Wasted Years, and Steve Scott – Sound of Waves. Added was a great track from Idea – Take Us. Strangely the cover for the Australian version actually showed that the Walsh and Phil and John track were on the cassette but they were not.

1 – Garth Hewitt – Oscar Romero (Alien Brain 1985)
2 – Mark Heard – Victims of the Age (Victims of the Age 1982)
3 – Daniel Amos – Home Permanent (Vox Humana 1984)
4 – Sheila Walsh – Send Me (Don’t Hide Your Heart 1985)
5 – Randy Stonehill – Love Beyond Reason (Love Beyond Reason 1985)
6 – Paul Field – Valley of Dry Bones (from Visions 1985)
7 – Larry Norman – Iron and Steel (from Quiet Night 1984)
8 – The Fat Band – Kansas City (from The Fat Band 7-inch 1983)
9 – Steve Scott – Sound of Waves (12” mix)
(Australian version only) 9 – Idea – Take Us (previously unreleased)
10 – Passion Polka – Fighting Alone (Obsessions EP 2011)
11 – Charlie Peacock – Lie Down in the Grass (Lie Down in the Grass 1985)
12 – Phil and John – The Wasted Years (extended remixed version from Count Me Out 1983)
13 – Xtras – Don’t Look Back (previously unreleased)
14 – Pieces – Robot System (Face 2 Face 1985)
15 – Leslie Phillips – Give’em All You Got (Dancing with Danger 1984)
16 – The Front – It’s Hard to Take (The Front 1985)
17 – Avalon – Flags (not The Aussie Avalon, released on 7″ in 1984)
18 – First Strike – Loneliness Kills (Rock of Offense 1984)

1 – Garth Hewitt – Oscar Romero – 4:12
2 – Mark Heard – Victims of the Age – 3:13
3 – Daniel Amos – Home Permanent – 3:00
4 – Sheila Walsh – Send Me – 3:30
5 – Randy Stonehill – Love Beyond Reason – 5:33
6 – Paul Field – Valley of Dry Bones – 3:03
7 – Larry Norman – Iron and Steel – 4:07
8 – The Fat Band – Kansas City – 2:47
9 – Steve Scott – Sound of Waves – 4:26
(Australian version only) 9 – Idea – Take Us – 3:08
10 – Passion Polka – Fighting Alone – 4:18
11 – Charlie Peacock – Lie Down in the Grass – 3:26
12 – Phil and John – The Wasted Years – 2:58
13 – Xtras – Don’t Look Back – 3:50
14 – Pieces – Robot System – 3:44
15 – Leslie Phillips – Give’em All You Got – 3:51
16 – The Front – It’s Hard to Take – 3:22
17 – Avalon – Flags – 4:22
18 – First Strike – Loneliness Kills – 3:38

Various – The Strait Tapes – Volume I

This is a rather odd one. The Strait Tapes were a series of at least 3 cassettes published by Strait which was the Greenbelt Newspaper that came out Bi Monthly in the 80’s. How they got the rights to these songs is completely baffling but they did and they put out these great cassettes. This is the first one of this series. It is a mix of stuff we know and stuff we don’t. No one is too sure what year this cassette came out as the tracks themselves are from all over but the best guess is 1985. I’ve listed below what album these tracks showed up on if they did. There are some really rare unreleased tracks here a couple B sides so this is a real special compilation. I look forward to finding the next 2 cassettes in this series.

Larry Norman – If You Don’t Love the Lord (1986 Rehearsal 4 Reality/different version)
Robin Lane – Hard Cover (1984 Heart Connection EP)
Steve Turner – I Looked Down (1982 - City Without Love)
Philip Bailey – The Wonders of His Love (1984 The Wonders Of His Love)
Jump the Nile – Innocence Abroad (unreleased, band only had one 7")
Ring of Fire – Brave Men Cry (unreleased, no info on band)
Bruce Cockburn – In the Falling Dark (1976 In the Falling Dark)
Maria Muldaur – There's Going To Be The Devil To Pay (1983 Sweet and Slow)
Randy Stonehill – Everything But Love (1985 Stonehill EP)
Press Any Key – Whisper On The Wind (1987 - Whisper On The Wind, different mix)
Garth Hewitt – Red Hot and Cooking (1982 B-side of The Hungry Wind single)
Interface – Memories (1984 Released as an A side single)

1 – Larry Norman – If You Don’t Love the Lord
2 – Robin Lane – Hard Cover
3 – Steve Turner – I Looked Down
4 – Philip Bailey – The Wonders of His Love
5 – Jump the Nile – Innocence Abroad
6 – Ring of Fire – Brave Men Cry
7 – Bruce Cockburn – In the Falling Dark
8 – Maria Muldaur – There’s Going To Be The Devil To Pay
9 – Randy Stonehill – Everything But Love
10 – Press Any Key – Whisper On The Wind
11 – Garth Hewitt – Red Hot and Cooking
12 – Interface – Memories

Larry Norman – Only Visiting This Planet – 1972

OVTP is part 1 of Larry’s trilogy, which contains his iconic songs that lasted throughout his career. He never stopped performing “Reader’s Digest” and “The Outlaw” in concerts. Also included is the second studio release of “I Wish We’d All Been Ready” which is his most famous song for people who don’t know who Larry was. The first was on Upon This Rock, released through Capitol Records before he started releasing music through his own channels. In its original form, these are protest songs and relationship songs intertwined. The setting is 1972 and Larry went into the studio with the ideas that were floating in the air in California. Larry’s desire to be as counter-cultural as the hippy movement, but as a Christian drives the content. The songs are highly contemporary musically, ranging from folky in “The Outlaw” to rock in “I Am The Six O’Clock News.” The content gets deeply personal in songs like “I’ve Got To Learn To Live Without You,” and “Pardon Me.” These songs were confusing for Christian music fans because they did not talk about Jesus. The refreshing part here was that Larry was actually willing to talk about human problems. This extended into his political and social protests in the rest of the songs. Larry makes no attempt to hide the Gospel in his music, but also makes no attempt to pretend that human issues don’t need to be addressed, spoken about, preached about and sung about. This is truly what made Larry stand out as an artist.

1 – Why Don’t You Look Into Jesus – 4:03
2 – The Outlaw – 3:55
3 – I’ve Got To Learn To Live Without You – 3:36
4 – Without Love You Are Nothing – 3:33
5 – I Wish We’d All Been Ready – 5:21
6 – Six O’Clock News – 6:06
7 – Great American Novel – 4:31
8 – Pardon Me – 3:38
9 – Why Should The Devil Have All The Good Music – 2:40
10 – Readers Digest – 2:42
11 – Oh, How I Love You –

Acoustic Guitar – Gordon Giltrap, Roger Hand
Arranged By [String Arrangements] – Chris Gunning
Backing Vocals – Rod Edwards, Roger Hand
Bass – John Wetton
Drums – Keith Smart
Engineer – Bill Price
Lead Guitar – Mickey Keen
Photography By – Pam Norman
Piano – Bob Brady, Larry Norman, Rod Edwards
Producer – Jon Miller, Rod Edwards, Roger Hand
Written-By – Larry Norman

Companies, etc.
Produced For – Triumvirate Productions
Produced For – Street Level Productions, Inc.
Phonographic Copyright ℗ – MGM Records, Inc.
Pressed By – H.V. Waddell Co.
Manufactured By – MGM Records, Inc.
Published By – Strawbed Music
Published By – Jace Love Music Pub. Co.
Published By – Beechwood Music Corp.

Larry Norman – One Night In Norway – 1991/2023

Larry’s brother has supplies us with another gem from the 90’s. It was recorded during a one month period when Larry toured Norway and Sweden. The band is made up of students or teachers at Vikens folkehøyskole Gjøvik Norway with the exception of Bjørn Gran and Urs Wenck-Wolff. Larry’s live releases aren’t usually known to have good audio but in this case the audio is fantastic. Because of this and the excellent choice of tracks this may very well be the best live recording of Larry. Note that the bandcamp download of this album has 5 additional tracks but is missing one track from the album due to silly Bandcamp policies. All tracks, album and Bandcamp, are included here.

1 – Twelve Good Men – 3:18
2 – Christmastime – 3:44
3 – I Am Waiting – Day-O – 2:16
4 – Six Sixty Six – 2:36
5 – If I Were A Singer – 4:09
6 – A Note From Mr. God – 4:08
7 – Diamonds – 1:15
8 – One Way – 3:14
9 – Strong Love, Strange Peace – 3:05
10 – I Am A Servant – 3:04
11 – Walking Backwards Down The Stairs – 3:08
12 – Why Don’t You Look Into Jesus – 3:44
13 – I Don’t Believe In Miracles – 3:47
14 – I Wish We’d All Been Ready – 7:27
15 – Sweet Song Of Salvation – 8:27
16 – The Dog And The Flower – 3:22
17 – He Really Loves You – 4:22
18 – Messiah – 5:10
19 – The Rock That Doesn’t Roll – 4:19

Bass – Jan Terje Haukeland
Cello – Siv Havåg
Choir – Astrid Kloster, Siri Gjære
Cover – Forma Design
Drums – Jan Inge “Jango” Nilsen
Guitar – Frode Håland, Kjetil Draugedalen
Harmonica – Bjørn Gran
Mastered By – Jason Carter
Photography By [Live Photo] – Arne Fred Solbekk
Project Manager – Morten Skjævestad
Promotion [Concert Promoter] – Georg Hansen
Synth – Gunnar Ekornås
Technician [Sound] – Oslo Lydverker
Viola – Urs Wenk-Wolff
Violin [Violin 1] – Elna Selle
Violin [Violin 2] – Camilla Bing-Jakobsen
Vocals Larry NOrman

Companies, etc.
Copyright © – Seaside Records
Copyright © – Stiftelsen Skjærgårdsgospel
Published By – Solid Rock Records

Larry Norman – Roll Away the Stone – 1980

After Larry was convinced to close Solid Rock Records he made his way to England with his father and started Phydeaux records. This was either the first or second album he released on that label. It’s a live album but were not really too sure where or when it was recorded and I don’t think even Larry knew. He printed on the album cover “This album contains ten songs from a three hour concert. It is reproduced exactly as the audience heard it, with no studio overdubs, no stereo enhancement, noise gates, etc. It is raw, real, and electronically unretouched.” As much as he tries to make the lack of production a selling point for the album I sincerely doubt the source material was capable of being remixed. I’m willing to bet it was a single track recorded right out of the mixing board. Anyway this is a great opportunity for us to hear some early Larry in his live environment.

1 – Jonny’s Blues – 3:03
2 – Why Don’t You Look Into Jesus – 4:53
3 – The Rock That Doesn’t Roll – 3:28
4 – I’ve Seached All Around The World – 3:34
5 – Watch What You’re Doing – 6:31
6 – Soul On Fire – 6:33
7 – Shot Down – 1:56
8 – Song For A Small Circle Of Friends – 3:09
9 – Why Should The Devil Have All The Good Music – 2:51
10 – Let That Tape Keep Rolling – 5:24
11 – I Wish We’d All Been Ready – 5:45

Bass Guitar – Dave Coy
Drums – Alex McDougall
Electric Guitar – Jon Linn
Guitar – Mark Heard
Piano – Tom Howard
Vocals, Written-By – Larry Norman

Companies, etc.
Copyright © – Phydeaux/Solid Rock Records

Larry Norman Featuring Alwyn Wall & Barratt Band – Larry Norman And His Friends On Tour – 1981

This live album was recorded at the Dominion Theatre In London on Dec 26th 1980. According to Larry, Cliff Richard, The Vapors, Vic Coppersmith, and several members of Eric Clapton’s band were in attendance. Alwyn Wall and the Barratt Band opened for Larry and stayed on to back Larry’s set. Larry released the album with side 1 having 5 tracks from the opening set and 4 tracks on Side 2 from Larry. Well actually the first pressing had 4 tracks but subsequent pressings actually had 6 tracks. In typical Larry form he did not redo the jacket to represent these extra tracks but instead put an insert in the album to explain. In his defense though redoing the Jacket would have cost a lot of money so I don’t fault him. I do fault his however for some of his editing choices. Some tracks are chopped off and the sound quality varies greatly from track to track. However this is all part of listening to a Larry production. The electronic release of the album includes 5 bonus tracks recorded at the Bremen Germany stop of the same tour. We have included those tracks for your listening pleasure.

1 – Barratt Band – The Only One – 3:43
2 – Barratt Band – Not The Way – 3:41
3 – Alwyn Wall – I’m Alright Jack (The Greed Song) – 3:55
4 – Alwyn Wall – Hold On – 3:46
5 – Alwyn Wall – Dreams On Sand – 6:05
6 – Larry Norman – I Feel Like Dying – 2:48
7 – Larry Norman – Leaving The Past Behind – 1:39
8 – Larry Norman – Why Can’t You Be Good – 4:31
9 – Larry Norman – A Note From Mr God – 3:46
10 – Larry Norman – Put Your Life Into His Hands – 3:19
11 – Larry Norman – I Wish We’d All Been Ready – 5:48
Bonus Tracks
12 – Larry Norman & Friends – Swing Low Sweet Chariot – 5:01
13 – Larry Norman – Watch What You’re Doing – 7:02
14 – Larry Norman – Feeling So Bad – 4:26
15 – Larry Norman – Sweet Sweet Song Of Salvation – 5:26
16 – Barratt Band – My Father’s House – 10:01

Larry Norman – Live at the Mac – 1998

Larry apparently released this album almost grudgingly because he did not have many decent live recordings from this era of his touring and there were bootlegs making the rounds that he didn’t like. Larry stopped distributing Roll Away The Stone (although he continued to encourage people to buy it if they could find it), and he considered Live At The Mac a better version of that. The combination of bad recordings and bad timing haunted Larry’s late 70s work. He was touring but never did get good recordings done with a full band. Later works like the Live At Flevo recordings made up for it in a way, but they are not the same as Larry in this era. To hear it as it was, all we have are some bootlegs and some primitive recordings. This concert was August 18, 1979 in Eugene, Oregon. This CD was released in 1998 through Solid Rock Records and apparently only 200 were made, although some later versions were evidently sold by Solid Rock that were done up as CD-R with the same packaging.

1 – Why Don’t You Look Into Jesus – 4:58
2 – I’ve Searched All Around The World – 5:33
3 – Soul On Fire – 6:48
4 – Watch What You’re Doing – 8:36
5 – Let The Tape Keep Rolling – 5:00
6 – UFO – 10:16
7 – The Outlaw / If God Is My Father – 8:26
8 – Song For A Small Circle Of Friends – 3:37
9 – Shot Down – 2:41
10 – Why Should The Devil Have All The Good Music – 2:44
11 – The Rock That Doesn’t Roll / Exit – 3:25
12 – Lonely By Myself – 6:15

Larry Norman & People! – The Israel Tapes – 1980

This album is generally known as Larry Norman – The Israel Tapes, but it is really Larry Norman and People!, and the record calls itself “The Israel Tapes 1974 AD.” Not much difference really, but the labelling and the timing are both important. The release came out from Phydeaux Records in 1980, after Larry had established his own distribution company, which was primarily a mail order business run out of San Jose. Larry added some of the People! recordings to his catalog and so this is the first time some of these recordings were made public. The musicianship of this group is excellent, and has distinctly different characteristics than the group of studio musicians he worked with in the 1970s and 80s. This concert was done at UCLA for the benefit of The Israeli Fund. The Recording quality is not great, but for a 1974 live record it’s passable. What’s noteworthy here is that this 1974 live performance included a lot of songs that eventually became part of Larry’s core material. The album consists of songs from Upon This Rock as well as the Trilogy, along with a couple of others. This seems to be a reunion concert of sorts. Larry left People! several years prior, and here they are performing with him on subsequent songs. There are 2 different versions of “I Love You,” neither of which is quite the one that appeared on the In Another Land album in 1974, although you can hear the progression that got it there. “I Am The Six O’Clock News” was an anchor song on 1972’s Only Visiting This Planet, and here we get a slower, grittier version of it. “Sweet Song of Salvation” and “Forget Your Hexagram” get some updated arrangements from their original Upon This Rock versions, with great contributions from this band. All in all, a good spin on some classic Larry songs.

1 – Fly, Fly, Fly – 4:47
2 – I Love You (1967) – 4:36
3 – I Love You (1974) – 3:43
3 – I Am The Six O’Clock News – 5:59
4 – Lonely By Myself – 4:08
6 – Baroquen Spirits – 5:32
7 – You Knew What You Were Doing – 4:57
8 – Forget Your Hexagram – 3:49
9 – I’ve Searched All Around The World – 3:05
10 – Sweet Song Of Salvation – 5:21

Larry Norman – Back To America – 1985

This EP was released in 1985 when Larry made his big announcement that he was moving back to America after spending a lot of time working in Europe.

Between about 1980 and 1985 he worked with a lot of artists from UK and Western Europe, including Alwyn Wall, Bryn Haworth, Lyrix, Q-Stone and a lot of others. Larry really wanted to find a home for himself again where he grew up, on the West Coast.

Presumably he was hoping for a warm welcome this time after having a hard time releasing some of the music he wanted to put out in the 1970s.

The live version of “Messiah” showed off a mature sound compared to his early rock days. “It’s Only Today That Counts” is one type of prophetic song that Larry liked to write, urging people to make take life very seriously.

Side two is music and interview intertwined. Larry never gave up any opportunity to get his own words in about his own words. Rather than wait for interview requests to come in, he put this record out there with his side of the interview recorded. All that was necessary for anyone to use it was to set up the questions by either introducing them, or by fake-interviewing Larry using this material.

Here are some excerpts from the interview portions:

“I’m coming back to America, with the Young Lions. We’re going to do 200 concerts, go to all 50 states. There’s anew album coming out.
there’s a live album and video from my foreign tours. That will be available next year.”

“When I was nine I got real serious about music and started writing about my feelings, my beliefs, things that were happening to me and my friends at school.”

“When Elvis Presley came along, he wasn’t doing anything new. He was just doing Black gospel music, only instead of talking about his saviour he talked about his ‘baby.'” Rock’n’roll came from the Church. It belongs to the Church. Rock’n’roll seems now to be providence of non-believers while the Church sits on the side and denounces rock’n’roll, says that it’s ungodly music and that if you play it backwards you hear secret satanic messages.”

“Certainly the lifestyles of the people performing rock’n’roll doesn’t coincide with the moral overviews of the Christian church but rock’n’roll was Black music and it came from the early American Black church. and I don’t know why we should let anyone steal it from us. It belongs to us I think we should steal it back.”

1 – Messiah (Live)
2 – It’s Only Today That Counts
Side 2 – Interview
If The Bombs Fall
Letter To A Friend
Woman Of God (Proverbs 31)
Soul On Fire (1968 Version) and more.

Bass – Charly Norman
Drums – Kenny Bam Boom
Guitar, Keyboards – Larry Norman
Lead Guitar – Jon Linn
Rhythm Guitar – Bill Romansky
Written-By – Larry Norman

Companies, etc.
Phonographic Copyright (p) – Stress Records
Copyright (c) – Stress Records
Published By – Six Blue Lions
Mastered At – Sheffield Lab Matrix – △11008

Jacket Front
Jacket Back
Side 1
Side 2

Steve Camp – Start Believin’ – 1980

This is one of the early albums that set the stage for Steve Camp’s 1980’s popularity. His recording career spanned from 1978 through 2002. The track “Under His Love” was co-written by Steve Camp and Larry Norman. The two would cross paths many times over their respective careers and there are a few examples of them appearing on stage together and recording each other’s songs. In addition to working with Larry Norman, it seems to me that Steve has an uncanny vocal similarity. Not only the tone of his voice, but the way he expresses it has a strong similarity to the way Larry sounded. No wonder they were able to work together easily.

1 – The Feeling Is Happening – 6:02
2 – You Are The Rainbow – 3:12
3 – Under His Love – 3:35
4 – Easy Livin’ (Under The Sun) – 3:05
5 – Ambassador In Chains – 3:51
6 – Start Believin’ – 4:46
7 – Do They Have To Grow Up? – 3:56
8 – I’ll Always Need You Lord – 5:47
9 – Bobby – 5:19
10 – Psalm 131 – 2:10

Steve Camp – Songwriter, Vocals, Production Assistant
Jack I. Baron – Tenor Saxophone
Big Foot – Feet Stomps
Phillip Blum – Cello
Sol A. Bobrov – Violin
Phil Bonono – Additional Engineering
Leonard Chausow – Cello
Dale Clevenger – French Horn
Gary Elghammer – Additional Engineering
Richard Royce Ferrin – Viola
Ronald Friedman – Trumpet
Joseph Golan – Violin
Tommy Hanson – Additional Engineering
John W. Haynor – Trombone
Tom Howell – French Horn
Arthur Hoyle – Trumpet, Fluegel Horn
Russell Iverson – Trumpet
Harold D. Klatz – Viola
Robert Lewis – Trumpet, Fluegel Horn
Paul Libman – Production Assistant, Songwriter
Arthur F. Linser – Trombone
Samuel Magad – Violin
Glenn Meadows – Mastered
Rodger Moulton – Viola
Hank Neuberger – Recorded and Mixed
Larry Norman – Songwriter
David Isaiah Radford – Songwriter
Arnold Roth – Violin
Kenneth G. Soderblom – Alto Saxophone, Tenor Saxophone
Fred Spector – Violin
Morris Butch Stewart – Producer, Songwriter
The Chicago Hands – Hand claps and Finger Snaps
Cyrill J. Touff – Trombone

Companies, etc.
Phonographic Copyright ℗ – Word, Inc.
Copyright © – Word, Inc.
Mastered At – Masterfonics
Recorded At – Chicago Recording Company

Jacket Front
Jacket Back
Sleeve Front
Sleeve Back
Side 1
Side 2