Forty years ago Garth’s music and song lyrics challenged what had become the established way of doing things within the Christian church in the UK. Firstly, he was a part of the movement within Christian music away from a particularly “sacred” sound, not afraid to bring Christian lyrics towards the mainstream popular style of music. This bridged the culture gap for his own and following generations between the church and the world in which they lived, and helped many within those generations find a way to explore their spirituality without the need to deny their inherent culture. It did also bring condemnation from some within the established Christian churches who felt that these musicians were endangering the purity of the church by in some way secularising it, so it was not always an easy road but there was growing support for this new attitude within the church so it was not entirely lonely.
STREET children from Africa, South America, India and Europe playing football in a Durban area last March; it’s the Deloitte Street Child World Cup, and it shows off the human potential of children failed by every social and political system. Durban itself has 2,000 street children; the Umthombo organisation, founded five years ago, helps keep them safe and fed. Read more…
Garth’s first album, “The Lion And The Lamb”, was recorded in 1972 at Air Studios, London with producer Pete Bye. Released in’73, “The Lion And The Lamb” was succeeded the following year by “I Never Knew Life Was In Full Technicolor ‘Till I Saw It On The Silver Screen”, produced by Tony Hooper from The Strawbs. “Love Song For The Earth”, released in 1976, was produced by Bryn Haworth. Bryn’s style of playing, on slide guitar, mandolin and backing vocals, complemented Garth’s style, and although this is the only album Bryn produced for Garth, he appears on many of his other albums. I took the photos and designed this album. It was the first of Garth’s albums to be released in the States, but unfortunately the American record company said that his picture wasn’t suitable because “Christians smile and shave” – we had to have another photo session to get Garth looking suitably Christian! Read more…
people Garth has befriended over the years and who have been able to share their struggles with people in the West through the songs Garth sings. His album titles read like a gazetteer of his musical ministry: Bethlehem, Gaza, Palestine, The Dalit Drum and a series of albums called Journeys: Journeys Africa, Journeys Holy Land, Journeys Asia and Journeys Latin America.
Sir Cliff Richard, who sang Garth’s song ‘A World of Difference’ at Live Aid, said, Read more…
‘Singing hymns of liberation
As we journey on the road
Let justice roll – let freedom come
With deeds of love and liberation’
Hymns of Liberation