The Music Revolution

Just as the Lit Revolution was born in 1973 and really grew in 1974, so its twin, the Music Revolution, which put the message into music for the masses, was growing and going at the same time!

By July 1974, Dad was writing to his flock, “Our greatest present push and potential in reaching the youth of the world on a rapid worldwide scale is in the field of music and even dramatic entertainment, even as we began so long ago in our first little club in California. Again, music is our miracle to attract the young, along with dramatic presentation of our message ... only now, we’re doing it on a much larger scale.”

It was indeed a much larger scale. By 1972 the COG’s musicians had composed hundreds of songs, and when the COG left America that year, they scattered over the whole world to play them.

It was this truly God-inspired music that made the Revolution what it is today. Beginning with Aaron’s “Luke 7:34,” Abraham’s “Cry of Revolution,” and Jeremiah’s “Message of Jeremiah,” to Amminadab’s “You Gotta Be a Baby,” Tabitha’s “Mountain Children,” and the new songs of the Spirit being written today.

From the very beginning, when the Revolution went out on the battlefield to conquer the hearts of men, they went singing. They didn’t go out trying to be famous musicians or have their audiences oohing and aahing over their music, but to sock it to them with the Spirit of God, and make them mad, sad, or glad!

They just went around on the streets trying to help the kids, playing for the glory of God, and if they needed to get “discovered” in order to further get out the message, God saw to it that it happened.

When they went to Canada in the summer of 1969, the director of amateur programming at the World’s Fair “discovered” them. Faith said, “We didn’t have any electric guitars; all we had were a few acoustic guitars, a couple of tambourines, and the Spirit of God, and we sang all over that Fair.”

When they were in a Houston Park during the early winter of 1970 and living on the road, a local television “discovered” them. They stood in a line of sackcloth beside the tents and Jeremiah sang “A Line of Sackcloth” while the television camera zoomed in on the grim-faced vigilers one after the other, and it went out over all of Texas as a powerful witness!

In January 1971, while living in the L.A. mission, it was the singing that captivated the news media, even from as far away as France. After the French television crew had left, Faith told the brethren what an impact their singing had had: “You were sitting there singing, some of you with your eyes closed, all wrapped up in the Spirit, and it showed on your faces, and that’s what those newsmen recorded on film. They couldn’t even hear all the words some of the time, but it was the Spirit that gave them the message. One of the crewmen said, ’I’ve got goose bumps all over me. There’s something in that room!’

“And there was, brother; it was the music of the Spirit, and let’s not forget it! Let’s not take it for granted, either, because whether you know it or not, this music is going all around the world!”

And that’s exactly what happened! Only five months later, guitars in hand, Faith and her little team were winning the hearts of the Europeans with their music and sample of love. And that miraculous medium of song and love was the key that each of the COG’s brave pioneers used to open the door to every country.

Abiezer wrote from Vietnam in March 1972: “One of our biggest worries here has been wondering how we will reach these people. God is doing it! ... We went to the Saigon Zoo to witness and it was HEAVY, HEAVY! We’d just strum a little on our guitars and there would be a crowd of 15–20 young people around us. We’d sing them a song and then witness to them. There was always someone in the crowd who would translate what we were saying into Vietnamese. Even though we don’t know the language and sing really lousy, God’s Spirit falls and it gets heavy. ... These people don’t trust Americans—look what we have done to them—but God speaks to their hearts and we can see the conviction. One boy asked Jesus into his heart while three of his friends watched him. ... We witness to 50–75 people a day when we go to the zoo.”

And that’s the way it went in every country: Music was the key!

Watchman wrote of one experience a couple of days after arriving in Costa Rica in August of 1972: “That night we were invited by some American missionaries, long-time friends of Jeremiah’s family, who took us to a small church outside of town where we sang and gave the message with some favorable results. As we walked out of the church, we noticed up the hill an enormous dance hall packed with kids. The Holy Ghost led us straight to the owner, to whom we said we were a travelling singing group who wanted to entertain his customers for free. He then heartily agreed, and as we stepped toward the front, he stopped the music and turned on the lights and all the kids applauded.

“After a word of introduction we played and began to sing ‘The Children of God Are on Their Way’ in Spanish, as all looked on with intense interest. After the first song a big group of kids left their tables and came to the front, gathering around us as we began to sing again, ‘It’s Nice to be Here’ in Spanish. As we were about to pair everybody off for some folk dances, the owner, fearing for his business, turned off the lights and started up the juke box again, nearly causing a riot!

“But the hungry sheep had come up front and we turned around and began to witness to the large numbers of kids which had gathered around each of us. After some more witnessing and giving our address and reaping a harvest of souls, we left the dance hall with many invitations to return soon.”

When Amminadab and the Gypsy Band landed in the Caracas, Venezuela, airport in January of 1973, they immediately broke out their guitars and began singing “You Gotta Be a Baby.” Said Amminadab, “The people in the airport really responded and began singing and clapping, and an airport receptionist walked up and gave us all a little sticker which said ‘Venezuela Is Yours’.”

This proved to be prophetic! In only a month’s time they had been given the use of a seven-room house and a Land Rover, had appeared on television eight times, witnessing to tens of thousands, and were playing for thousands personally every week—opening doors to all kinds of contacts that really helped to establish the COG in Venezuela.

But it was later that year of 1973 that the music really exploded—beginning in France!

French Joseph, the first disciple won to the COG in Europe, learned the Revolution’s songs and sang them all over Europe. In fact, he and Jonas singing became such an event that they even appeared on some tourist postcards as a typical example of hippies singing on Dam Square in Amsterdam.

In mid-’73, Joseph returned to France to help establish a colony in a cellar of one of Notre Dame’s buildings. Shortly afterward, he was invited to appear on the television show “Les Dossiers de L’Ecran,” which would be discussing the hippy movement and introducing Groseille, a young psychologist who had dropped out to be a hippy and had written a book about it.

As the show reached a conclusion, after heated discussions and Groseille’s frustrated outbursts to different panel members like, “I could show you my ass!” Joseph picked up his guitar, and as others were yelling “Stop! Stop him!” he started singing “You Gotta Be a Baby”. It was a spontaneous, crazy thing to do, but Jacques Monty, a French singing star and producer was watching the show and thought the song was a hit. Jacques was an atheist, but soon found faith after finding Joseph and the Children of God in their little community cellar (as did also Groseille, now Mary Magdelene).

Jacques wanted to produce “You Gotta Be a Baby”; so on October 15, he managed to assemble 40 Children of God from all over Europe in a Paris studio. Led by Joseph, Faith and Jeremiah, they recorded “You Gotta Be a Baby” and “Alleluia”.

“You Gotta Be a Baby,” sung in French, English, Italian and Spanish, was a hit, and Les Enfants de Dieu and their message of salvation became famous throughout France. They soon followed their first hit with another one, the hit of the year for all of France for 1974, “My Love Is Love,” sung by Jonas, the “little brother with a big voice,” as Faith called him.

To make a long story short, in Faith’s own words, “We went from a little group, singing our happiness in the streets of Paris, to a hit record selling over 300,000 copies, to a live stage show and television and radio shows in just one year.” And the message was out all over France and Western Europe, and thousands were being led into the kingdom as a result!

And France wasn’t unique in the music miracles business. A mere two weeks after Amminadab arrived in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in December of 1973, they appeared on two television shows, then more television appearances, and they eventually met Fernando, who worked for Polydor Records and who got turned on to the COG. By July 1974, COG musicians and singers from all over South America were in a Rio studio recording an entire album. And the single “Aleluya” became a hit throughout all Brazil!

Soon the band was playing before thousands in concert and at charity benefits, and by Christmas that year Os Meninos de Deus were the star performers at a special Christmas show for children, playing before nearly 250,000 in the world’s second-largest stadium.

Their hit song “Aleluya” from the album “Squeeze, Don’t Jerk” was awarded “Development of the Year” at a “Best of ‘74” award banquet. And by March 1975, they were already well into recording their second album, “Love Never Fails,” as well as making almost weekly appearances on television. The Children of God were on their way!