Tag Archives: Amy Winehouse

Pete Ham of Bad Finger (Part 4 of series on “27 Club”)

Amy Winehouse died at age 27 and unfornately joined the “27 club” which is made of famous rockers that died at age 27. Pete Ham was a member of Bad Finger which was one of my favorite groups that I followed. “Come and get it” was my favorite song of theirs.

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Badfinger perform a lipsync to their song Without You – made most famous by Harry Nilsson, Mariah Carey, Il Divo, Shirley Bassey, Clay Aiken, Heart, and even Frank Sinatra did this onstage. Pete Ham and Tom Evans wrote it. Ham also wrote Baby Blue, Day After Day, Name Of The Game, and Lonely You. Great site on badfinger http://www.badfingerlibrary.com

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Badfinger – Come and get it 1970

Badfinger – Baby Blue (Kenny Rogers Show 1972)

If ever a band was cursed by good fortune, it was Badfinger. The first band signed to Apple Records, they scored several hit singles right out of the gate. But it's no secret that the Beatles were better musicians than label heads, and soon their protégés were adrift in a sea of bad contracts and diminishing returns. The low point came when a crooked business manager began withholding money from Ham shortly after he'd bought a house and shortly before the birth of his daughter. Combined with what he perceived to be his failure as a recording artist and the intractability of his business affairs, his inability to earn money led Ham to despair. The band's most distinctive singer and one of its primary songwriters hanged himself in his garage on April 24, 1975, three days shy of his 28th birthday. (To make a sad story sadder: Ham's bandmate Tom Evans also hanged himself, eight years later.) (Paul W. Bailey/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via AP Images)

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Paul W. Bailey/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via AP Images

If ever a band was cursed by good fortune, it was Badfinger. The first band signed to Apple Records, they scored several hit singles right out of the gate. But it’s no secret that the Beatles were better musicians than label heads, and soon their protégés were adrift in a sea of bad contracts and diminishing returns. The low point came when a crooked business manager began withholding money from Ham shortly after he’d bought a house and shortly before the birth of his daughter. Combined with what he perceived to be his failure as a recording artist and the intractability of his business affairs, his inability to earn money led Ham to despair. The band’s most distinctive singer and one of its primary songwriters hanged himself in his garage on April 24, 1975, three days shy of his 28th birthday. (To make a sad story sadder: Ham’s bandmate Tom Evans also hanged himself, eight years later.)

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I highly recommend Bill Muehlenberg’s website. He looks into modern culture from a Christian perspective. I wanted to share with you a great article he wrote recently concerning Amy Winehouse.

Winehouse and Westbrook: A Tale of Two Celebs

As everyone now knows, troubled singer Amy Winehouse passed away on Saturday. She was as famous for her drug and alcohol-plagued life as her musical career. The English singer-songwriter had a short but controversial run with fame as a musician.

While it is still somewhat early to state with any sort of certainty, it seems her death was due to her on-going struggles with substance abuse, and perhaps to some mental-health problems she was also dealing with. The talented singer who was also known for her foul-mouth was born into a Jewish home.

But she seems to have moved beyond her religious roots. And as many have already noted, her death at just 27 years of age puts her into a club of other famous rock stars and musicians who also died at that age, often due to similar problems. Consider this short list of some of the more well known examples of this:

-Brian Jones (Rolling Stones), died July 1969, drug related
-Jimi Hendrix, died September 1970, drug overdose
-Janis Joplin, died October 1970, drug overdose
-Jim Morrison (Doors), died July 1971, drug overdose
-Kurt Cobain (Nirvana), died April 1994, suicide

Many other lesser known musicians have also passed away at age 27. One has to ask just what is it about the rock star and celebrity culture that seems to lead to such tragic and untimely deaths, due to such reckless lifestyles. It probably comes down to a combination of factors as young people seek to deal with their newfound fame and fortune.

It seems that such hard living, hard rocking and hard partying lifestyles are not very helpful to health and longevity. But while not everyone will be familiar with Winehouse and her work, perhaps even fewer people will be aware of Danniella Westbrook and her work.

I for one was not aware of her until I saw a news report about her in today’s press. It seems that she too was another wild, drug-taking celeb who was on a path of self-destruction. By her own description, she too was headed for an early grave.

The English actress was heading down the celebrity highway to an early exit, but unlike the other famous names mentioned above, she was rescued by a divine encounter. A relationship with Christ has turned her life around. Here is how the story covers this radical transformation:

“Danniella Westbrook, who starred as Samantha Mitchell in award-winning soap drama Eastenders which is shown on UKTV, said she is dedicating the rest of her life to the evangelical The Sanctuary in Westminster, California, after being ‘saved by Jesus Christ.’ Pop star Katy Perry’s parents Keith and Mary Hudson are pastors at the church. ‘Gucci and Prada used to be my God. Now I have given my life to the Lord,’ Westbrook, whose nose was ravaged by snorting cocaine, told the Mirror in the UK.

“‘If you had told me two years ago that I was going to be Christian, I would have laughed. I used to tell people, “I’m way past saving”.’ Westbrook quit Eastenders and moved with her husband to California where the couple were introduced to former drug addict and professional skateboarder turned pastor, Jay Haizlip, by mutual friends. Haizlip is senior pastor of The Sanctuary.

“‘The first time I came to this church, I felt something so spiritual and amazing, I wanted to cry,’ 37-year-old Westbrook said. ‘After a few visits I found myself walking up to the altar to ask the Lord for forgiveness for my sins. It was an incredible experience. I have realised that there have been things I have struggled with, like guilt, that I would have never found a solution for. Because there are things that a therapist cannot give me – that I can only get from Jesus Christ.’

“Westbrook, who made repeated suicide attempts when addicted to cocaine and saw her weight plummet to 38kg (6 stone). She says she would have spent $375,000 on cocaine. ‘I feel that me working on EastEnders and becoming a Christian might be God’s way of leading people to the Lord,’ she said.”

Wow, that is quite a story, and quite a contrast to the life of Winehouse, who as far as we know, never had such a life-changing encounter with the risen Christ. Jesus Christ is in the business of changing lives, and setting people free from their destructive addictions and harmful lifestyles.

It is a pity that more troubled and needy celebs and pop stars have not realised the truths which Danniella has, and have allowed a loving Father to help redeem their messed up lives. God yearns to break into these lives and turn them around by his power and grace.

Please keep Danniella in prayer. It sounds like she is a rather new Christian, and there will be lots of pressure put on her to go back to her old destructive ways. Pray that she grows in her faith and develops her powerful testimony even further, becoming a beacon for others to find hope and new life in Christ.

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Jim Morrison spiritual search comes up empty (Part 1 of series on “27 Club”)

Jim Morrison – Feast Of Friends – (The Doors Documentary) (1969) (Paul Ferrara) 1/4

I was saddened by the recent death of Amy Winehouse and her inclusion into the “27 Club.” This series I am starting today looks at the search that each one of these entertainers were on during their lives. Today I look at Jim Morrison of the Doors.

The Religious Affiliation of
Jim Morrison
great American musician

From: James Riordan, Stone: The Controversies, Excesses, and Exploits of a Radical Filmmaker, Hyperion: New York, NY (1995), page 340:

[Val] Kilmer’s reaction seems to be one of relief that the project [The Doors] was over, but as far as Morrison goes, he too gained a more profound understanding. “He had a sincere search,” he says of Morrison. “He may have chosen some of the wrong tools, but I think he tried to keep open an avenue of hope through spirituality. But I also think he was a bit of a cop-out because he was deathly frightened of committing to a practice, a condition, a way to behave, something to live for or live out of. I think cool was very important to him, and I’ve always battled that vanity. I think I’ve found through playing this character an opportunity to reexperience some of my life, to reevaluate. It seems to have strengthened things I have always believed . . . in God, and a reality that’s a foundation for living. To put yourself on the line, to confront that . . . that fear.”

Jim Morrison – Feast Of Friends – (The Doors Documentary) (1969) (Paul Ferrara) 2/4

jim morrison

1. Jim Morrison

was there anything that morrison lacked? the epitome of rock stardom, perfect symmetrical chiselled features, insanely cool, leather pants and pirate shirts, a big beautiful bellicose baritone of a voice, unparalleled charisma and a wild side of pure unfettered freedom that unfortunately led to a very short career and an early death. a creative visionary who led the doors, which could go down as the quirkiest “big band” of all time. if you listen to the instrumentation and their very peculiar songwriting style it almost sounded as if “the carnival was in town”. yet they could be the “pound for pound” choice for bands with the most hits in ratio to their short career. they were only around for a few years but they contributed so much to our musical landscape.

as much of a creative collaborative force as the doors were, it was morrison that made them cool. he was also a sex god for the ages, and must have enjoyed his short time here immensely what with the freewheeling, free lovin 60′s in full flight.

a drug and alcohol user of copious amounts which will certainly become a common thread throughout this list, james douglas morrison flamed out in a bathtub in paris at the tender age of 27.

truly one of the most iconic front men to ever pick up a mike, a pure pagan, the lizard king will never be forgotten. long live the king!

essential listening: debut album, LA woman, strange days (the doors)

Jim Morrison – Feast Of Friends – (The Doors Documentary) (1969) (Paul Ferrara) 3/4

Jim Morrison of The Doors

Hi Jane,

Thanks for writing and sharing your opinions. I hope your heart is open to our response. I read your email and still have no doubt in my mind, that Jim Morrison was steeped in the occult; he was being manipulated by demonic forces to do Satan’s bidding. Personally, I believe the evidence is more than overwhelming. Even Morrison’s biographers admit that Jim Morrison was involved in the occult and in the spirit world.

Jane, you wrote:

“As far as The Doors’ exposé is concerned, to begin with, you were not entirely forthright with the quotation from Wilderness. You posted “…an appearance of the devil on a Venice canal. Running, I saw Satan.” In actuality it reads “…an appearance of the devil on a Venice canal. Running, I saw a Satan or Satyr, moving beside me, a fleshy shadow of my secret mind. Running. Knowing.”

Before I comment on this, later on in your email you acknowledged that Morrison believed that spirits possessed him. His repeated identification with Satan and satanic imagery, whether it is in regard to the inspiration of his music or antichrist position, is quite revealing. The fact that he mentions a “Satyr” along with “the devil [and] Satan” does not detract from our point that he identified with dark satanic forces, but accentuates it all the more. Morrison’s usage of a Satyr reveals more than a poetic flair, but reflects Morrison’s knowledge of Bacchius occult ritual and his own experiences, along with how he interpreted them.

Jim Morrison, Hell & the Resurrection

Jim Morrison knew the truth and rejected it; he preferred temporal fame, power and eternal torment in hell, the house of detention, rather than eternal life and the resurrection of the righteous. Morrison sings:

Jim Morrison

“Cancel my subscription to the.. resurrection. Send my credentials to the house of detention I got some friends inside…”

Demonic spirit entities possess human beings not only in an effort to destroy them, as was the case with Jim Morrison, but to also influence the masses. The Scripture reveals that Satan himself was created with musical abilities, as were the angels (Isaiah 14; Ezekiel 28; Job 38 and Revelation 5 ). Such spirits use music to seduce us and teach demonic doctrines:

“Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will depart from the faith by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons,” –1 Tim. 4:1

The apostle Paul warned:

“Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.” –Ephesians 6:10-12

Morrison’s music, sadly, was used to seduce and indoctrinate his audiences into utter tragic lifestyles. Along with other rock gods, Morrison led millions of impressionable youth into destruction through his advocacy of drugs, sexual perversion, the occult and violence. When describing the Doors’ music, Morrison said, “Right now I’m more interested in the dark side of life, the evil thing, the dark side of the moon, the night-time.” Morrison also said, “I am interested in anything about revolt, disorder, chaos, especially activity that seems to have no meaning.” At times, Morrison would tell his young impressionable fans while in concert, “There are no rules; there are no limits.” This was a mere echo of Satanist Aleister Crowley’s satanic maxim, “Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law.”

Jim Morrison & Satanist Aleister Crowley

Aleister Crowley

It is not hard to surmise where Morrison’s loyalties lie when we realize that he paid homage to Satanist Aleister Crowley on the cover of the Doors 13 album. On this cover, we see Jim Morrison and the other members of the Doors huddled around a bust of Satanist, Aleister Crowley. Crowley was a confessed Satanist who hated the Lord Jesus Christ declaring, “with my hawk’s head I peck out the eyes of Jesus as he hangs upon the cross,” and giving his allegiance to Satan:

“I bind my blood in Satan’s hands, all this that lieth betwixt my hands, too thee, the Beast, and thy control, I pledge me; body, mind, and soul” –Aleister Crowley, Satanic Extracts, Black Lodge Publishing, The Estate of Aleister Crowley, 1991, p. 1

Jane, I am not sure how you would even attempt to exonerate Morrison’s exaltation of Aleister Crowley and his teachings. Crowley taught repeatedly the sacrifice of children to Satan. He stated:

“For the highest spiritual working one must accordingly choose that victim which contains the greatest and purest force. A male child of perfect innocence and high intelligence is the most satisfactory and suitable victim.” –Aleister Crowley, Magick: In Theory and Practice, 1973, p. 219

In our exposé, we show an audio clip of Morrison speaking of sacrificing to the gods, which we have seen really are demons. This is not to say that Morrison ever made such sacrifices, but he glorified the idea and participated in a Wiccan wedding ceremony, wherein he smeared blood all over his girlfriend. Incidentally, Gerald Gardner, who started Wicca was a member of Crowley’s O.T.O., and met with Crowley for guidance when he organized the ceremonial magick of Wicca. He developed the Wiccan rede. “An it harm none, do what thou wilt,” which was a kinder, gentler form of Crowley’s earlier slogan, “Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law”; it was sure to gather more adherents under the guise of a kinder and gentler form of Satanism, at least from Gardner and Crowley’s perspective. Crowley also taught that one was to sacrifice little girls to Satan, and mutilate them by dismembering them and writing the names of different demon gods on their lifeless limbs.

Jane, you state of a clip we use of Morrison:

“The media is the message, and the message is me,” [that we use it] as if Jim was referring to himself. He said that during an interview with Tony Thomas of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation in 1970 (Available on CD at The Doors website). The two of them were discussing music; Jim was saying he enjoyed blues and early rock and roll.”

Jane, I am sorry, but this is another example of where you misjudge us while not having all of the facts. First of all, we simply play a clip without any of our own comment there. We found the clip from a pro Doors video that only plays that part of the clip. Moreover, the context in the interview itself bares out that Morrison applies the saying to himself and believes others should do the same. He says,

Jim Morrison

“What everyone should say is, ‘the medium is the message, and the message is me.’ That’s the answer, is for everyone to…uh…you’re asking for an answer, the answer is for everyone to stand up and say, ‘I’m me,’ and be fully aware of that fact and let everyone else know it, that you are yourself and express it.”

Obviously, Jim Morrison concurs with the statement and is pushing his own personal philosophy on others. Obviously, Morrison knew he was an icon and that he himself was a message and in many ways he played this role to the hilt and preached his diabolical and destructive views from his shaman pulpit which was the concert stage. Morrison was well aware that he and the Doors were a huge influence upon his fans, and in the same interview states, “they’re being programmed by their radios,” and to the degree that the Doors were getting airplay was the degree in which they too were programming their fans along with albums, concerts, and interviews. Sadly as we shall see such programming by so many rock stars, Morrison included has had a devastating affect on our culture.

Jim Morrison & the Family

I just talked to a dear sister in the Lord, named Rosalind, who last week shared her heart wrenching story with me. She grew up in Watts in Los Angeles and was abandoned by her mother who she has seen, sadly, only a couple of times in her life. She told me that her mother was deluded into actually believing that Jim Morrison was a prophet. I could not help but think this was interesting timing in light of your letter defending him. She said that her mother bought into the lifestyle that Jim Morrison was glorifying to the impressionable and easily led hippie youth culture. Morrison’s lies and Crowleyan philosophy ended up destroying her mother and would be family. This should not be a great shock as Satanist Aleister Crowley who influenced Morrison said that “The family” is “public enemy number one.” Thankfully, Rosalind’s grandmother raised her and led her to the Lord Jesus Christ. Rosalind ended up becoming a social worker in Los Angeles and has since gone on to marry and begin a family of her own. Thankfully, she did not follow Jim Morrison but rather found true freedom that comes through knowing Jesus Christ, the Son of God! I hope and pray her mother finds that same freedom and they are united in the future.

No doubt, as Crowley taught Morrison in many ways treated his immediate family as public enemy number one. Morrison shut his parents totally out of his life. Even though his father had paid for his schooling at UCLA, he refused to talk to him after he became a rock star. In a dire attempt to talk to her son, Jim Morrison’s mother attended one of his concerts, which Jim Morrison closed by singing “The End.” According to Doors biographer, Jerry Hopkins, in No One Gets Out of Here Alive, when he sang the words about wanting to kill his father and have sex with his mother, “Father, ‘Yes son’, I want to kill you, Mother…I want to…f@#$ you”, Morrison “gave his mother a vacant stare, and then he screamed again, this time showing his teeth” (Jerry Hopkins, No One Gets Out of Here Alive).

Morrison’s Tragic End

The fifth commandment is to honor our parents and with it comes the promise of long life:

“Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long in the land that the LORD your God is giving you” –Exodus 20:12

Tragically, so many rock stars have died young because of their rebellion against authority, whether it be God’s or parental. God’s Word declares:

“But You, O God, will bring them down to the pit of destruction; Men of bloodshed and deceit will not live out half their days. But I will trust in You.” –Psalm 55:23

Jim Morrison

Sadly, Jim Morrison bought into Satan’s deception and his life ended at the young age of 27. Jesus Christ said that Satan is a murderer and the father of lies (John 8:44 ). Morrison died confused, tormented and depressed. His biographers point out that he drank continually to quell the voices of the evil spirits that continually tormented him. Satan promises freedom, but leads his followers into bondage and destruction. In Hungry for Heaven, Steve Turner, describes Crowley’s last days and death this way:

“Crowley finished his life as a sick, wasted heroin addict given to black rages and doubts about the value of his life’s work. His last words as he passed into a coma on December 1, 1947, were, “I am perplexed…”
–Steve Turner, Hungry for Heaven, pp. 92,97,98

Jim Morrison’s life before his death was characterized by wanton destruction. There is no evidence that he ever renounced his involvement in the occult and turned to the Lord Jesus Christ for forgiveness and eternal salvation. Whether it was beating and bludgeoning his “girlfriends,” stealing from even his “friends,” blaspheming God, repeated LSD inebriation, public nudity, endangering the lives of others while running several red lights on Sunset Boulevard at 100 miles per hour, Satan had his way with Jim Morrison. Sadly, as the electric Shaman, the demonic world used him like so many other rock stars to influence millions of young people toward destruction as well. Jane, in your email you state:

“My moment came about three years ago and I never felt such a sense of relief as I did then and still do. So much of what Jim Morrison wrote and spoke speaks volumes to me and helped me to break free from my chains.”

Genuine Freedom verses Counterfeit Freedom

Jane, I believe that you have substituted Jim Morrison with the place in your heart that only God should truly occupy. Jesus said that He is the one who has come to set the captives free (Luke 4:18-19 ). Jesus is the fulfillment of the message that God gave through the Old Testament prophets; that the Coming Savior would deliver those who are lost and enslaved to sin from death, the devil and eternal damnation. Jesus declared:

“Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free….”I tell you the truth, everyone who sins is a slave to sin. Now a slave has no permanent place in the family, but a son belongs to it forever. So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed…..You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desire. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies….if anyone keeps your word, he will never taste death.” –John 8:32, 34-36, 44, 52b

Jane, I was sorry to read about your experience when you stated:

“I resolved myself to the fact that I was never truly called and just figured I should have been because everyone around me seem to believe it with every fiber of their being. But after a while I just couldn’t pretend anymore.”

I thank God that we don’t need to pretend but can have a relationship with God through the shed blood of Christ that was poured out as payment for our sins. Jesus rose from the grave and conquered sin, death and the satanic forces that would hold us bound. The evidence all around us of the spiritual world and its affects on the masses is just one more confirmation to the veracity of Scripture; only the Bible reveals the darkness in the spiritual world for what it is, and the evil eschatological designs as to just where these spiritual rulers of darkness are leading the world. My hope and prayer is that you will realize that you are incredibly loved by God (John 3:16-17 ) and that perhaps God has allowed us to dialogue to reveal the truth to you. Jesus declared:

“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” –John 10:10

I believe the Lord wants you to know that if you turn to Him, He has open arms to receive you to Himself. Jesus, who cannot lie, promised, “whoever comes to me I will never cast out” (John 6:37b ). Jane, our sin has consequences. Sin is transgression of God’s moral law. All have sinned (Romans 3:23 ) and the wages of sin is death, but thanks be to God that the free gift of God is eternal life to those who turn to Him in repentant faith (Romans 6:23 ). Jane, you only need to come to Him in faith. The prodigal son returned to His father’s house expecting to be rejected as a son but hoping to perhaps be accepted as a servant. Much to his great surprise and eternal delight, he was treated as a son and forgiven and blessed beyond his wildest dreams:

“But when he came to himself, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired servants have more than enough bread, but I perish here with hunger! I will arise and go to my father, and I will say to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son. Treat me as one of your hired servants.”‘ And he arose and came to his father. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and felt compassion, and ran and embraced him and kissed him. And the son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’ But the father said to his servants, ‘Bring quickly the best robe, and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet. And bring the fattened calf and kill it, and let us eat and celebrate. For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found.’ And they began to celebrate.” –Luke 15:17-24

Jane, the Lord’s arms are open and he is ready to forgive you. The question is, will you turn from the broad road that leads to destruction and receive His eternal love and grace? I have already prayed for you a few times, and we are here to help you if you have sincere questions and desire our help. I hope this response clarifies our position. May the Lord draw you to Himself and I pray that you will respond:

“And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself” –John 12:32

In Christ’s love and truth,
Joe Schimmel

Jim conversando con el Pastor Fred L Stagmeyer

Third — though in many ways first — in the trifecta of '60s icons who died within a year of one another at the same tender age, Jim Morrison is the one whose death remains the most mysterious. This much we know (or think we know): The Doors' frontman died in a bathtub in his Paris apartment. He had been drinking whiskey. He had been shooting heroin. His girlfriend Pamela Courson was in the apartment with him. She found his body. No autopsy was performed. The conspiracy theories attending his death run a staggering range from "he was murdered" to "he never actually died." We'll never be sure. One thing was certain: When his death was reported to the world, on July 3, 1971, Morrison was 27 years old. (AP Photo)

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AP Photo 

Third — though in many ways first — in the trifecta of ’60s icons who died within a year of one another at the same tender age, Jim Morrison is the one whose death remains the most mysterious. This much we know (or think we know): The Doors’ frontman died in a bathtub in his Paris apartment. He had been drinking whiskey. He had been shooting heroin. His girlfriend Pamela Courson was in the apartment with him. She found his body. No autopsy was performed. The conspiracy theories attending his death run a staggering range from “he was murdered” to “he never actually died.” We’ll never be sure. One thing was certain: When his death was reported to the world, on July 3, 1971, Morrison was 27 years old.