FRED MCNAUGHTON – For many WJTL listeners from the mid to late 80s, DeGarmo and Key was their favorite band. They remained Rock and Roll while adopting “cool” 80s keyboard sounds and production techniques. They also continued to share the Gospel in their same straight-forward manner, even though other artists of the time were finding success with ambiguous lyrics and a less confrontational message.
I had the opportunity to produce/promote/be a part of….about a dozen DeGarmo and Key shows over the years in the WJTL listening area (Hersheypark Arena, Elizabethtown College, Hershey Theatre, LMH, Sight and Sound, Creation). With Dana’s unexpected passing, I was trying to remember some of the highlights from those events. Of the two of them, Eddie DeGarmo was the more affable. He was much more likely to strike up a conversation with you and hang out with the local crew. Dana seemed more serious and focused on the task at hand. I do remember that Dana had the kind of gaze that could turn you into a statue. Intense would not begin to describe it.
Here are just three little nuggets of memories I had from working with Eddie and Dana over the years.
For some reason I ended up backstage just before D&K was to perform at the Creation Festival. As I remember it, this would have been toward the end of their career. They were playing an afternoon slot. I overheard stage manager Denny Keitzman tell them that, for whatever reason, they wouldn’t be able to soundcheck. Eddie, Dana and Tommy Cathey (the band’s bass player) were unfazed by the request and nonchalantly said they could go on without a soundcheck. This was not said with any sort of bragging, just very matter of factly. Then they went on stage and lit into one of the hottest sets I have ever heard at Creation, barring none. They were consummate professionals. They had done thousands of shows and showed complete confidence in their own abilities as well as that of the Creation team they were working with.
Once, when we were doing a DeGarmo and Key show at LMH (Lancaster Mennonite High School). Dana was on some kind of special diet where he needed to eat fish every so many days. Our intrepid concert catering team (Gwenda, Sarah, Cyndee, et.al.) agreed – against their better judgement. By the time school opened back up on Monday morning the fish smell had permeated the entire music wing of the school. I am pretty sure we have not served fish at a concert since.
Lastly, I remember a show we did with Eddie and Dana at Sight and Sound Auditorium. This was the old sight and sound hall before the new one was built. If my memory serves me correctly it was a co-bill between DeGarmo and Key and Mylon and Brokenheart. It was the last day of the tour and the crew was pulling off all kinds of practical jokes. During one song, they lowered a poster of some kind with writing all over it, from the rafters, right beside Dana while he was singing. Even the stoic Dana Key got a laugh from their unexpected prank and laughingly shared with the audience that it was the last night of the tour and that everyone was just a little giddy with the thought of going home. I think it helped all of us realize that these guys weren’t just musicians – they were dads and husbands with wives and children who were excited for their soon arrival.
Dana Key (along with his childhood friend and partner – Ed DeGarmo) was a pioneer of Christian Rock Music. He died yesterday (June 6) reportedly of a ruptured blood clot, at the age of 56. At the time of his death, Dana was pastor of a church in Cordova Tennessee – The Love of Christ Church. His passing gives new perspective regarding his comments from that Sight and Sound concert from long ago about “being a little giddy with the thought of going home.”
Station Manager & Get Up and Go Show Co-Host
FRED MCNAUGHTON – According to posts to his facebook, Dana Key, founding member of Pioneering Christian Rock Band – DeGarmo & Key – passed away yesterday (June 6)
Dana founded D&K along with keyboardist Eddie DeGarmo. Eddie and Dana became best friends in first grade. DeGarmo & Key were one of the most popular and influential groups of Christian Music’s early days.
Dana was a direct descendant of the famous, Francis Scott Key, author of the Star Spangled Banner.
At the time of his death, Dana was pastor of a church in Cordova Tennessee – The Love of Christ Church.
We will keep you up to date with more information as it becomes available.
DeGarmo & Key were scheduled to perform at a benefit concert on June 13th. The Driven By Love Flood relief concert was to be hosted by The Love of Christ Church in Cordova and was to be a fundraiser for the flood victims in West TN. Bobby Qualls and his daughter were two of those victims. Bobby lost his life while trying to save his daughter.
Here is a link to his facebook page
Here, too is a video from their 1986 Dove Award Show performance.
FRED MCNAUGHTON – Sadly, we do not have many Chic-fil-As in our area. The song, however, is hysterical!
FRED MCNAUGHTON – When I was little I loved the smell of coffee brewing in the morning. My mom and dad would be getting ready for work and I could smell it wafting from the kitchen from my room. Then one day my mom left me taste it. IT TASTED LIKE PICKLE JUICE!!!!! Yuck. Thus was born the song, “If Coffee Smells So Good Why Does It Taste So Bad.” Not only is it one of my most requested songs, I think it might be up there with one of the longest song titles of all time.
When I sing “The Coffee Song” in concert, kids inevitably ask me if I really don’t like the taste of coffee. I tell them that when I was their age I didn’t like it, but that as I’ve gotten older, and have fried more of my taste buds, that I actually do enjoy drinking coffee in the morning.
Yesterday I received this email from listener – Pastor Melvin Flosser. It made me laugh so much that I thought I would share it with you.
Well, I was heading to church this morning with my wife and five kids sipping a cup of coffee (Sumatra beans fresh ground and made in a french press) and, well, let’s just say I was inspired. A little silliness, a little caffeine and well, the rest just kinda flowed. Hope you enjoy.
I’ve got this nagging question,
I pose it to you Phredd.
I really want to help you!
It really must be said!
You had a bad experience,
Like most the people had
If you drink pathetic coffee, then of course it’s bad!
Use bottled water, and grind your own beans!
If you do it right you will LOVE COFFEE!
I’ve got this nagging question
And also to your spouse
Did you just try Folgers
Or buy some Maxwell House?
Do you think Dunkin Donuts is gourmet? Oh how sad!
No wonder you think coffee is so awfully bad!
Don’t go to Turkey Hill, to buy coffee!
If you know what to buy you will LOVE coffee!
Coffee is so good!
If you make it like you should!
It doesn’t have to be
Bitter or acidy
Oh, it’s liquid love
A gift from up above
You will yell out loud for sure
Asking me for MORE!!
I’ve got a nagging question
I pose it to you Phredd
Don’t let people who can’t make coffee
Make you think it is all so bad!
If you just let me make you some then you will be so glad
You will know that coffee smells so good and does NOT taste bad!
— Pastor M. Flosser.
Thanks Pastor Mel. That made my day. I think I will ask Eddie to fire up the WJTL Coffee Making Machine because now you got me hankering for a cup of joe. Pour yourself your favorite hot beverage and enjoy the video.
FRED MCNAUGHTON – Josh Wilson is in concert tonite (5/7) at Church of the Open Door in York. He is an amazing guitarist and loop crazy hymn re-interpretationist!
FRED MCNAUGHTON – You have probably heard of the recent flooding in Tennessee, Kentucky and Mississippi. Heavy rains sparked flash flooding that had a devastating affect upon tens of thousands of people. That number includes christian music veterans Farrell and Farrell, whose home was under five feet of water.
Bob Farrell told WJTL’s Terry Phillips – host of the Archives on WJTL, “We were hit hard–lost almost everything.”
Please be in prayer for Bob and Jayne Farrell, or to offer tangable assistance visit ccmclassics.com.
You can also donate directly via paypal.
Fred McNaughton – So I was tooling around the new WJTL website, seeing how everything looks and making sure all the links are working and enjoying how the videos pop up at the WJTL video page when I saw this video and remembered how funny I thought it was. So I watched it again, and somehow I think it is even funner. Thank you Kristi, Eddie and Shawn MacDonald for being so genuinely entertaining. You have taken something as misunderstood as stalking and made it a work of art. Can you say “Reality TV Show” Pilot? Listen closely for the line, “If I was in charge of myself, I’d be on vacation.”
Many of our friends in Nashville have been impacted by the flooding this past week. Here’s one small way you can help.
Anthony Evans will be leading worship at this year’s National Day of Prayer event on Thursday, May 6.
We talked with Anthony this morning. He told an amazing story of how God used his song “Could It Be”. You can read the story for yourself at Anthony’s website.
You can also listen to our interview with Anthony at our WJTLCasts page.