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Keith Green was an American singer and songwriter of Christian music, originally from Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, New York. Beyond his music, Green is especially known for his devotion to the evangelization of the Christian faith and the call he made to others. Often considered controversial for his often confrontational lyrics, and his spoken messages, Green wrote several songs that were notable, some along with his wife, which included “Your Love Broke Through”, “Put You This Love in My Heart” “,” Asleep in the Light “and” Make My Life A Prayer To You “. In addition, he is also known for composing multiple modern Christian hymns, such as “O Lord, You’re Beautiful” and “There is a Redeemer.”
Keith had a Jewish heritage and was raised in Christian Science. He grew up reading the New Testament and called the mixture of being Jewish and learning about Jesus “a strange combination” that left him open-minded, but deeply dissatisfied in the spiritual sense. Later, he started taking drugs and became interested in Eastern mysticism and “free love”. After experiencing what Green described as a “bad trip,” he abandoned drug use and became interested in philosophy and theology. When Keith was 19 years old he met a girl named Melody. They became inseparable and married a year later. The couple had a continuous spiritual and musical search. Green later indicated, however, that in the midst of his skepticism, he had been “lost in a fantasy, until the love [of God] broke through.” . He renounced Christian Science and mysticism totally and became a follower of Jesus, a believer that Jesus is the Messiah. A week later, Melody Keith, his wife, whom he married in 1973 and was also Jewish, also became a believer in Jesus. It was during this time that the newlyweds began to get involved with the Ministry of the Vineyard Christian Community in Southern California.
In 1975, the Greens, as new believers, began taking people who needed help to their small home in the suburbs of Los Angeles, California, in the San Fernando Valley. Both Keith and Melody were composers who were part of the staff of CBS Records, in Hollywood, and used their income to support those who asked them for help. From the beginning, his close friend, Randy Stonehill, who was fighting at that time, stayed with them for a while. The house would later be known as “El Invernadero”, a place where several people grew up. The Green continued to invite guests into their house. Over time they ran out of space, and bought the house next to their own and rented one from the same neighborhood, additionally, for five years. Keith and Melody provided an environment where they shared the Christian faith by teaching a group of young adults, most of whom were of college age. Much to the dismay of the neighbors, there were 75 people living in Green’s homes and painfully down the suburban streets – including recovering drug addicts and prostitutes, cyclists, homeless people, and many single pregnant girls who needed shelter and safety. Some were referred to the Green by other ministries and aid centers, but a large majority only crossed the home on their way past the road. In 1977, the Greens officially converted their ministry into a nonprofit NGO, which they called Last Days Ministries.
A good deal of Keith Green’s ministry was greatly influenced by Minister Leonard Ravenhill, who introduced Keith to Charles Finney, a nineteenth-century evangelist preacher who preached the holiness of God to provoke the conviction of sin in his listeners During his concerts, Green, he used to exhort his listeners to repent and commit themselves completely to following Jesus Christ. Green later softened his focus, and this transition is evident in his music with the beginning. So he wants to go back to Egypt in 1980. He described the changes he went through in his next-to-last article for the last days magazine.
In 1978, the Last Days Ministries (LDM) began publishing a newsletter, which was originally printed on a few pages of loose paper. The format of the bulletin was developed in content until eventually becoming a “small, colorful magazine”, and changed its name in mid-1985 as the Last Days Magazine. The magazine included articles by Green and his wife Melody, as well as messages from contemporary Christian authors such as David Wilkerson, Leonard Ravenhill, and Pratney Winkie, all of whom lived in the area where it was made. The publication also came later to include reprinted works by classic Christian authors such as Charles Finney, John Wesley and William Booth and his wife Catherine. Most of the articles were reprinted as tracts. By the mid-1980s, the magazine had been being sent to more than 500,000 people around the world.
Along with eleven other passengers, Keith Green died on July 28, 1982, when the Cessna 414 (leased by the Last Days Ministries) crashed after taking off from the private airstrip located on the LDM property. The aircraft’s twin-engine plane carried eleven passengers and the pilot, Don Burmeister, on an aerial tour of the property and the surrounding area, Green and two of his sons, Josiah (three years old), and Bethania (two years old). ), were on board the plane, along with visiting missionaries John and Dede Smalley and their six children.
The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) determined that the accident was caused by the pilot-in-command (PIC), which allowed the aircraft to overload beyond its limits of use.
Two full albums with original songs by Green, were produced posthumously, after his death: The Prodigal Son (1983) and Jesus Commands Us to Go! (1984). Another release, I just want to see you there (1983) which is mostly previously published material. Another compilation of his recordings, I Only Want to See You There (1983), was released in a two-volume game in 1987 and 1988, and included five unpublished songs.
In 2008, Last Days Ministries and Sparrow Records partnered and produced The Live Experience – Special Edition, a combination of CD / DVD with 16 live recordings and 4 hours of DVD video including a video of live performances, as well as details about Green’s life and his death. A “Greatest Hits” album was also released at the same time, including 17 of Green’s most popular songs and an unpublished Christian song: “Your Love Came Over Me”.
In 1992, several artists came together to re-record many of Green’s best known tracks for a tribute album titled “No Compromise: Remembering the Music of Keith Green” under the label of Sparrow Records. Various Christian musicians participated in recording; some of which include Rich Mullins, Steven Curtis Chapman, Charlie Peacock, Petra, Susan Ashton, Margaret Becker, Michael Card, GLAD, Green Steve, and Russ Taff.
In 2001, BEC Records released a second tribute album: Start Right Here: Remembering the Life of Keith Green, produced by Derri Daugherty, the album included recordings of modern artists such as MxPx, Electric Joy, Starflyer 59, among others. < / p>
On the twentieth anniversary of Keith’s death, Sparrow Records released a new album in homage to Green: “Your Love Broke Through: The Worship Songs of Keith Green.” The 2002 album contains re-recordings of Rebecca St. James, Michelle Tumes, Chris Tomlin, Paris Twila, Darlene Zschech, Jason Upton, Martin Smith, Charlie Hall, Joanne Hogg, Matt Redman, Oakley Paul and Sarah Sadler. It also included a version of There Is One, a song that Green did not finish completely, whose version was performed by Michael W. Smith who composed it together with the British composer and Christian music artist Martin Smith.
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