Larry Norman Concert in New York City (1)

Larry in Ohio, October, 2001

Larry Norman in concert; Saturday, 8/4/2007
Calvary Baptist Church; New York City

Larry Norman is one of my favorite singer/songwriters. I first heard his music through my older sister, Sharon, back when I was a teen. If you are not familiar with Larry or his music you can read more about him at his official bio or at his Wikipedia entry. I will post some personal notes here, and then post a write-up of the concert tomorrow.

I saw Larry in concert several times in the 1970’s and 1980’s, but the last time I saw him live was in 1990. So when I heard he was coming to New York City, I was very excited. I live in Agawam, MA which is about three hours away, but certainly close enough for a Larry concert!

We have three boys (ages 15, 13 and 10), so my wife and I decided to take the whole family to the concert. We had never been to New York City, so we went in the morning and spent the whole day just hiking around Manhattan together. (You can read about our trip and view the pictures here.)

Larry Norman - Restless in Manhattan We listened to Larry’s Restless in Manhattan CD in the car on the way. This is a CD of a live concert Larry gave in Manhattan 35 years ago back in 1972. We wondered if the 1972 concert had also been at Calvary Baptist Church, the same place where we were going that night, but we couldn’t find a location printed anywhere in the CD liner notes.

At the end of the day, we went to eat at a restaurant next to the church where Larry would be playing that night. The restaurant host seated us next to a long table with about ten people sitting at it. We ordered our food and were chatting for a bit when we suddenly noticed Larry was part of the group at the long table. We did our best not to sit and stare, and overcame any urges to walk up and introduce ourselves and interrupt his meal.

We were still eating when Larry and another gentleman got up from the table to leave. I guess they had noticed us doing our best not to sit and stare, because they stopped at our table to say “Hi!” on the way out. The other man was Denny Fridkin from Larry’s old band People!, and they were heading over to the church to do a quick sound check before the concert.

When we got to the church, there were only a few people ahead of us in line. It was a beautiful evening, and we had fun just hanging out on the sidewalk with the other people waiting for the doors to open. This was a new experience for my boys who had never been to a concert before.

Tim and Sam waiting outside Calvary Baptist Church for the Larry Norman concert

Then a video crew came up and announced that they would be filming the concert for a DVD. They asked if anyone standing in line would like to say a few words about Larry for the camera to possibly be included in the DVD. I participated along with a number of others.

They opened the doors around 7:10 p.m., and we went in and got excellent seats near the front. There was a piano set up on the side, as well as some congas, a couple stools, and three guitars. We sat in front of a couple from Finland with whom I talked briefly during intermission. They had come all the way from Finland to see the concert!

The man in charge of the video production came forward and had us run through some video shots of the audience clapping, cheering, standing, etc. This was so they could get some audience shots with the lights on, because during the concert the house lights would be down.

Then the host for the evening, Wayne Williams from Star 99.1 FM, came up to introduce the concert. Wayne confirmed that this was indeed the site of the concert from 35 years ago. He then welcomed Larry to the stage.

Click here for Part 2 (Concert Write-Up with Pictures)

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  1. wayne williams says:


    I enjoyed reading your thoughts from August, as well as your post on Larry’s web site. Yes, indeed our families were blessed at having the privilege of seeing, hearing, and meeting Larry, and I know that these memories will carry into eternity!

    Please stay in touch, and maybe we’ll meet again sometime!


  2. Ray Fowler says:

    Wayne – Great to hear from you! Thank you once again for hosting this great concert. And thank you for encouraging this pastor and his family to make the trek out to New York City for the day. It is a day we will always cherish in our memories.

  3. moonbros says:

    We were the filmmakers at that Larry Norman concert almost a year ago in New York. Just wanted to let you know that indeed the concert has been edited into a DVD. You can check out a short trailer that we’ve put together at our blog:

  4. Ray Fowler says:

    moonbros – Thanks for the info. The trailer looks great, and we look forward to the DVD release. It will be a wonderful way to remember this very special concert.

Trackbacks / Pingbacks

  1. Family Trip to New York at Ray Fowler .org
  2. Preaching Tired at Ray Fowler .org
  3. Larry Norman Concert in New York City (2) at Ray Fowler .org
  4. Larry Norman Passes Away (1947-2008) at Ray Fowler .org
  5. My Tribute Song to Larry Norman at Ray Fowler .org
  6. Larry Norman Sings Goodbye Farewell at Ray Fowler .org
  7. Some Larry Norman Videos at Ray Fowler .org
  8. Larry Norman on NPR at Ray Fowler .org
  9. Larry Norman’s Funeral/Memorial Service at Ray Fowler .org
  10. Larry Norman Funeral Video at Ray Fowler .org

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