Featured song: I’m Hooked On A Good Thing, by Gary S. Paxton, from the 1977 album More.

Update September 2016: Gary passed away in July of this year, and his live website is off line now. The link below points to the Wayback machine archive of it

One of the earliest Jesus music writers and singers I came across was Gary S. Paxton. He is on the first tape I recorded off the radio from The Scott Ross Show back in 1976. He was not mellow like the 2nd Chapter Of Acts, and he was not folksy like Malcom & Alwyn; he was Gary S. Paxton, the guy who created Monster Mash and Alley Oop back in the early 1960s. And when Jesus got ahold of this wild man, his music didn’t suddenly become something you’d hear the choir singing on Sunday morning. It was gutsy and growly; in fact, he himself labeled it as “Christian Grit”.

I didn’t have the privilege of owning one of his albums until just recently. His web site is, sadly, difficult to navigate, and finding the place where his albums can be ordered is like finding the Loch Ness monster; sometimes you see it, sometimes you don’t. Right now, it’s one of those “don’t” times, and I can’t share the information about exactly where I found them on his site. (The albums are also available on iTunes and Amazon). In any case, when I ordered his first two recordings, The Astonishing, Outrageous, Amazing, Incredible, Unbelievable, Different World Of Gary S. Paxton and More, not only did I get CD quality recordings of this unique music, but those CDs included additional tracks that did not appear on the original vinyl LPs, and Paxton himself, age 71, signed them and included a sheaf of notes about his life.

Several of the songs are favorites of mine, and I will share a couple of them on this blog. One that caught my ear was a song I did not know as well as some others. What I noticed was a brass riff in the song. It seemed familiar because it was almost identical to a brass riff on one of the jingles for The Larry Black Show, which I listened to for many years. Paxton created the jingles Larry used once he took over the show from Scott Ross, and the strong similarity suggests that both the jingles and this track were recorded at about the same time, using the same studio musicians and singers. Listen to these two jingles from the show:

And then listen to this Paxton song from the 1977 album More. In particular, notice how the song sounds at about 1:25 into it, compared to the jingles just above:

Oh, well I’m hooked on a good thing
Oh, well I’m hooked on a good thing
Oh, well I’m hooked on a good thing
Oh, well I’m hooked on a good thing

I thought I had life and things all goin’ my way
I thought I had freedom, rights to think, hear and say
Self-ruled my kingdom, I had me on the throne
Love seemed all around but still I felt all alone

Things I thought could keep me high were tearin’ me apart
Step by step on my way down ’till something changed my heart

And now I’m hooked on a good thing
Oh, yes I’m hooked on a good thing
Oh, well I’m hooked on a good thing

Now what I’m plugged into isn’t fake or insane
It even has strength when I just mention His name
He has replaced me as the king on the throne
With Him in your life you’ll have a new life of your own

Now the high I’m gettin’ on is buildin’ my life up
I’m walking in a constant high since I drank from the loving cup

Because I’m hooked on a good thing
Oh, well I’m hooked on a good, good, good, good thing
Oh, well I’m hooked on a good thing
Oh, well I’m hooked on a good thing

More, 1977, Gary S. Paxton

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