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Story of Rhythm and Grace, A: What the Church Can Learn from Rock and Roll about Healing the Racial Divide Paperback – Bargain Price, February 1, 2009


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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Some religious people are skeptical about rock music due to its association with what they view as morally unacceptable behavior. It is refreshing that Calhoun, an evangelical Christian minister and former professional musician, can see beyond these dated stereotypes and unapologetically highlight the good that rock has to offer. As an African-American growing up in the 1950s and 60s, Calhoun knows firsthand about the effects of racism. His personal anecdotes about this period are eye-opening, heart-wrenching and exciting. The author enjoyed unique opportunities, hanging out and playing bass with such famous musicians as Dr. John, the Allman Brothers and Mick Jagger. His historical and sociological insights about racism and the civil rights movement are fascinating and make this project worthwhile. Unfortunately, Calhoun doesnt succeed in building a bridge between rock and racial harmony. His argument is overly simplistic, never achieving the sophistication found in his personal stories and historical analysis. Still, those looking for an unusual perspective on one of the most turbulent times in recent U.S. history will be intrigued. (Feb.)
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From the Back Cover

From Saturday Night Rockin' to Sunday Morning Reconciliation

Before becoming a pastor, Jimi Calhoun performed alongside many world-famous musicians, including:

Jimi Hendrix
Etta James
Hank Williams Jr.
John Lennon
Elton John
Mick Jagger
The Four Tops
Martha and the Vandellas
Rare Earth

In A Story of Rhythm and Grace, Calhoun weaves together engrossing stories about racial differences and reconciliation from his life in the music world and his life in the church. Reflecting on how he has often found more racial harmony on the stage and in the recording studio than in the pews, Jimi shows what religion might learn from rock and roll.

"As an African-American growing up in the 1950s and '60s, Calhoun knows firsthand about the effects of racism. His personal anecdotes about this period are eye-opening, heart-wrenching and exciting. . . . His historical and sociological insights about racism and the civil rights movement are fascinating. . . . Those looking for an unusual perspective on one of the most turbulent times in recent U.S. history will be intrigued."--Publishers Weekly

"I love Jimi's heart. He's written the right book at the right time. This book is a great read!"--Dr. John, musician

"Musician and pastor Jimi Calhoun has accomplished that all too rare achievement--he wrote an absolutely unique book that fills a true need. Artists, especially musicians, have always led when it comes to bringing racially divided people together. May God use this book to open our arms and hearts to the rhythm and grace of the whole of humanity."--Charlie Peacock, recording artist, producer, and author of A New Way to Be Human

"Jimi Calhoun is a rare combination of storyteller, sage, artist, and pastor. Reading this warm-hearted, encouraging, and challenging book is like sitting down with Jimi for a dozen leisurely lunches and talking about what it means to be human beings with different skin tones and different histories. I hope and pray that this book will infuse hundreds of thousands of pastors, small group leaders, neighbors, and coworkers with new rhythm and grace."--Brian McLaren, author of A New Kind of Christian

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Brazos Press (February 1, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 158743220X
  • ASIN: B0046LUV2Q
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 4.4 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,789,461 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Jimi Calhoun has written a very thought provoking and entertaining piece of work, melding rock and roll, religion and race relations.

As I read his accounts of race problems, I would think to myself, "no way this is still happening -- this is all in the past -- we elected Obama, it's all fixed now." Then I would turn on the t.v. and see the latest news reports:

Highland Mall, Austin, Texas, shuts down early during Texas Relays because of what management called "security concerns." (note: Texas Relays draws mostly African-American contestants and spectators).

OR, Ryan Moats, NFL player, held at gunpoint and harassed by Dallas policeman outside a Dallas hospital as he tried to make it to the bedside of his dying mother-in-law...

OR, Texas State Rep. Betty Brown (R)saying that Asian-Americans should change their names because they're too hard to pronounce: "Rather than everyone here having to learn Chinese -- I understand it's a rather difficult language -- do you think that it would behoove you and your citizens to adopt a name that we could deal with more readily here?" Brown said.

I had no idea all of this was still going on (and this is just one week of news in one State!).

Mr. Calhoun's book offers great insights as he encourages us to learn from our past, not live in it and to hold on to the progress we have already made. We must forgive and go forward.

This is a delightful book that I hope will not only entertain, but will make everyone aware that there is still a whole lot of work that needs to be done.
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"The Story of Rhythm and Grace" is a well written book that discusses racial differences by interweaving great historical and cultural truths. Most importantly, Jimi discusses openly, the "nasty little secret" that has been kept for centurys in the modern church and the Bible Belt where the Civil War still rages in the hearts of many...even in the church. Remembering that without truth, we cannot heal the differences, Mr. Calhoun open discusses secret prejudices that still reside against anyone of a different color.

We, the church, have been guilty of lieing to ourselves about prejudice because it seems like such a nasty and unacceptable word... After all, how can we say we really love Jesus if our love is limited by color? Good question - one we must all answer with the same candor and grace that Mr. Calhoun does.

A great read... if you're willing to confront the truth. Thanks Jimi!

Rita Duggins-Brohman,
California
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I read this book and thought it was wonderful! I can understand how the world of music would make skin color inconsequential because it is a creative world and creativity doesn't observe boundaries. The church has some man made elements as an institution that sometimes hinders the heart of it. Most of the time I have been oblivious to race situations and it is probably because I never really had to think about it since being white it didn't affect me directly. No human being should feel like he or she is worth more than another human being. It is such a dangerous thing. It brings out the worst in us. I'm not a literary critic, but I thought this book was very well written and had interesting anecdotes to illustrate the main points. It held my interest throughout. I want to read it again!
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