Always ethereal, always eclectic, I write as the mood strikes, when there intrigue reveals itself. Usually that means something controversial or adventure of some sort.

I've tried really hard to be unprovocative, but have as yet been unsuccessful.

Friday, 18 January 2008

Where Are They Now: Arts & Crafts Edition

I started the first internet memorial to Servant and the HMS commune the band was part of in the late 90s, over on Geocities. But over the years, Geocities has become less user-friendly, and the code on that page has degraded. So I'm closing that page, and moving the information to a few pages over here. Comments from the Geocities site will be artificially added here.

You may not have had a chance to read my first live blog posts, back in 1971, '72, '73, and '83, as I discussed my thoughts of living in the commune at the time, a form of fictive kinship society.

Since then, a few updates. The commune's most enduring concrete legacy seems to have been in the arts, in myriad forms, so that's the focus of this post. Some of the music of Sheep and Servant can be found here- just click on the drop-down box on the right to find the right band from yesteryear. Bob Hardy, one of Servant's lead singers, produced a solo cassette, Face the Distance, which was mellow and deep, due in large part to lyrics written by Servant's guitarist Bruce Wright, now promoted to glory. My dad, Jim Palosaari, later managed and promoted Whitecross with Rex Carroll, One Bad Pig, and Deliverance. More recently he did the narration for a PBS production of The Lonnie Frisbee Story.

Jacobstone was an alternative Christian rock band managed by Matt Spransy of Servant and Sheep fame, and including Daniel Spransy, a child within the commune. Max, another of Matt's sons has recently come out with his own music as well. And Mike Damrow has resurrected Sheep with Mole and Mary Barker in the Milwaukee area.

Matt's Queen Elizabeth in Oven Mitts, by Linnea Spransydaughter, Linnea, has done splendid artwork over the years, and now works with a group that prays through the visual arts. Matt's brother, Tim, is a successful commercial artist. Servant's guitarist, Owen Brock, went on to influence the development of Over the Rhine and does the artwork for them. Over the Rhine interestingly has a direct connection to Servant, as in later years the name of the band was retained though most of it's members changed. The final amalgamation of members included three who would eventually become Over the Rhine.

As for me, my most significant contributions to an artistic legacy were directing high school productions at a school in North Africa, of The Breakfast Club, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, and most recently, Oliver. But those have been successful largely due to an excellent cadre of actors, incredible music direction by Elissa, and innovative set design by Joe.

These days, the definitive look at Servant can be found at a new website, launched a year ago, and I would encourage you to browse there.

46 comments:

Chris Gallagher said...

My parents were involved in the Jesus Movement on the East Coast, incl. Ohio, Rhode Island and Massachusetts, circa 1969 / 1970-71. I first saw your name on the Amazon reviews of George MacDonald books; MacDonald is my favorite author. This site is fascinating.

-1/26/03

Dan Traylor said...

Couldnt believe I found this site as some of my brothers & sisters from Germany am looking for? Already found one I think.

-01-27-03

Rebecca Spence said...

I miss you. I called finally today but they said that that was not your number. Then it occurred to technically illiterate I that you would be reachable through my minimal Google knowledge and yea!! it is true.

11/18/02

Ben Haas said...

hiya everyone.... :) now living in south korea!!!! remember me????? lol;)

3/11/03

bob minard said...

i remember when your dad and bill lowry brought a crusade to davenport, iowa in 1972. i went to the meetings they had in the tent which was along the levee. i remember the sheep. they were the first christian rock band i ever heard. they made a big impression.

4/8/03

stan said...

i remember your dad and mom and the grants pass location and the spin off of the JPUSA in chicago -- keep up the good work -- stan - a christian lawyer looking for more christian community.

6/16/03

Steve Pietila said...

Your site is coming along nicely. Great pics and info. Hope you have time to keep updating.

7/5/03

Karen Savoy said...

i am looking for urgen kobs and philipe lefon...mostly but anyone that lived in the house ...56 beaulah hill...upper norwood...london SE 19....back in the days of sheep and lonesome stone...anyone else that lived in the house back then please contact me..

30 August 03
laren_savoy2000@yahoo.com

Glenn (Whale) Walters said...

Amazed to find Jedidiah hosting web page. Knew you when still in womb and newborn. Was Jesus People of Milwaukee before and after Prospect.

-10/26/03

Susan Palosaari Cowper (mom) said...

Reading your web is like scrolling through my life--there I am with little you safely tucked inside, scroll, scroll, here I am at the end portion of the story and you out in the wide world yonder. May all the adventures in Christ keep coming to meet you.

-Oct 15th--happy birthday!

Jim Palosaari said...

Jedidiah, what a blessing you are.Anytime I read about the events of the Jesus People and their roots, I am filled with awe!

8/6/03

Norman said...

Well done article. Sure nice to know a bit more of your background.

-03/11/06

Casey Townsend said...

What a nice surprise to find your page. I was the Laserist for Servant during the Great American Album Give-a-way Tour (The Caught in the Act of Loving Him album). It was one of the best experiences of my life. Id love to hear from you or any of the former members.

-11 FEB 2004
townsend (AT) northlink (DOT) com

Nar Martinez said...

Im an old friend of your folks ... going back to the Servant era. Would like to hear from you!

3/30/04

Phil Hardy said...

I eventually bought 4 of Servants albums. I saw them in 1981. They were awesome, and raised the bar for Christian rockers.

-5/14/04

randy johnson said...

I am blown away with all this great collection of your work. Very, very interesting, and its great to hear the history and whats going on with everybody now. Thanks!

7/7/04

June Dalton said...

Jay and I lived in Milwaukee at the time your parents were there. We worked with the Jesus People movement before they left for Europe.

10/7/04

stan wayne said...

I used to visit at Highway Ministries in Oregon -- interested in communally likeminded folks you know of in New York.

-11/11/04

Lynn Malmberg said...

Hey Jed, I was probably your first best friend in the ministry but I forgive you if you dont remember!! I would LOVE to hear from you. This website is really a blessing!! Love, Lynn

Glenn Kaiser said...

Great Site, thanks and also for the invite to join the Web Ring. Perhaps we can in the future... Im on the road and will have to take care of that later on!! Much touring and needed family time as well as pastoral responsibilities keep us busy as you surely understand.

Steven Ashlock said...

Hello, Thanks for all the great info on your page. In the late 70s, Servant, your mom & dad (maybe you and your brother) would stay at my parents house in Marin County (near San Francisco). I remember all the band members very well - especially Bruce who...

1/29/05

Sheena Littlehale said...

Your page looks good. Lots of interesting info. :-)

11/27/02

Helen Weidner said...

What fun to bump into your page! I was with Jesus People in Milwaukee shortly after the commune on Prospect street started, and also visited the pre-opening rehearsals of Lonesome Stone in London. Ah, we were all so young! Great memories, lifetime friends.

2/10/04

Henry Huang said...

So many bitter sweet memories over so many years. Milwaukee and Europe were the sweetest. We lived a life time in those few years.

2/13/05

danny perry said...

Nice web site. My Sue and I were big Servant fans. We had visited the HMS a few times in the very early eighties. Great to learn of what some of the folks are up these days. Always a joy to know when people are still serving the Lord.

4/6/05

Jacky Hughes said...

Wow - dont know what made me look those names up, but this was so interesting to find. I lived for a short time in the Norwood House in London - and remember that time like it was yesterday. I remember hitch hiking to Edinburgh to watch Lonesome Stone.

17/9/05

David Palosaari said...

Just wanted to say Hi Jed and hope things are going well for you. I ran into your dad a couple of years ago. He was visiting and came up to my mothers house in Verona,Wi. My wife and I are experiencing a rebirth if you will with regard to our relationship with Christ.

3/16/07

Eric Unright said...

Thanks for your years of ministry. The band Servant was a HUGE part of my teenage/young adult years. Hearing their music brings nothing but fond memories and and a desire for the simple faith in Christ. May God bless you all! Eric

3/31/07

Diana Fogderud said...

Was part of Christ is the Answer, with Bill Lowery, but a collaborative agreement with Jim Polaasari and Bill Lowery for further discipleship training experiences. I met Jim Polaasari, about 2 years ago at the 2004 Christ is the Answer reunion in Nashville.

4/4/07

Alan Gibson said...

Jim Palosaari and Susan Palosaari Cowper - Lonesome Stone & Sheep Dear Jim and Susan You are probably not aware that Larry...

4/5/07

Rev Steve Jones said...

What happened to Linda Meissner? Is she still alive?

8/5/07

Paul Jones said...

A great trip down memory lane. Please dive my regards to your mum and dad (if they remember me: I interviewed the Sheep for Everyman magazine, for example). Great to hear youre still going strong, Sue & Jim!

11 August 07

Louis St Cyr said...

I was a good friend of Jim during the movement. Helped him form a couple of Bands in the Northwest. Im a former Black Panther and accompanied Jim and a group to Sweden. I would like to contact him.

8/14/07

Richard Hale said...

Still alive and doing well, although never received de-programming.Currently living on a small farm in S.E. Indiana. Im married to Jenny we have four teenage daughters, still loving and serving the Lord. I planted lots of trees and ran the lasers lights w/Servant.

9/3/07

Randy Barnetson said...

Would like to hear from people who went to the Upper Room in Victoria or the Shepherds Call in Vancouver back in the early 70s. Thats when I came to Christ. Im now a Pastor in L.A.

-Sept 28, 2007
info@randybarnetson.com

Rose Hoene said...

Greetings! I was attempting to find info on hippies, duluth, mn and ran across your website somehow....interesting in itself! I was a member of the Lonesome Stone cast...took Carolines place through an audition here in Duluth after she fell off the front stage.

10/7/7

Dave Unander said...

Jim P. and Ron Rendleman laid hands and prayed for me for the power of the Holy Spirit, as a HS kid in Chicago, in 1971, after the rally to support Sammy Tippitts illegal arrest for evangelism. God used that day to affect my whole life. Im now chair of Bi...

9 Nov 2007

cody palosaari said...

Nice content on your website, very informative ( :

George Dunn said...

Looking for 3 guys I planted trees with in Oregon named Steve, Stacy and Herb. Please let me know if any info. Thank You. They were with the HMS in approx. 1984.

2/16/03

C. Marie Byars said...

Hi. I got ahold of your name through "jed.com". I have a son named "Jedidiah" who's called "Jed", but I don't put much of his info on the web. Anyway, his name was also chosen primarily for the meaning (I held onto that name between discovering it at age 9 and naming my son 30 years later!). It was secondarily confirmed by Jedediah Smith's story. But I first heard the name from a 70's TV show: Barnaby Jones, whose nephew was Jedidiah (and play by a pretty cute actor). Funny because Barnaby was played by Buddy Ebsen of "Jed Clampett" fame. So, was it an inside joke? Keep on being proud of being a Jedidiah---it's a wonderful thing to carry that name around, even though Solomon didn't get to use it much!

Anonymous said...

Your blog keeps getting better and better! Your older articles are not as good as newer ones you have a lot more creativity and originality now keep it up!

'abdul muHib said...

Thank you. But actually the post dates do not necessarily correspond to when items were written.

Anonymous said...

I noticed that the question regarding Linda Meissner, a couple years ago, was never answered. Does anyone know if she is still alive and if so where she is? I knew her in Seattle in 1969 and occasionally wonder what happened to her.

'abdul muHib said...

Anon: Try her on Facebook; she's there.

Anonymous said...

Thanks I looked at Facebook but did not see the right person listed among the choices when I tried. Do you happen to have a link to her page?

'abdul muHib said...

Sorry. I don't know who you are, and I can't provide a private link over a public forum. I suggest you let me know your name, and I can tell Linda to look you up on Facebook.