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Sonlyght Special

An Interview With Terry "Daniel Amos" Taylor

by Rudy Grande

Sonlyght June 1982

Rudy: How is the county responding to your latest album, ALARMA!?
Terry: I think it depends on what part of the country you're talking about. I think in the south they're more inclined to be listening to country-type music. We're getting a real good response out in the eastern part of the United States. The people seem to be a little more open. What's amazing, though, is that out of all the albums we've released, the greatest amount of mail has come from ALARMA! It has been very, very positive.

Rudy: We have been really concerned. K-LYT is a fairly contemporary-oriented rock radio station. Our audience seems to be very mature and they accept a lot of the things we do. We put your album on the turntable...and BOY! We got two positive letters, and the rest were: "Hey, do they know what they're doing? You ought to talk to them and find out!" We want to clear up a couple of things today. Some people were also concerned about the HORRENDOUS DISC album. What was the problem? Why did it take three years to get it released?
Terry: Well, it's a long story. To put it in a nutshell, the problem wasn't with the band and it's desire to have the album put out. It had to do a lot with middleman problems.

Rudy: Alright. The only other thing that I want to make real clear before we start talking about ALARMA!: You are Terry Taylor. Who is Daniel Amos?
Terry: Daniel Amos was a name that was chosen out of the Bible, the Old Testament. It's the prophets, Daniel and Amos. We were a country band at the time. We thought it would be a little different to put a couple of names together that sounded like an old country gentleman sitting out on the fence, strumming his guitar. Of course, it has caused some problems: "Who's Daniel and who's Amos?" There's no Daniel Amos in the band.

Rudy: ALARMA! is really a three part album: The cover alone is worthy of mention; the music is worthy of mention; the literary content is worthy of mention. There's question as to who the Central Theme is -- You're obviously talking about Jesus.
But who is D.A. InterGalactica?
Terry: Well, we thought that might be a nice name for our correspondents. Actually, what it is, is our post office box. (Ha, ha) Where you can send your letters.

Rudy: I like that. Sure! You guys aren't Space Cadets, just Space Freaks!
Terry: No, no. I don't think so.

Rudy: What about the "Rebel Base"?
Terry: We Christians are really a small band of people who are standing against sin and worldliness and we're sort of rebelling against that. We're standing up for righteousness and for Jesus Christ. That is how we apply it to the title of our production company.

Rudy: Is it right to be rebels -- with or without a cause -- as Christians?
Terry: Oh, I certainly think it is! I think that we are rebels. The ultimate that will happen will be the return of Jesus Christ to overthrow this world system as we know it, and put up his own kingdom. So I think we are rebels of righteousness, and I see nothing wrong with that concept.

Rudy: OK. I want to touch on the writing in the inside cover of ALARMA! Who wrote that? Was it a vision?
Terry: I wrote that. It was really spawned from a lot of influences as well as much of what God has put upon my heart. I'm a real addict of fantasy type stories. George McDonald, C.S. Lewis, Tolkien and some of those people had a great influence on me. So I felt it appropriate to try a hand at it and have it express what was being expressed musically in ALARMA!. It will be one of those continuing stories that will continue through the next three albums.

Rudy: I'm really glad we got a chance to talk with you this afternoon, Terry. It appears that you're saying in ALARMA!: "Christians, it's time to not look for the comfortable life. It's time to look for the Kingdom, God's Kingdom. And that means living what you're talking about." Is that fair to say?
Terry: I think that's a fair assessment, yes.

Rudy: Why did you chose this particular kind of music? A lot of people are going to say this is punk rock and God is not in this ALARMA! album.
Terry: Well, first of all, I'm very familiar with styles of music, and anyone who knows what punk music is all about knows that this isn't punk music.

Rudy: Well, now, Terry, it does come awfully close to the B-52s and a type of music that is classified to the average Joe in this country as punk rock.
Terry: Yeah. I think there is a distinction once again between punk music and new wave music. New wave music is basically rock 'n' roll music that was around in the late '50's or early '60's. I really believe that punk music embraces life-style. Punk music is basically protest music of the '80's. I'm aware of some of the problems that people have had with listening to ALARMA!. But we in the Body of Christ have always had problems of this sort. I think by expanding our musical horizons a little bit we're able to paint pictures. Side 2 of SHOTGUN ANGEL was a nutshell view of Revelation. It uses a lot of musical forms to express feelings, such as anger, or sorrow, or mystery -- all sorts of different emotions and different pictures, and that's what I think we continue to do in ALARMA!

Rudy: Do you think this is an album for non-Christians?
Terry: The lyrical content is for the Christians and the Body of Christ. I think it has value to the unbelieving world. I think as a tool, it really, really can be used.

Rudy: Well, I'm glad that we had this chance to talk to you. Most everything that I think people were questioning in letters was answered today, Terry.
Terry: Well, I appreciate it! I just want to share one thing with the audience: "Little children, love one another."