Carman - A Christian Enigma

To many, a Christian who is one who attends church every Sunday, mumbles responses to a religious leader, and has no fun in life. To others it is someone who is no fun to be around because they are always informing you of your destiny. In reality there are a lot of views of Christians that cover the whole spectrum of opinions. But no matter what your thoughts are of the Christians you know or the stereotype that you place them, Carman blows them all out of the water.

Who's Dat?!

When you first see Carman in concert or watch one of his videos, you are left in no doubt that this man is an original.  He Italian good looks grab your attention.  His energy blows you away.  His message will forever change you.

Born in 1956 in an Italian family in New Jersey as Domenic Licciardello, Carman had music in his blood.  Playing the drums and the guitar instilled in him a love for music that to do this day has not diminished one little bit.  As a teenager and young adult he began a nightclub career that took him across the country.  But it was a concert that he was attending and not performing in that changed his life and millions of others for eternity.

Attending a concert put on by Andrae Crouch, Carman left his old life and accepted a new life as a born-again Christian.  Needless to say that this shocked many as his entire life changed and a new Carman emerged. 

It did not take him long to take his love for music and his new faith and combine them.  The results?  This young head-strong man who bucked the system at every turn began to do the same to Christianity.  He created a style of music that is ......  Carman.  He has such a unique style that covers every genre of music from country to hip hop to rap.  He showed the world that Christian music could be fun, funny, and beautiful without being boring. 

He released his first album in 1982 called "Some-of-Dat" that stopped mainstream Christianity cold and brought new life into it for a new generation.  But it was the release of "Champion" that brought a young generation to their news in love with this new music.

Here is a synopsis of Carmen's music and videos that I hope that you will enjoy.

The Champion

One of Carman's earliest songs that has basically become his flagship is The Champion.  Using Carman's unique storytelling style, it takes the message of Christ's death and resurrection and used it in an analogy of a boxing match.  The spectators are angels and saints on one side and demons and evil ones who have lived in the past.  Satan arrives as a contender.  Jesus appears to oppose him.  God oversees the fight.  After the rules are read, the fight commences with many jabs being thrown.  Toward the end, Jesus lowers His hands and removes all defenses and receives the deadly punch.  What happens next frightens Satan and sends him screaming in agony back to hell.

Sunday's On the Way

This song with a catchy beat describes the scene in hell during the three days that Jesus was dead. The demons were partying to celebrate their victory in His death though Satan was not too confident. The message is that Satan and death had no control of what was to be.  Sunday with a resurrected Lord was on the way.

Revival in the Land

This song and video is an amazing way to describe the effects of revival.  The main part of the song is set in hell where things are not looking so good.  Satan is demanding from one of his leaders what is going on.  Isn't everything they are doing up on earth working?  A few statistics are reviewed until finally the real reason for such damage in the underworld is revealed - Christians are falling to their knees in prayer and asking for revival in their hearts.  Not exactly what the prince of darkness was wanting to hear.

Lazarus

This song comes from the very early years of Carman's Christian music career.  It is the telling of Lazarus who was a dear friend of Jesus and who died.  He is in heaven and he is meeting the legends of old: Moses, David, Jonah, and more.  He listens as they tell of their experiences with God and then he begins to tell them how he knew Him in a different way.  That is until a voice calls his name and beckons him from the dead.  Lazarus was raised from the dead.

The Witch's Invitation

This story song recounts an event in which Carman was invited to a warlock's house.  The witch proceeds to brag about all the power he has and wants to know what Carman has to compare to that.  After a brutally honest telling of feeling intimidated, Carman proceeds to tell him that it is not the apparent power of today that matters but the power you hold as you lay dying and you face the next phase of your life.

Sunday School Rock

Here is where Carman's fun and versatility in song really comes out as he uses music reminiscent of the 50's and talks about Sunday School is going to be changed.  No more boring classes each week.  From now on it will be going on with a jive to it.

Soap Song

This is a comical song about the soap operas many of us watch.  It dates itself with many of the soap names such as The Edge of Night which has been off the air, but you will still get a kick out of the creativity used to bring us this song.

Satan, Bite the Dust!

This story song goes through the vices the devil can use to get a hold of someone like alcohol, pornography, and lying.  Carman rides in determined to vanquish them all which he does quite well.  This doesn't sit too well with Satan who makes an appearance and the showdown between good and evil is carried out.

These are just a small portion of the music that Carman has brought to us.  Check out his site at carman.org.  He tours the world with concerts that have broken attendance records.  Usually his concerts are free and a love offering is asked to help defray the expenses of it.  If you do find a concert near you, get there hours and hours in advance.  Since they are free, there are no tickets.  It is first come first get in.

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Comments 12 comments

Enlydia Listener profile image

Enlydia Listener 6 years ago from trailer in the country

Thankyou for reminding me about Carman...we had his music years ago...Lazarus, was one of my favorites...very powerful...gives you goosebumps just listening to it.


UlrikeGrace profile image

UlrikeGrace 6 years ago from Canada

So totally enjoyed this...talk about a memory revival...good job on this...and while the message Carman brought may have changed sound...the message is eternal and we do know that one day Jesus DID confront Satan and he DID bite the dust...

Blessings to you and thanks so much for this...I'm jumpin...


Cari Jean profile image

Cari Jean 6 years ago from Bismarck, ND

Great hub - I'm not a huge fan of his but do enjoy his music. He's really had quite the impact on the Christian music scene.


RevLady profile image

RevLady 6 years ago from Lantana, Florida

A wonderful reminder really. Like Cari, I never considered myself a fan, but found some of his work interesting. Thank you.

Forever His


Judah's Daughter profile image

Judah's Daughter 6 years ago from Roseville, CA

Just recently I remembered Carman and watched "The Witch's Invitation" ~ His unique ministry is powerful! It's great that you've written this hub and posted some awesome videos for all to enjoy. God bless!!


Paradise7 profile image

Paradise7 6 years ago from Upstate New York

That's a terrific performer with quite a message! Thanks for sharing with this hub!


samboiam profile image

samboiam 6 years ago from Texas

I used to listen to him all the time. It has been years since i have heard any of his music. Thanks for the reminder.


Habby profile image

Habby 6 years ago from College Station, Texas

RGraf, you've got a great hub here on Carman. Having become a believer as an adult, I wasn't familiar with his music until later on in life. You're definitely right about his creativity and unique contribution to Christian music.

Did you happen to mention which one was your favorite? :)


U Neek 6 years ago

Love this hub! Thanks for sharing about Carman, had heard of him but didn't know anything about his music/drama. He is an original.


Sunnyglitter profile image

Sunnyglitter 6 years ago from Cyberspace

I forgot about Carman! I used to love him.


Barb Walker 6 years ago

I heard Carman for the first time on an Arkansas radio station I received in SD. I have loved his music and great energy and witness for all of these years. I think it was in the 80's when I first heard songs from Sundays on the Way. I admire his love for the Lord and commitment to Him. Thanks, Carman for sharing your giftings with us.


trusouldj profile image

trusouldj 5 years ago from Indiana

Wish he was as prominent these days as he used to be. But it's like with the artists in Mainstream I guess; moving out the "old" to usher in the "new".

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