Famous Love Song group founder performs Easter concert

Famed recording artist, Chuck Girard, performs at Easter concert

Photos and Story by Catherine Stachowiak

The day before Easter, Saturday March 30, pioneer of the contemporary Christian music scene, Chuck Girard performed live at Mountain View Baptist Church. 

Girard traveled from Nashville to Lake Isabella, yet ended up getting laid over from Dallas when he missed his plane, before he came through Phoenix.  However he still was not late to perform his “Easter Revolution” concert. 

“I was in a group called Love Song way back in 1970.  I think it’s fair to say we were the first Christian rock band to become well known in the United States,” Girard told his audience. “In the recent movie, the Jesus Revolution, our band was depicted.” 

Yet Girard had a famed music career long before his gospel music career began. Girard became a member of the group, The Castells in his early teens and afterwards Girard appeared on American Band Stand performing with his surf-rock band The Hondells. Later a couple of his songs were featured on Ambrosia albums and he contributed to some Ambrosia sound tracks.

Along with John Mehler, in 1970, Girard became a founding member of Love Song.  He wrote most of the songs in Love Song and others with his band mates. 

Girard has had a successful career as a solo artist in the Christian contemporary realm since 1975 and appeared in the concert film and documentary First Love from Exploration Films in the late 1990s.  

Girard gave a public testimony in the 1970s about how he searched for God for years when he was experimenting with drugs in the hippie culture and then went to live in Hawaii in a cave.  He later realized a place wouldn’t lead him to God and found the Bible passage in Matthew 7:7-8.  “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.” 

Girard knew if he sought after God he’d ultimately find Him.  So he continued his search for God in various religions, Eastern philosophy, Buddhism and Timothy Leary’s experimentation.  Girard realized some of the philosophies he sought included their version of Jesus but he never really gave the true Jesus a chance. 

He ultimately discovered the simplicity of the Gospel. “I’d been making such a heavy thing out of it,” he said in his TV testimony.  “And I just heard, Jesus died on the cross to save you, because no man can make it.”

About the time his other band mates, from the out of the Laguna California dope scene, became Christians, Girard came to the Lord after hearing a Calvary Chapel, Chuck Smith sermon. Being a musician he wanted to dedicate his talent to the Lord thereafter and formed Love Song.

“His grace and his love is just so abundant. And that’s just the answer to the world’s problems. And there is no other answer,” he said in his 1970s televised testimony on Kathryn Kuhlman’s weekly show.

Girard told his Kern Valley audience, Saturday, he is currently finishing up a documentary of the story behind his group Love Song, which he’s been working on for four years. His years as one of the Jesus People, during the Jesus Movement era, which was a spiritual awakening, included an acquaintance with famous Calvary Chapel founding evangelists Lonnie Frisbee and Greg Laurie, as well as Calvary Chapel founding pastor Chuck Smith.

He also said that the movie Jesus Revolution, though it was a tribute to his band’s name, and those he knew, was definitely fictional and not completely accurate to exact events or people he knew.