Daily Dispatches
John Elefante
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John Elefante

Former Kansas lead singer tells pro-life tale

Music

John Elefante, the former lead singer of the rock group Kansas, uses his newest album On My Way To The Sun to urge believers to take a bold stand for biblical truth and not cower to culture.

The best example of this is the wild 11-minute romp, “This Is How The Story Goes.” The fast-changing musical scenes, ethereal vocals, and lush instrumentation leave the listener with a sense of being in a fairy tale—a sweeping musical story that undergirds that old, old story: “The virgin had a son/and a stone was rolled away.”

Easy-breezy acoustic strumming in “We All Fall Short” doesn’t prepare listeners for the penetrating questions opening the song: “Why do we bury our treasure? Why do we stow it away?” Elefante argues that timidity is an act of incremental compromise which soon lands us in a “constant rain, with no shelter from the fray.” He sums it up: “If we stand on the fence, it’s not a life we can afford.”

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Yet the most compelling story Elefante tells is in the track “This Time,” a pro-life tale based on the circumstances surrounding his adopted daughter’s birth. The music video for the song was recently released on YouTube and racked up over 125,000 views in its first 10 days.

Described as “provocative” by the Huffington Post, the video features a young teen sitting in a bleak waiting room “frightened and all alone/watch the clock tick down knowing that her baby would soon be gone.” Abortion center workers escort the girl to the procedure room with meaningless reassurances, sung by Elefante with haunting nihilism: “Don’t worry you’ll be fine/you’re still young, we see this all the time.” Then an especially powerful chorus, supported by ascending violins, guitars, and drums, takes us into the heavenlies where God declares: “You’re not taking this one she’s mine/she’ll grow up and seek my name … you’re not taking her this time.”

Through high production value and artful musical composition, Elefante humanizes the girl, her struggle, and the life in her womb.  Yet the video is hampered by occasional use of caricature. The people at the abortion center are too reminiscent of Nurse Ratched, the antagonist from One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest, bullying the teen into an abortion even when she expresses doubts.

On the other hand, maybe it’s not so far from the truth. One Youtube user commented that Elefante’s video was all too close to the mark and shared her experience about being “scolded and silenced” at a Planned Parenthood facility. She warned that, “Once in the doors, it’s a fast train to death filled with psychological torment and high-pressure sales.”

However critics nibble at the edges, the video’s unassailable quality is that it’s based on truth. As Elefante explained to Jay Sekulow of American Center for Law and Justice, his daughter’s birth mother was a 13-year-old girl who was literally “seconds away from aborting her.” Something changed her mind, a decision that changed everything for that child and those who love her.

Jeff Koch
Jeff Koch

Jeff is a mortgage lender and graduate of the World Journalism Institute's Mid-Career Course. He lives with his wife and their seven children in the Chicago area.

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