Skip to comments.Seals and Crofts: Remembering a musical plea for life
Posted on 01/19/2019 10:30:42 AM PST by SeekAndFind
Jim Seals and Dash Crofts, March 16, 1975. | Warner Brothers Records/Public Domain
This month marks the 46th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, which made abortion-on-demand the law of the land. It also marks the 45th anniversary of what is arguably the most courageous act in pop culture history.
In the early 1970s, the Texas-born duo of Jim Seals and Dash Crofts was at the peak of their popularity. After spending a few years in a band with Glen Campbell, among others, they began to perform under the name Seals and Croft.
It took a few years, but eventually they hit it big. Their 1972 album Summer Breeze reached number 7 on the Billboard album charts. The 1973 follow-up, Diamond Girl, did even better, peaking at number 4. The record company was happy and so were fans. Both were looking forward to what was next from Seals and Croft.
While preparing to record their next album, the wife of one of their recording engineers handed Seals a poem shed written after watching a documentary on abortion. It opened with the lines Oh little baby, youll never cry, nor will you hear a sweet lullaby.
Seals set the poem to music and the result was the song Unborn Child, which also became the name of their new album.
The song opens gently, but unsparingly depicts the reality of abortion. The unborn child is a tiny bud that grows in the womb only to be crushed before it can bloom with an emphasis on the word crushed.
To put it mildly, this is not what their label, Warner Records, had in mind. After all, this was less than a year since Roe had been handed down, and abortion was, if nothing else, controversial. Add in the duos unapologetic and urgent plea for women contemplating abortion to stop, think it over and its no surprise their record label had some concerns.
As Jim Seals later recalled, the label said, This is a highly controversial subject, we advise that you dont do this. To which they replied, But youre in the business to make money; were doing it to save lives. We dont care about the money.
When the album released in early 1974, the labels fears came true: Radio stations refused to play the title track, and pro-abortion groups picketed Seals and Croft concerts.
As music writer Bill de Young wrote twenty years later, The critics tore the record to pieces, and Seals and Crofts with it. . . . Unborn Child hurt Seals and Crofts reputationit was as if they had crossed that thin line, that sacrosanct divider that separated their music from their religious beliefs.
About those religious beliefs. Seals and Croft werent Christians. They were Bahais, a religion that originated in 19th-century Persia.
I mention this because in the years since Unborn Child, I cant think of a single mainstream pop song that has taken on the subject of abortion in such a direct and unapologetic fashion. The closest one I can think of is Nick Cannons song Can I Live?, which wasnt a hit. In fact, I can only think of one song by a Christian artist, Killing Thousands, by 2nd Chapter of Acts.
Wouldnt it be wonderful if the Christians whove crossed over into mainstream pop music over the years were as willing to defend what they believe as two Bahai converts were forty-five years ago?
As Seals and Crofts later said, its worth the risk. I think we got more good results out of it than bad Dash Crofts said. a lot of people called us and said, Were naming our children after you, because you helped us decide to save their lives with that song. That was very fulfilling to us.
Please, come to BreakPoint.org, click on this commentary, and Ill link you to the Seals and Crofts song, Unborn Child, as well as the two others I mentioned today. And dont miss the BreakPoint Podcast this week: first, Scott Klusendorf and I discuss how to answer pro-abortion arguments effectively. And Lila Rose joins me to talk about the state of the pro-life movement. Again, thats the BreakPoint Podcast at BreakPoint.orgor wherever you listen to podcasts.
Wasnt Jim Seals the brother of England Dan (Seals) of England Dan and John Ford Coley fame?
It is Cisco Texas. My Mom is from there and I can remember well visiting relatives there. Dash Crofts and my cousin were friends and I remember hanging with them back when I was 10 or so. Who knew?
Yes he was Dan’s brother. Very talented family.
Type O Negative has an anti-abortion song and a Seals & Crofts cover.
These Three Things:
The salvation through Christ can’t be bought. It’s free. You can demean Christians all you want, the consequences are yours... and they are eternal. Harden not your heart and let go of the hate.
rebelling and denying the LORD, turning away from our God, speaking oppression and revolt, conceiving and uttering lies from the heart.
For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will also be ashamed of him when He comes in His Father’s glory with the holy angels.”
If anyone is ashamed of Me and My words, the Son of Man will be ashamed of him when He comes in His glory and in the glory of the Father and of the holy angels.
“But whoever denies Me before men, I will also deny him before My Father who is in heaven.
But whoever denies Me before men will be denied before the angels of God.
2 Timothy 2:12
if we endure, we will also reign with Him; if we deny Him, He will also deny us;
Too bad you simple-minded zealots can’t see the good that these people have done with their work.
“For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.” Being saved from sin and receiving eternal life cannot take place by our works. Getting into heaven requires faith in Jesus Christ.
Praying for you brother.
Our HS class (probably none too seriously) considered "We May Never Pass This Way Again" for our senior song.
Jim's brother Billboard book, S&C's "Darlin'" and ED&JFC's "I'd Really Love to See You Tonight" overlapped their top 40 runs in the summer of '76. I turned 15 that summer (between 9th and 10th grades) and remember them fondly.
Having My Baby had a controversial line in it the caused an uproar, too.
One of my favorite 70s bands. Hummingbird is stunningly beautiful.
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