The 1960s was a remarkable time for music.
The British invasion brought to the United States enduring bands like The Beatles, The Animals, The Rolling Stones, and The Who.
Then the California sound emerged with The Beach Boys, The Doors, Janis Joplin, and a host of other bands.
Other artists emerged quickly, namely, Cream (Eric Clapton), Led Zeppelin, and the inimitable Jimi Hendrix.
Then you had Bob Dylan who inspired many of these artists and vice versa.
What’s incredible to me about this time period is that virtually all of the above named musicians met each other, hung out together from time to time, listened to one another with adoration, and respected each other.
They would also play informally with one another at certain times. And even more encouraging, they inspired one another.
I’ve watched so many interviews with so many of these artists and marveled at how each of them would praise the others. Not just from afar, but because they took the time to get to know one another.
Each time, I’ve had two reactions.
One was awe. How incredible it was that these musicians, all playing for different bands and all enormously talented in their own right, respected each other and spoke well of each other in public.
Sure, I’m sure some struggled with hidden jealousy from time to time, but these artists paid attention to what their peers were doing. They gleaned from each other and they had a great deal of class to speak well of each other.
Some wrote songs based on the inspiration of others.
George Harrison once asked why Led Zeppelin didn’t write “love ballads.” In response, Jimmy Page wrote “The Rain Song.”
Dylan inspired John Lennon to write “Norwegian Wood” and “Nowhere Man” and many other songs.
Dylan moved to an electric sound in response to what the other musicians of the mid-60s were doing.
“Pet Sounds” by The Beach Boys inspired “Sgt. Pepper” by The Beatles.
And on and on.
They all pushed one another to create better work.
Their networking relationships created better music for the entire world.
My second reaction to all of this is a troubling question: “Why can’t those whom God is using on the Christian landscape today have these sorts of relationships?”
Why can’t speakers and authors who are turning the sod in the Christian world have places to hang out, dialogue, get to know one another and inspire each other?
Name your top 5 favorite authors . . . why aren’t they all spending time together, socially?
Why aren’t they learning from each other?
I’m voicing one of my dreams here.
As most of you know, I’ve collaborated with several authors on projects over the years and will continue to do so.
I’ve shared the conference platform with a number of other authors and speakers in various conferences over the years.
But I’m talking about something more focused, more intentional, and more substantial.
Something like what we saw happen among the greatest music artists in the 1960s. And those people weren’t even Jesus followers!
Perhaps this will always stay a dream. But I suppose it can’t hurt to articulate it.
Maybe one of you will put this post in the right hands to make something like this happen . . . somewhere, someday.
If it ever does, no matter how foundational, count me in.
Which speakers/authors would you like to see hanging out and inspiring one another?