I enjoy celebrating Easter Sunday by watching Godspell, which is as close as I wanna get to church. The film, based on the stage play of the same name, came out in 1973. That same year another musical about Jesus Christ, of the Superstar variety, was also released. I prefer Godspell, mainly because it’s so wacky. The gist of it is that Jesus (Victor Garber), John the Baptist/Judas (David Haskell), and a bunch of hippie disciples are traipsing around an empty New York City reenacting parables, singing, and dancing. It’s like a Sunday school lesson on acid. The cast, led by a baby-faced Garber, is very talented. You also have beautiful shots of early 70s NYC, including the recently built World Trade Center. The music is my favorite part, though. These are my top three songs.
Day by Day
When the hippie troupe first comes together, they sing this number while building their home base in an old junk yard. It’s a fun one to sing and clap along to, if the spirit moves you.
By My Side
A beautiful ballad with perfect overlapping harmonies. I like how stripped down it is.
Turn Back, O Man
This sultry number contains the line, “Come here Jesus, I got something to show you”. WTF?? But, I’m here for it. They filmed this at the historic Andrew Carnegie mansion. Great setting.