Saturday, May 12, 2018

Blast from the past: GTA Sings "My Way"


That song pretty much sums up GTA's life and the life of most all of the splinter group leaders. In 2018 they are still doing it their way.

23 comments:

Byker Bob said...

The first time I heard Frank Notsohotra do this song, I took an instant dislike to it. It is the anthem of a self-righteous, self-justifying egomaniac. We have to remember that when this song first made the hit parade, Led Zeppelin was debuting. So, clearly, there were better choices in music. Why would GTA want to sing a piece of egotistical crap when he could move most of the brethren to tears with his rendition of “In the Garden”? This is yet another example of the sort of mental conflicts which were present in and caused by the WCG. Armstrongism can never be made to be cool or even relevant in a popular cultural context, no matter who attempts to make it so. Some of the church people also tried to glom on to “The Impossible Dream”. That song sucked and didn’t rock either, but it made more sense from a WCG perspective.

BB

Anonymous said...

GTAs rendition is not Frank Sinatra quality, but it's not bad. He certainly physically aged well. What a shame that he spiritually bombed out. You can be the bosses son, but there's some things daddy can't give you, especially if daddy is lacking as well.

Hoss said...

I remember GTA mocking My Way on radio.
A church member offered The Impossible Dream as Special Music...

Anonymous said...

At least GTA had the honesty to sing the song Sinatra's way. How often in WCG and the splinters have we heard it mashed into "I did it God's way" during special music?

Anonymous said...

No thanks, I prefer Judas Priest or Rush.

DennisCDiehl said...

To me, Ted was complex, conflicted and gifted with charisma. I don't think he wanted to be in the place he found himself but perhaps felt, under pressure, from Dad to fill the position Richard would have filled more easily had he not been killed. I can imagine him growing up in a rather loveless home. Loma did not seem to be the most loving and affectionate mom one could have known. Herbert's actions lend credibility to this as well. He as much as admitted this in a "Missing Dimension of Sex" class he showed up for just to talk. I thought he revealed more personally than was wise, but I imagine he needed to talk.

Ted did flee to the Navy and got a taste of freedom I am sure that he craved. Ted could have made good at anything he did. Perhaps the combination of fear, guilt and shame brought him back and kept him in it seeking personal approval and his own redemption however he defined it. Ted wanted to be liked and I sure that ran rather deep with his upbringing.

People are complex and religion, especially being who he ended up to be, forces a person to wear masks as they struggle with being what other expect them to be but won't do themselves and who he wanted to be or actually was. People don't change much unless what they are doing might kill them. But they don't change much because of a "repentance and baptism" experience. Everyone I knew, including myself, just went back to being what I already was and have not changed much since baptism. Whatever the Holy Spirit that leads into all truth and makes you something you are not is, it escaped me and everyone I know for the most part. I imagine the same for Ted. Richard would have been a Dave Pack type in demanding this or that because of his perception of God and obedience or else. Ted seemed not at all like Richard or his Dad. He faked it until he maked it, but he never could fool himself.

He was a guy hard not to like even through the misteps. He may have subconsciously let lots of folk who struggled with being human off the hook giving them hope that they weren't so evil and the only ones filled with vanity, jealously, lust and greed along with being worms and the "cream of the crude" as we all knew we must be or God would not have called us as the "foolish of the world". I.E. Stupid and ignorant.

The Church was not really good on one maintaining their individuality, self respect and independence.

Lake of Fire Church of God said...

Perhaps I am biased toward a familiar voice from long ago, but I like the Garner Ted version of "My Way" over the Frank Sinatra version.

The photo collage in the video takes Garner Ted from Worldwide Church of God to Church of God, International to the grossly misnamed Intercontinental Church of God. With each Church succession, Garner Ted's reach was further diminished until he was a low wattage work. It had to eat Garner Ted up to be ousted and excumicated by his father and to be the heir apparent to WCG no longer. I left WCG in 1976 and moved to Drake University in Des Moines studying for my MBA. My family kept me informed of what was happening in the Church. When the scandal hit and the subsequent Receivership occurred, I use to spend time at Drake's library reading every Los Angeles Times article I could find as they covered the power struggle between Herbert and Garner Ted. Just because I was out of the Church doesn't mean I wasn't interested in what was happening in the Church. On Saturday nights in Des Moines, I would listen to Garner Ted's broadcast on WOAI - San Antonio's 50,000 Watt AM powerhouse. I remember seeing an advertisement in the Des Moines Register newspaper following his ouster reading "Come Join Garner Ted Armstrong for the Feast in Jekyll Island".

Following the power struggle and Garner Ted's final meeting with Herbert in Arizona stating "I could destroy you" (I interpret that to mean GTA knew the truth about Herbert's incest with sister Dorothy), father and son never reconciled. Once a national celebrity and personality (the only Church celebrity we ever had), Garner Ted was disinherited and the rug was pulled out from under his celebrity status. America soon forgot about Garner Ted Armstrong on the national stage. That had to be hard for GTA. And to live to see the splintering break-up of his Father's religious empire and legacy had to hurt in retrospect after a lifelong movement in which he was an integral part. How many people came into contact with WCG and drawn into it due to the magnetic personality of Garner Ted Armstrong?

Richard

Hoss said...

Ted was complex, conflicted and gifted with charisma

I read that Ted had ambition to be an actor.
As Maxwell Smart might have put it, If only he had used his charisma for niceness instead of evil...

What About The Truth said...

As Dennis Deihl correctly said, GTA was a man who never wanted to enter the ministry. He said this many times in interviews. The church tended to do this too often - pushing people into leadership roles and the ministry against their will. The resulting actions from such people were mixed, but mostly it was easy to detect the disdain for their now given office. Some of these men became expert at delegating everything so they wouldn't have to do any of the work required. The ministers, being required to speak often, let their words tell you where their heart was. One example from a minister in the 80's that I heard speak at a church I was visiting thundered in a sermon; "God's church is not all about health and wealth". I would guess those two along with marriage would be the top counseling subjects for a minister and this minister made it clear he didn't want to deal with it anymore. I found out later from this minister's friend that he never wanted to be in the ministry but was pushed into from those in Pasadena.

Unfortunately GTA's craving for adulation and the get way of life that his dad often spoke about doomed him. If he would have had a King David like repentance there would have been a different story written about him, but the tag "America's playboy preacher" is the one most people are going to remember him by.

Allen Dexter said...

I don't like the term "Notsohotra." Ted used it a lot, and I'm sure there's an element of jealousy in it. He should have been a Hollywood entertainer, and he probably would have been a roaring success, like Sinatra. His moral lapses wouldn't have counted so much against him there. I have a CD of Sinatra greats, and for all his faults, no worse that Ted's, he was a great entertainer. He fought his way to the top, and a lot of people are jealous of his achievements, but you can't denigrate what he did with his life. He was no slouch. I happen to like his music. He will fade into the mists of entertainment history soon enough.

Anonymous said...

The fact HWA had such hatred towards his son that he wasn't man enough to forgive GTA and also both father & son were cut from the same cloth shows the mindset of both of them I don't know why anybody would ever want a part of their church legacy.

Byker Bob said...

There are so many factors which control success, fame, and fortune, and not only the attainability, but also the sustainability. There are shooting stars, and there are those who become legends. And those in between. Often, good looks and raw talent are not the controlling factor. It is also the resources contained by the environment in which those ingredients are developed and nurtured. And the Zeitgeist. Remove one or more of the ingredients, and the chemistry of the entire compound is lost.

I’ve often wondered how trapped GTA must have felt. His problems surfaced at the very time when he had risen in popularity above his father. He might have seen that as being his ticket out of entrapment, forgetting that the one thing he could not break was his father’s power base. HWA did not believe in retirement, and retained his power way beyond his prime, and well into his declining years.

I liken GTA to well known rock stars who were once popular and acclaimed, but who eventually became tired of the corporate entities in their industry, and being “handled” by them, so went off to ply their craft in smaller more intimate venues. GTA participated in many of the same excesses that rock stars do. He probably accumulated a degree of Solomonic wisdom through his life experiences. Still, whether we are some of those who left Armstrongism, or some who continued in it, it is difficult to see GTA as being other than a tragic figure. Those of us who found him likeable must temper our opinions in deference to some of the ladies we’ve often heard about. To my knowledge, nobody has ever raised this possibility, but out of the 200 or whatever, I’m sure that some of them actually hold warm memories.

BB

Connie Schmidt said...

I think a more appropriate Frank Sinatra song for GTA to have sung would have been...

"Strangers In the Night"...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LSmfj90qB3k

Strangers in the night
Exchanging glances
Wondering in the night
What were the chances
We'd be sharing love
Before the night was through?

Something in your eyes
Was so inviting
Something in your smile
Was so exciting
Something in my heart told me I must have you
Strangers in the night, two lonely people
We were strangers in the night
Up to the moment when we said our first hello
Little did we know
Love was just a glance away, a warm embracing dance away

And ever since that night
We've been together
Lovers at first sight
In love forever
It turned out so right
For strangers…

Anonymous said...

The photograph slideshow, the singing my way makes it quite sad knowing the spiritual situation COG landscape is in. The current state of COG land is not all GTA's fault but he did contribute to it.
I think it's sad because the GTA did indeed do it his way and his way has left many high and dry. He turned out to be the hare, and not the tortoise.

Dennis Diehl said...

Yrd also expressed a dislike for Johnny Carson but it seemed more jealousy. They were two peas in a pod

Anonymous said...

As much as I've heard COG ministers condemn that song from the pulpit, this is downright bizarre.

Anonymous said...

Having grown up in worldwide, I was always sensed a great amount of jealousy from some of the other so called big shots in the ministry towards Ted. Let's face it, Ted had more speaking ability and natural charisma than most of the of the other jerks combined. I remember the minister in Birmingham bragging about what a good friend he was of Ted's shortly before a combined service in Montgomery Ala sometime around 1978. Shortly after Ted's disfellowship, this same minister was up in the pulpit spewing venom about how "Ted had watered down God's Church"and generally went on 2.5 hour tirade. I was only a teenage but the thought in my head "with friends like these...

Hoss said...

"Strangers in the Night" - another song that got bad press from WCG. GTA roasted it on radio, and it was used as an example of suggestive teenage dance music in the WCG dating booklet.

RSK said...

He didnt do shit his way, he owed his standing to a favor from Daddy. Unless he means his part in the corruption.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Hoss wrote:
""Strangers in the Night" - another song that got bad press from WCG. GTA roasted it on radio, and it was used as an example of suggestive teenage dance music in the WCG dating booklet."

And yet GTA could not resist "strangers in the night" It was reported over the years that GTA could be seen cruising Hollywood Blvd and Santa Monica Blvd looking for sex, both female and male! It was known around Pasadena that Ted had proclivities early on for men, but his dad put the brakes on it by threatening to disenfranchise him early on from everything, including the money. Thus his raging libido needed an outlet and the AC coeds were on the receiving end of things.

Even in the mid 70's the stories floated around about Ted cruising Santa Monica Blvd, notorious for its gay prostitutes. Gerald Waterhouse also was also seen in gay bars in Hollywood. Rod Meredith has always remained suspect as to his hidden proclivities too. Given how much he was obsessed with gay sex, many said the was doing it because he was a closet gay man who could never reconcile who he was. He was also seen in the 1970's coming out of the Le Sexxe Shoppe in Old Town Pasadena, also a well known gay cruising spot in its darkened video arcade.

So any time I hear a COG ministers yelling about gay sex, adultery, alcoholics, and other things he finds perverted, I can almost guarantee that the man is doing the very thing he is bitching about. The Church of God is filled with hypocrites who love to preach one thing and in private do the very opposite. Can any of them really be trusted?

Anonymous said...

Even Sinatra didn't like "My Way". He felt it was self-aggrandizing and he got tired of singing it, but of course the audience expected it at his concerts.

Byker Bob said...

Somehow, I’m reminded of Pat Boone’s “No More Mr. Nice Guy” album of 1997. If GTA did have to “cover” a pop tune, at least he didn’t go so far as to ruin some Deep Purple or AC-DC.

BB