Rock'n'Roller to Holy Roller - Mylon's own Story
recorded the first song I wrote
when I was only seventeen.I was stationed at Fort Jackson,South
Carolina,at the time,and had just f inished
basic training in the Army.My sergeant was
an alcoholic,and it was well known that for a
pint of "Jack Black "whiskey you could get a
weekend pass.That weekend I hitchhiked to
Memphis to meet my parents at the National
Quartet Convention where my mother asked
me to sing my new song "Without Him ".Elvis
was there in a side room recording songs to
consider for his next album.
When I joined the army,
I was 17 years old,5'4"tall
and didn ’t even shave.I was
making $84 a month as a
private when I got my f irst
check from Elvis ’s publishing
company.Those checks kept
coming every three months.
There came a day when I
sat down to f igure things out.
My choice was simple:I could
write another song,or I could
stay in the army for 800 years
to earn the same amount of money.It was
a career crossroads,and I decided to go for
In one year,126 artists around the world
recorded my songs.So I took the money from
writing and started a band that later became
the Atlanta Rhythm Section.My family were
gospel singers and I loved to sing gospel
music,but the music I was writing was too
contemporary for them.
Shortly thereafter I got my f irst car.All of
a sudden the girls in high school,who would
never even talk to me before,were available to
me.They still didn ’t say much to me,but they
were riding in my new car,if you know what I
mean.I thought that in life you had to f ight for
what you wanted,and that you only got what
you fought for.I thought it was up to me to
get to the top."Was I ever wrong!"
Mylon's first band
I wanted to be a star more than anything.
In the 70 ’s I recorded an album with Alvin Lee
from ‘Ten Years After ’.Some of the artists
on that album were George Harrison from the
Beatles,Boz Burrell from Bad Company,Ron
Wood from the Rolling Stones,Mick Fleetwood
from Fleetwood Mac,Steve Winwood from
Traff ic,and Ian Wallace from King Crimson.
We had what they called in the early 70 ’s,
a "super group ".Between the members of
the group we had sold more than 400 million
records.Some of the others that I eventually
recorded or toured with were Eric Clapton,Billy
Joel,Little Richard and the Who,Mountain,ZZ
Top,and Grand Funk Railroad,etc.
I was living and recording in England,
rehearsing for the biggest tour of my life when
one night I took too much heroin.When
they found me,the cigarette I was smoking
had burned down between my fingers and into
the flesh.They could smell the burning skin
and had come in to check on me.I wasn ’t
breathing.I had been out so long that by the
time they brought me around,
my brain cells were damaged.
It so spaced me out that I
could not even remember the
words of songs I had written,
much less lead a world tour.
Suddenly it was all over.
I had wrecked my hopes and
drugged away my dreams.
Mylon the rock star, 1972
that point I knew I needed
God ’s help.Opening a Gideon
Bible I had picked up some-
where,I lit up the hash I had
been told would help me with-
draw from heroin and began to
read.It took seven long years
for me to learn what total com-
mitment to Jesus really means.
At that point I still didn ’t
understand that being "born
again "is quite different than
being "caught again ".True
repentance is when you say
to Jesus,"I have been doing
things my way;I want to start
doing things Your way."
It was 1980 when I f inally
made Jesus my Lord at a
Christian concert by a band
called the 2nd Chapter of Acts.
When Buck Herring (who I had
worked with in the past),led
the people in a prayer at the
end of the concert,I made that
prayer mine and have never
been the same since.
That was on a Saturday
night,and he told me I ought
to go to church the next day.
Well,I had three feet of hair
and no tie.They told me that
Christians were a family,but to
be honest,most of them didn ’t
seem to be too happy about God letting me
in.That building was packed,except around
where I was sitting.
When I f irst committed my life to Jesus.I
went to my pastor and said,"Hey,I don ’t know
anybody who doesn ’t get stoned.All my friends
stay up all night.I ’m in Rock-n-Roll and I have
contracts to fulf ill."
He was wise and let God change my friends
and me.It was actually a little comical as I
helped out around the church.What a change!
How many janitors do you know who drive
$100,000 cars?The church paid me $175 a
week when I was used to making between eight
and ten thousand dollars a day.On my way
to work one day a windshield wiper broke off
my 930 Turbo Porsche.It cost me $185 to
As you can imagine,I had a bit of a culture
shock,but I ’m so glad that God was ready to
take me just like I was.At that point,Jesus was
the only one who wanted my life.
The f irst time I ministered to anyone was
on an FGBMFI outreach with Jimmy Rogers to
the Jackson State Prison in Georgia,where I
shared my testimony.Christianity is simple.
First,you give Jesus your life and He gives you
His.And secondly,we change and grow up in
Him by the renewing of our minds.In other
words,we study His Word and think about
what He said until we learn to think,talk,and
live like Him.
Late one night in August 1989,my band,
"Broken Heart ",and I were on our way to a
Christian concert in Nebraska when my heart
suddenly hurt so badly that I couldn ’t breathe;
I couldn ’t move.The doctors later told me that
all my years of cocaine and heroin abuse had
caused the heart attack.Approximately one
third of my heart had quit working and they
told me I had to stop travelling and take it easy.
I didn ’t have any answers.
It was obvious to me that if
God didn ’t do something fast,
I would be going to heaven
soon.I needed a miracle!
In January 1990,my band
and I took our previously sched-
uled concert tour of the Philip-
pines.The doctors told me
not to go.I arrived very
tired,in a lot of pain,and
scared.Wandering around the
hotel gift shop in Olongapo,
Northern Luzon,I came across
a book that changed my life.It
was entitled,"God ’s Medicine "
by Kenneth Hagen.When I
tried to buy it the lady said,
"I don ’t know where it came
from;we don ’t sell those here.
You can have it."
I read it from cover to cover
and then started looking up
the Bible verses it quoted.Dur-
ing that week we saw 10,200
kids make a commitment to
Jesus,but I was in pain the
whole time.Back at home I
continued to study the Bible
verses from that little book.
In March 1990,I went down
to my brother ’s condo in Pan-
ama City,Florida,to fast and
pray.On the third day I was
walking up the beach,praying
in the Spirit.Just that morn-
ing I had said,"Father God,
I know the Word says that
the truth will set me free.
Evidently there is something
in the Bible I don ’t understand
yet because I am not free.
Please send someone to help
Walking along the beach,I
passed a woman,who was later
introduced to me as Gloria
Copeland.As I passed by,
the Lord told her that He had
called me to do something and
that He wanted to heal me.
When a mutual friend later
introduced us,she remembered
me.She and her husband,
Kenneth,got right down to
business.He told me "my wife
doesn ’t play church.If God told her He is going
to heal you,then it is a done deal."
"Before we pray,we need to be in agreement.
If I am praying in faith and you are just hoping,
we are not going to be in agreement."He
began showing me Bible verses about healing.
After the Copelands laid hands on me and
prayed,I didn ’t feel any different physically,but
I knew something had changed in my spirit,
and I believed God had healed me.
Back home in Atlanta,I started telling
everyone that I was healed.Some people told
me I was putting God to a foolish test by
continuing to tour,but I just replied,"God said,
‘My words are life to those who f ind them and
health to all their f lesh,and by His stripes I
am healed ’!"
Night and day I immersed myself in the
Bible.Just one year after meeting the Cope-
lands in Florida,I returned to the beach and
was able to do a lot more than just walk on
the beach.I had a great time body surfing
and riding jet skis.
While driving in the car along the beach,
a song came to me which eventually would
become number one on the Christian charts:
"Invincible love …was all that could save me …"
It is much more than a song to me.It is my
continual testimony of God ’s love,mercy,and
Today,I am stronger than before the heart
attack.I play racquetball,tennis,scuba dive,
ride my Harley,and even ski down mountains
with my wife,Christi.God has also renewed
my mind.The Bible says that if any man is in
Christ Jesus,all things become new.Best of all
I am on way to heaven and I am enjoying the trip!
Mylon and his wife,Christi