There really are two climaxes within the third novel of The Prodigal Band Trilogy, called The Prodigal Band. There is the one at the end where the band is victorious over the evil-controlled Mark Besst. Then there is the one right in the middle of the novel where the prodigal band Sound Unltd is nearly killed or seriously injured by a bomb planted under a seat on their private jet at the airport in Philadelphia.
This snippet post deals with the first climactic event. To begin the story that concludes in this post is the notion of why the prodigal band is called Sound Unltd in the first place. In Chapter One of Battle of the Band, the angelic Tooters tell their messenger, the ‘witch of the Hovels,’ what will become the name of a ‘rock band’ of the future that will carry out the will of The Creator. “Their name will be sound, unlimited.”
To be called Sound Unltd, they had to change their original band name, the Smash. They felt compelled to change the name since original bassist Keith was compelled to quit the band by his father, as Keith thought he made his girlfriend Jarris pregnant. To replace Keith, they brought in his replacement Mick as well as keyboard-synthist Bryan. At a meeting in late 1985 with their then-manager Billy Prestin, they decide to change their name, on ‘orders’ of the ‘witch,’ who gives drummer Tom the name change. From Chapter Three of The Prodigal Band:
“And their name will be ‘sound, unlimited’.”
To the surprise of everyone who’d heard the Smash before and after Mick and Bryan joined the band, there was virtually no difference on bass and a sure hit on synth even though McClellan had never played in a rock band before. And even though Bry actually admitted to preferring classical and country music. Through and through, he was a Motorduke-riding biker who almost made it into Walltown’s only motorcycle gang except he refused to crawl around in the city’s sewer system during initiation. And his synth-building partner, Reg Lewis, wouldn’t have anything to do with him if he had joined that motorcycle gang.
But the Smash, known for punk and rock hard metal, Marauder-style music, and, in deference to Erik’s virtuosity, softer ballads which sounded like rock arias, felt persuaded by some popular demand that such a radical personnel change required a name change as well.
Another band practice. Almost every night now. The Smash used the same warehouse building for practice sessions the Marauders had used a few years back. They needed the large space now because they’d become a Walltown institution, and now with a synth player, they attracted more talent seekers from further away, even London.
Break time after two straight hours of Jack’s slave driving. Tom snuck out a back door by himself into a lonely back alley for a cigarette. Which almost fell out of his mouth when he saw the Witch of the Hovels approach him.
“I hear you boys are changing your band name.”
Tom couldn’t hear her footfall. She floating or what? And why is it she always shows up when I’m alone? “Yeh. Would you believe our fans’re making us do it?” Like I’m really replying to this crazy old woman!
“I have a name for you. You will be called ‘sound, unlimited’.”
Snort. “Did you say, ‘sound unlimited’?” What the hell kinda name is that?
“Yes, young man, I said ‘sound, unlimited’.” For that is the name The Tooters had told her eight hundred years before, and that she would give the prophesied band that name.
Others began to appear, so she vanished in a flash.
(Later, after Tom rejoined the meeting)
Tom was tired of this issue and really wanted to keep ‘the Smash,’ so he blurted out what the old lady had hold him. “How about ‘Sound Unlimited’?”
“What?” The others screeched.
Billy responded, “Hmmm. ‘Sound Unlimited.’ Reminds me of a band back in my days. Music Incorporated. They had a couple o’ hits.”
Jack shot back. “Now that is absolutely the stupidest! Tom, just where the hell did you—Sound Unlimited? Unlimited? How bloody pretentious!”
Looked at Billy. “Music Incorporated? Now that name I can dig. Sounds businesslike, eh? But Sound Unlimited? I mean that is a bit much! We’ll be laughed off stage with that name! We’re not unlimited.”
And Billy was tired of Jack’s indecision. “Well that’s a damned sight better than ‘Sound, Ltd.,’ eh? Then they’d really laugh you off stage!”
New member Bryan cut in. “I like Sound Unlimited. It’s a name that shows our potential, eh? You need a big ego in show biz. You need a band name that gets notice.”
“Yeh,” Jack smirked, “especially when they throw you off stage, eh.”
To accommodate venue marquees, however, they shortened ‘unlimited’ to ‘unltd.’ And by the way, there was a mid-60s British rock band with a name similar to ‘Music Incorporated,’ called ‘Sounds Incorporated.’
Now, to conclude this ‘climactic’ snippet post within the middle of The Prodigal Band where Sound Unltd has just escaped possible death by bomb on their private jet. The bomb goes off when the jet lands at a London airport for the band to attend a phony Directorate meeting that was in fact a satanic Hellyon meeting arranged by the head of this secret society. Since the band, through spiritual forces of Good, is taken off the jet and placed in a spiritual void to be put back on the jet when it is safe to do so, they survive the bombing and then are picked up at the airport by their manager, Joe Phillips, in his limo.
Phillips is the son of the evil bankster and Hellyon leader Baron Torquay-Lambourgeau, a fictional bad guy molded after the Rothschild bankers, who are some of the elite rulers of this world who control the world’s currencies, among other things. But Phillips wants nothing to do with the evil designs of his father and others within the devil worshiping Hellyons and Novordo Club. He wants to live his own life and control his own life and wants no part in the evil promulgated by his father. But Phillips is an agnostic who doesn’t quite yet buy into the divinity of The Creator (God), Christ, and the Holy Spirit. That will change soon, as he brings the band to his hotel and then listens to their ‘revelations’ later and as he tells the band why they were called Sound Unltd. From Chapter Twelve of The Prodigal Band:
In Joe Phillips’ limo, on the outskirts of the airport, July 8, 2001, about 2 p.m.
“Your father’s behind it, Joe!” Jack didn’t even wait to sit down before his pronouncement. “We know he is, and we know you know it too.”
The manager of course believed this. “You’re right, I’m sure. And I’m sure you’re not the first ones they’ve tried to assassinate.”
“But we may be the first to survive an assassination, eh?” Keith shot out. “My dad warned me about folks like your dad a long time ago. But I thought it would never happen to us, right?”
“No one’s above my father’s evil plots. No one.”
The others snorted agreement.
“No one except God,” Jack said, perking up. “It was God who saved us, Joe. Like, He got us out of there in time, then put us back when it was safe. He knows, Joe, He knows!”
“You mean God? Actually lifted you up to heaven? You’re not serious.” Sarcastic laugh. But why would they make that up? They couldn’t make that up!
“We are, Joe. He saved us. Believe me. How else could we have survived?”
Joe noticed they all nodded their agreement with Jack. He gave a short “huh,” cocked his head and blurted out, “But did you—see Him? Did He talk to you?”
Six heads back and forth.
“No,” Jack said, “we didn’t see Him. But we heard a voice tell us our plane was on fire and when it was safe we’d be returned to it.”
They then described the whiteness, the calmness, the heavenliness.
“Are you sure it was heaven and not a UFO?”
“It seemed like heaven, right? It was huge, without end. No UFO in history could be that big.”
Joe conceded. “Okay, I hear you. And, if it was God who saved you, maybe there’s hope for the rest of us.”
Murmurs of agreement, but then it hit the manager. “So you say God saved you. Now I know you would not make that up. Who could make that up? And I know you boys have been involved in some pretty miraculous events. So my question is, could you please explain why? If God saved you from a likely bomb plot likely of my father’s design, why was there a plot, and why would God save you?” When Joe finished, he threw out his arms up into the air. “Please! Give me the why! I need to know!”
The tirade shook the six into a state of shock as they looked at each other, wondering who would attempt to explain to someone they thought was an atheist about what they universally believed to be their ‘mission of God’.
But since Jack was their leader—
“Okay, Joe, it’s like this. The fact that somehow God saved us today. That one-minute-miracle note last year in Walltown. When Erik and Keith were saved from death at the hospital in 1996. When we realized Swami’s crystals were a source of evil in 1994. When we went up to Walltown to get Keith back in the band and we got really drunk that night, but woke up in the morning—”
“And wrote ‘Let the Night Down.’ Yes, I know. You think a heavenly spirit—The Tooters, right? Gave you that song and others.” Joe started connecting the dots. “The connection between the song, ‘Where Do We Come From?’ and that Marauders’ song ‘Legend of the Prophesied Band.’ And, oh yeah, that witch you all claim to have seen that no one else can. The one you told me—was it you or was it Tom who told me this—the witch who told you to change your band name to ‘Sound Unltd’?”
As if he was coming out of a stupor, Tom exclaimed, “I told you about that?”
“One of you did. I know that much.”
“Because I was the one she told.”
“Now here’s the thing, why I mentioned that.” Happily excited, as he took out a cigarette. “Now until today when something or some entity saved you from possible death—I mean that bomb could have gone off over the Atlantic! Who would have saved you then? Until today, I never really believed in the possibility that God actually exists. I’ve never quite been an atheist, okay? More an agnostic, questioning God’s existence. Which is silly. Because of what my father is, I have always believed in the existence of evil. The devil. Call it what you will, because of my father and especially my grandfather, maybe the most evil person who ever lived.”
Joe lit the cigarette to compose his nerves. “So I believe this evil exists, but not its opposite? So I wondered if God existed, thinking surely something has to counteract evil. But I never could prove it, and I wasn’t going to believe the preachers and whatnot just because they made that claim. I’ve always wanted proof, just like I had proof that the devil had to exist because I’ve seen the results. Well, today I have proof. If you were taken out of the jet at the precise moment a bomb went off, only a God could have done that.”
Then he looked squarely at each of the six, eyes to eyes. “Only something unlimited could have done that.” For effect as eyes widened he repeated it. “Only something unlimited. Only God is unlimited!”
A collective gasp as they looked wide-eyed at each other.
“That is why God saved you. That is why some witch or spirit who likely had a connection to God gave you that name. You are called ‘Sound Unltd’ for a reason. God has given each of you an unlimited amount of talent.” Looked at Erik. “I mean, that note of yours was simply miraculous and can never again be duplicated, right?”
The singer was beside himself in humbleness.
“And the rest of you. Jack, you had maybe a year of guitar lessons, so how the hell did you learn to play that amp so bloody amazingly by learning from a guy you are light years ahead of in talent? Prestin didn’t gave you that talent, you had it all along. Mick, how did you learn to play about twenty stringed instruments at some small local music school nobody ever heard of? In a couple of years? Bry, how in the world did you ever develop your own synthesizer, even with Reg Lewis’ help? That synth is now the baseline, right? Tom—I mean, good God!—how did you learn to play drums the way you do when you only got exposed to them after you started living with Billy Prestin? That’s a miracle in itself!”
Then he turned to Keith. “And how the hell—and I don’t mean bass, you were brought up with it. But how the hell did you learn to play mandolin—which you played at Victoria Park—which you had never played in concert before, right?”
The bassist nodded.
“So how the hell did you learn to play mandolin in a freaking month? Six weeks?”
“Well, Mick taught—“
”In six weeks or less, Keith? Are you serious?” Drag on cigarette. “No, Keith. You don’t learn a brand new instrument in six weeks or less. Not without divine intervention!”
Keith flinched. “I dunno.”
“Come off it. Yes, you do know! All of you. All of you know why you have the talent you have. If there really is a ‘prophesied band,’ then you must be it. Then you must be the ones God is using somehow to bring the message from God to the youth, or to everybody for that matter. Like the song says, ‘the young will follow them, the young will follow Him.’ ‘Him” being God—or, more likely, Christ. There, I said it.”
The next post will be in early January, 2022, and may not be a snippet post, but something different. In the meantime, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
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The Prodigal Band Trilogy © 2019 by Deborah Lagarde, Battle of the Band © 1996 by Deborah Lagarde, The Prophesied Band © 1998 by Deborah Lagarde and The Prodigal Band © 2018 by Deborah Lagarde. Permission needed to copy any materials off this page.