Mylon Rae LeFevre was born on October 6, 1944, in Gulfport, Mississippi. He hailed from the pioneering Southern gospel family, The LeFevres, the youngest son of Eva Mae and Urias LeFevre. Mylon showcased his vocal talents early on, singing and playing guitar with the family group.
Expelled from a private religious high school for participating in a local concert, Mylon displayed his songwriting skills at the age of 17 with his first song, “Without Him”. While stationed at Fort Jackson, South Carolina in the Army, he hitchhiked over 600 miles to perform at the National Quartet Convention in Memphis. It was there that he caught the attention of Elvis Presley, who later recorded “Without Him”, earning Mylon a royalty check of approximately $90,000. He used the money to buy his first Chevrolet Corvette.
Early Career: Stamps Quartet to Solo Albums
After his discharge from the Army, Mylon joined the Stamps Quartet (1966–1968) and embarked on his solo career. His first album, New Found Joy, was released on Skylite Records in 1964. In 1968, he released Your Only Tomorrow.
Frustrated by the lack of space for his contemporary Christian music, Mylon’s album Mylon, We Believe (1970) was a pioneering venture into what would later be known as “Jesus Rock”. The album features a rock & roll rendition of the classic song, “Gospel Ship”.
The 1970s and Early 1980s: The Holy Smoke Doo Dah Band
In 1970, Mylon signed with Columbia Records and formed The Holy Smoke Doo Dah Band. Over the next decade, he collaborated with renowned musicians like Eric Clapton, Elton John, Billy Joel, and others. His life took a darker turn when he overdosed on heroin in 1973. Seven months in a drug treatment program helped him regain his footing.
Transformation and Renewed Faith
Mylon’s life changed dramatically in 1980 after attending a concert by 2nd Chapter of Acts. Inspired by their message, he recommitted his life to Jesus Christ. He then returned to his home church, Mt. Paran Church of God in Atlanta, working as a janitor and attending Bible-study classes.
The Era of Broken Heart
Mylon formed a Christian band called The Gathering Ground Band, later renamed Airborn, and finally Broken Heart. Over the next decade, the band released 10 albums and traveled extensively. In 1987, the band won the Rock Album of the Year GMA Dove Award for Crack the Sky, and also received a Grammy Award for Best Gospel Performance.
Solo Career and Ministry
Mylon’s solo career resumed in 1992 with the release of Faith Hope and Love, featuring guest appearances from prominent Christian musicians. Following a heart attack in 1989, Mylon turned to preaching and teaching, ministering in churches, motorcycle rallies, and even international venues. His most recent release was Bow Down in 2003.
Personal Life and Death
Mylon’s discography spans over four decades, from his first album New Found Joy in 1964 to Bow Down in 2003.
Awards and Honors
Mylon received a Grammy Award in 1988 for Best Gospel Performance by a Duo or Group, Choir or Chorus for Crack the Sky. He also won the GMA Dove Awards for Rock Album of the Year in 1988.
Mylon LeFevre leaves behind a rich legacy of music, ministry, and transformation. He was a Gospel Music Hall of Fame inductee who touched countless lives through his songs and teachings. His journey from a young gospel singer to a rock musician, and finally to a devoted Christian minister, serves as an inspiration to many.
Mylon’s life story is one of talent, transformation, and unwavering faith, making him a cherished figure in both the world of music and ministry.