Formerly the manager of the rock band the Beatles’ Apple Records, Ken Mansfield—now an ordained minister—has uncovered many untold redemption stories of celebrities who used to be steeped in the rock ‘n’ roll industry and are now following Jesus.
In his recent book, Rock and a Heart Place, Mansfield shares the stories of how Jesus radically rescued rock stars and showed them grace—people like Brian “Head” Welch, Ruth Pointer and Rudy Sarzo. Some of them were steeped in decadence before coming to Christ and others managed to work their way through the rock industry while holding tightly to their faith and morals. Though unique, each story is held together by the common thread of God’s grace.
Mansfield was at first hesitant to write this book, as it would have required prying into the private lives of famous entertainers and dredging up memories of his own past. But as he began interviewing people, he found himself connecting with their stories of degeneracy and forgiveness. “One of the artists actually made me cry in their story,” Mansfield says. “I cried just because of the tenderness of what they shared.”
His own dramatic conversion was what allowed Mansfield to convey God’s grace through the stories in the book. It only took Mansfield six months after being hired at Capitol Records to become manager of the Beatles’ Apple Records. Not long afterwards, he became the director of Capitol Records, then vice president of MGM Records and finally president at Barnaby/CBS Records. “I had a No. 1 record on the charts, I was hanging out with all the rich and famous people, I was married to a Hollywood star, life couldn’t have been more exciting,” he says.
And yet he remembers an empty feeling that haunted him at times. Soon his life began to fall apart. While he was lost in “sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll” to ease his inner pain, God sent friends into Mansfield’s life who pointed him to Jesus.
Mansfield now works to help others experience the same transformation as he spreads the gospel through his traveling ministry. His hope is that the stories in his book will show the world that no one is beyond saving, “no matter how messed up their lives are.”