Are They Sure the Motive Wasn't 'He Makes Christian Rock'?
Even Still, Christian 'Rockers' Don't Deserve Death - Not Really

Road Rage Horror

from New York Daily News

A Christian rock musician - who once played for Pope John Paul II - was nearly beaten to death early yesterday by an off-duty airport security agent during a Brooklyn road-rage clash, cops and relatives said.

Johnny Philippidis, 27, lay in a medically induced coma last night at Lutheran Medical Center, and his mother, Jannine, was keeping vigil at his bedside.

"He was beaten and left for dead," said his stepfather, Bill Eisenhardt, 54. "It's a shame to be attacked over something as minor as a fender-bender."

The Christian rocker was attacked shortly after leaving a Manhattan studio where he had been recording a new album, his family said.

Jonathan Goody, 25, was driving from his job at Kennedy Airport when his luxury sedan and Philippidis' SUV collided at 12:40 a.m. at 65th St. and Third Ave. in Bay Ridge, police said. Both men got out of their vehicles after the wreck and allegedly exchanged heated words.

Police said the federal Transportation Security Administration agent hit Philippidis several times and then sped away.

Philippidis suffered a broken nose and fractures to his jaw and eye socket.

The coma was induced to relieve pressure on his brain.

Philippidis, who played for the Pope in Rome in 2001, was a member of the now-defunct Christian group Burlap to Cashmere.

The Brooklyn-based group, begun by Philippidis and his cousin Steven DeLopoulos, recorded an independent album in 1997 and signed with A&M Records the next year.

"His music is about living," his stepdad said, adding that the 5-foot-8 140-pounder would never have started the fight. "His hands are his livelihood. He would never attack anyone."


Blogger Cindy said...

Johnny Philippidis was an extremely talented guitarist and vocalist. Burlap to Cashmere's album, "Anybody Out There?" was a classic. This is a very sad story, and the lack of sensitivity in your subject line is appalling.

November 21, 2005 6:20 AM  
Blogger Darren said...

Is, not was. He's not dead.

But you may be right. While I'm a peculiarly sensitive person in real life, my heart bleeding at the slightest scratch and my eyes tearing over the stupidest things, I also have a very dark sense of humor, which is evident here in posts about good people dying in strange ways (the Highways to Heaven section under the Satan category in the sidebar). I went back and forth about posting this tragic story simply to make a Christian Rock joke and held on to it for a couple of days before deciding to go ahead. After all, he hadn't died. I could have been less sensitive and edited out the last three paragraphs, which are irrelevant to the headline/punchline and do nothing more than say how nice and talented a guy he is, and not included his photo (there are far more cruel humorous images I could have used). But my heart isn't black, just my humor.

Sorry if it offended you, but this blog isn't about kittens and rainbows.

November 21, 2005 11:48 AM  
Blogger Cindy said...

Darren, I do apologize for my knee-jerk reaction. I've loved Burlap to Cashmere's music for years, and I guess your headline just touched a chord. You're right though; you could've been a lot meaner, and you weren't. You did have the sensitivity to include the good words about Johnny, and I appreciate that.

November 21, 2005 12:01 PM  
Blogger Cindy said...

Oh, one more thing. Burlap to Cashmere wasn't your typical Christian rock band...their music fits more into a world/folk music genre, with strong Greek influences and amazing guitar work, and their lyrics were poetic and sometimes kind of obscure. They were more a band that happened to be Christians, than a band from out of the Christian music ghetto, if you know what I mean. It was really unique, and I was sorry when they disbanded after one really great album.

November 21, 2005 12:04 PM  
Blogger Darren said...

No apologies required - being a little offended is perfectly understandable.

And for the record: I'm not against music about God - some of my favorite songs are about God ("Why God Loves You" by PM Dawn, "The Lamb's Book of Life" by Sinead O'Connor, "My Sacrifice" by Creed, "Where the Streets Have No Name" by U2, etc.] - it's just the Christian Rock genre that I've found almost entirely unlistenable. Having been surrounded by friends who listened to it - and friends that still do (Hey Matt) - and having spent years as part of a Christian youth group, I've been exposed to my fill. Maybe Burlap rose above the thick, hook-free vanilla I've heard.

Thanks for giving Philippides his due and sending him some warm thoughts. Hopefully, he's doing better now...

November 21, 2005 3:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh I am doing better!
This is Johnny, I believe this headline is about me...
If I may I would like to say a few things. Every bone in my face was reconstructed, This guy blew a red light and hit me, I NEVER belonged to a freaky youth group, like the one that scared you .. We made a "christian" album because that is what we were feeling at the time, maybe one to many hits of acid from our party days had us searching for something more?.?.. I've toured with Sting, Played with Clapton, met the Pope, recorded for months with Foxy Brown.
Burlap was signed to A&M, we didnt know a "Christian" market existed! Our label asked if they could distribute the record there and Voila, a Gold record... We wrote the music from the heart and I was 17 when we recorded it and 12 when my cousin and I wrote it... We're Brooklyn boys, You must be a Redneck.
P.S. Let me know when you are in town. You fucking redneck.

June 02, 2007 2:59 PM  
Blogger Darren said...

Niiiiiiice. Threats of violence, profanity...typical Christian.

A] All that stuff I said in the comments about hoping you're doing better? Take it all back. Disfigurement couldn't have happened to a nicer guy.

A] Redneck? That's funny. I've been called a lot of things in my life, but "redneck" is a new one. And I wouldn't go bagging on rednecks, if I were you. If it wasn't for them, your album would never have gone gold. Although "gold" records from Christian artists tend to turn your skin green. But I digress.

C} I'm beginning to see why people are prone to attacking you. You're a jerk.

So, yes, the next time I'm in New York, I'll be sure to let you know. Because I have nothing better to do than get in line to beat the remaining crap out of you.

Christians. Can't live with them. Can't feed them to the lions fast enough. Alas.

June 04, 2007 11:37 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

P.S. It was 3 men. The smallest being 210... Hope you are big.

P.S.S. I am an x NY state lightweight kickboxing champ.

July 04, 2007 12:15 AM  
Blogger Darren said...

And you're a douchebag. Grow the fuck up.

July 05, 2007 11:23 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Theres always two sides to every story I doubt a dude would whip your ass for no reason, I knew Goody, he was a good kid.. He was an Iraqi vet who loyally fought for his country and his father died in the world trade center on 9/11.. he was not a thugg with a criminal record... and this guy is not some big dude he about 5"8 170lbs. .you just provoked the wrong guy that day pussy... and now he's doing time for it....

November 20, 2009 7:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


April 28, 2015 8:31 PM  

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