Red Roots made their Michigan debut in Dowagiac Wednesday evening.
The 20-year-old triplets from Hurley, Miss., packed Michiana Church of Christ, whose pastor, Justin Shepard, commended “these gals and their parents,” Mark and Sherry Taylor.
“They weren’t here 30 seconds and they said ’y’awl,’ ” said the balding Shepard, joking about the transition from “Red Roots” to “no roots. They do more than sing, they minister. Today, they came from Louisville, Ky.,” and were too busy trying to learn to say Cheboygan to attempt Doe-Wah-Jack.
“The name Red Roots does come from our red hair,” said Natalie, who played violin, mandolin and keyboard.
She began taking piano lessons at 9.
“More importantly, it comes from the fact that we’re rooted in the shed blood of Jesus Christ. Just to let y’awl know you aren’t crazy, we are triplets. I’m the middle child of us three girls (they have a 4-year-older brother, Mark Jr.). My way, way, older sister, Nicole, by one whole minute, she plays bass, banjo and guitar. Then our little baby sister, Nika, is our lead singer. She also plays guitar.”
The Christian country trio’s video, also called “Red Roots,” about a father and daughter hunting sassafras roots to make red tea, can be viewed on YouTube or on their Web site, www.theredroots.com, where a photo of the women with fans who came to the concert wearing the group’s T-shirts will be posted.
Nicole stays in the background the most, but delivers the most powerful testimonial introducing “Red Roots”:
“I didn’t get my true red roots until I was 15 years old,” she said. “I was supposedly doing everything — going to church, playing in a Christian band, reading my Bible, praying — but I never came to a point in my life where I really realized how wicked and evil my heart was and what a sinner I was. Nothing really clicked with me. One night at church the Holy Spirit just began to use the scripture to pierce my heart. God began to reveal to me how wicked and evil my heart was. When the invitation came, I felt so much guilt. I’m so thankful God broke down my barrier of pride that day. Pride blinded me all those years. Once I repented my sins, God took all that away.”
Shepard’s favorite tune, “God Says No,” was introduced with, “When we first started out, our band was taken advantage of. We wondered why God would let that happen to us. We wondered if it was a sign we should just quit, but we kept praying and time passed by” and eventually, “God opened some doors for us.”
“This is a God thing because they haven’t been in our church, unless they were mice in the last three weeks or a month,” Shepard said. “I love guitar picking and fiddle, violin and banjo, but when they sang ‘God Says No’ and they haven’t been here, God knew what we needed. That’s my favorite tonight because it ministered to me.”
Shepard related that a few weeks ago while he was home and his wife was at work, an elderly woman and a 13-year-old girl knocked on the door.
“They invited me to church,” he said. “I don’t know if it was the devil or what got into me, but when they said, ‘Do you go to church?’ I said, ‘Yes, I do.’ They said, ‘Do you go to church a lot?’ I still played my dumb game with them. Then I couldn’t take the dishonesty anymore” and confessed he was the Michiana Church of Christ minister.
“The 13-year-old said, ‘That doesn’t matter. Do you know Jesus?’ She’s to be commended. The last two sermons here have been about don’t ever quit. Don’t ever give up your faith. You’re 20. I see God doing great things with you and through you. Don’t ever give that up.
“I see you on the rise. Stay humble. God gives grace to the humble. And it’s never to be assumed that because someone goes to church they know Jesus. Never assume that.”
The Red Roots closed with a reprise of the “hillbilly guitar song” they performed earlier.
SGNScoops would like to thank Red Roots for a great concert and John Eby for the great concert review and picture.
Tags: christian country, Christian Country News, Red Roots
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Concert Review By
It has been almost a week since Jeff and Sheri Easter and Ryan Seaton finished up their West Coast Tour. Reflecting back on their concert in Vancouver Washington at the First Church of God it was a very unpredictable good time for everyone. What I mean by that is that when the concert was first announced people wondered how such a performance would pan out with such two different singing styles. As a volunteer ticket seller, when the sales at first were a little slow I myself began to question such a match up. But when the time got closer and the sales picked up the Southern Gospel fans came through just like they always do here in the Portland OR/ Vancouver WA area. Over 500 people were in attendance and they were wowed.
Ryan Seaton started off the first set and did a great job. His smooth vocal performance was appreciated and I then knew why there were so many young faces in the crowd which normally doesn’t happen at a SG concert. Not everyone in the Southern Gospel fan base appreciates the crooning style but the majority on that night were there in part to see and hear Mr. Ryan Seaton along with Jeff and Sheri. When Morgan, Jeff, Sheri and Madison Easter took the stage it lit up again. One can never tire of their enthusiasm and talent with country and blue grass sounds galore.
Before the concert my wife, Kathie and myself were busy helping stuff flyers, getting the food for the Meet and Greet and setting up the tables. When Brandon Beene brought Jeff and Sheri into the meet and greet room the VIP ticket holders erupted with applause and appreciation. They relished the time the Easters took to tell some personal things about their lives and of course the witticisms that Jeff always comes up with. What a guy and what a character.
After intermission Ryan again started off the second half. He also took some time for personal revelations about himself and his family. One thing about gospel groups and relating to the audience like that it is very humbling. It is nice for the ordinary person to see that just because someone has a God given talent, they are just as human as you and me. They have the same problems and trials in life that we, that are not so talented, have. Ryan then introduced Jeff and Sheri and again the stage was electrified! Sheri told of her fight with cancer and then sang a song especially for someone in the audience that had lost a family member. The song was “She Loved” one of my favorites, about how we want someone to look at us when we are gone. Morgan and Madison were able to showcase their voice talents individually at different times in the concert and it shows that the talent sure runs in the family. Ryan joined them for the last part of the concert and attempted to teach them a EHSS song and dance routine that was very entertaining. All in all I think everyone, except for the little old lady with the hearing aid and walker that complained about the sound, enjoyed the concert immensely and hope that The Easters and Ryan Seaton will not be strangers to the West Coast for too long!
Tags: Jeff Easter, Portland, ryan seaton, sheri easter, Vancouver Washington, West Coast Tour
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Concert Review By Phil Boles
Ernie Haase & Signature sound wrapped up their European Tour by playing Belfast, Northern Ireland. Ever since ”A
Tribute To The Cathedral Quartet” hit the market, I knew the resulting tour would be something special. I was not disappointed.
In total EHSS sang over thirty-five songs, which for the last night of any tour, is simply incredible. What was so clear to me during the concert was the professionalism, dedication and enthusiasm that EHSS pour into each show. I’m sure they had tired voices and bodies, but you could not have guessed it from the energy that was shown. EHSS sang for nearly and hour and a half before calling an intermission. It was just one of those nights.
A special guest appearance by Colet Selwyn was a great moment. This young fella, who just turned 17, walked to the stage and sang his heart out with a great version of “Happy Rhythm” backed by EHSS. He could also moonwalk whilst singing, it was brilliant! Check out his performance on YouTube. Colet has been to the Stamps Baxter School of Music and it certainly has only made this young bass singer better equipped for the future.
Ian Owens has stepped into the bass position with ease. I’m not going to compare Tim to Ian. Every singer has different strengths and styles. The singers have to be appreciated for what they are, and not who they “replaced”. Ian has a massive voice, very similar to Armond Morales from the Imperials. He has a fantastic tone and a great quality, plus you can hear each word that he sings! Similar to Devin, once Ian settles in, and gels even more, this line-up will be extremely capable.
Ian rattled the sub woofer on a few songs, “Happy Rhythm” and an encore performance of “Glory to God in The Highest” to name a few. Ernie featured Ian with his audition song, “I Believe”. Wow! It was such a simple, yet honest arrangement and with the great “Jordanaire” style backing vocals it was fantastic. Ian comes from a rich heritage when it comes to bass singers, His grandfather and father are bass singers. Ian also shared how we tend to glorify our problems rather than glorify our solution. A great message to take with us everyday!
Doug Anderson was very solid on the baritone part, I enjoyed his interpretations of “I Thirst, “Sinner Saved By Grace” and “Swingin’ On The Golden Gate”. The highlight though for me was hearing Doug sing, “Until We Fly Away”. This song was interlinked with a video from the “Get Away Jordan” DVD, which added another dimension to the performance. Big song and an equally big rendition from Doug. The harmony between Doug and Ernie on a few lines of “Step Into The Water” was brilliant, they have voices which blend and compliment each other very well. Doug has a solo project coming out later in the year, this will be a good one!
Devin McGlamery was really in good form on saturday night. The first time I saw Devin was nearly a year ago and it is amazing to see just what a year does, settling in, getting used to the songs and how it all works. “Changed By a Baby Boy”, “Sinner Saved by Grace” and “We Shall See Jesus” were all well sung, with plenty of variety and freshness due to his unique vocal style. Devin has a great presence as a lead singer and he truly has one of the best voices in gospel music.
“We Shall See Jesus” deserves a special mention. The clip from a “Farewell Celebration” was blended in with the live performance and it really made it one of the performances of the night. To hear Devin nail the first part, then introduce his hero, Glen Payne, was truly special. Watching Glen fill up the two huge screens at Whitewell was another experience entirely, I had goosebumps! When EHSS and the Cathedrals joined together for the big finish, well you simply have to be there to appreciate it properly.
Ernie Haase was in great form during the concert. It can’t be easy on a tenor voice to do all the emcee work, meet and greet with hundreds of people and sing the thirty plus songs that EHSS chose to do. Vocally, Ernie was strong, “Oh What a Savior” had to be one of the best renditions I have heard live. It is probably my favourite song and nothing beats it when done properly and in EHSS style. Ernie is a good reader of the crowd and really was good at picking out songs to match the mood.
“Old Fashioned Love” is also a great crowd pleaser, especially with the kazoo! ” Boundless Love” was also well received, and on a personal level I couldn’t get it out of my head for at least a day afterward! Ernie is also a pretty good Elvis tribute artist, “Can’t Help Falling In Love” was performed with the customary cape throwing finale. Great Stuff.
Ernie Haase had a great education when he was with the Cathedrals. Naturally it was his “dream job” to stand on a stage every night and sing with the Cathedrals, but to live with George and Glen on the bus and to know these pillars of Southern Gospel intimately, has led to the shaping of a desire to see the Cathedral legacy remembered.
A legacy that will continue to touch thousands, bless people and ultimately change lives. This legacy will never die, thanks to the classy and sincere way EHSS decided to honour the Cathedral Quartet and the groups who influenced the Cathedrals.
Ian, Doug, Devin and Ernie: George and Glen would have been truly proud.
Tags: Ernie Haase & Signature Sound, Phil Boles, Stamps Baxter School of Music, The Cathedral Quartet
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The article below is a review for Matthew Paul Turner’s new book release Hear No Evil. Read our interview with Turner in the march issue of SGN Scoops, coming Monday, March 1.
One of the things I learned in one of the classes for that English Ed. degree I am currently “wasting” taught me a whole lot about something I’d always known but never verbalized: When we read stories, any kind of stories, we bring to them our own stories. Some theories even say that a book isn’t truly finished until it’s read, that the Reader’s own experiences and interpretations are what comprise the ultimate conclusion to any tale.
Oh forgive me. I in fact slipped into English Teacher mode for a moment. Let me move on to the example: When I was a kid, my conservative, quietly-Pentecostal parents were Gi-Normous fans of Sandi Patty. They were hesitant about Amy Grant. And for a long time, they flat out refused to entertain the very thought of Stryper being played in their house and piercing the ears of their naïve children (the children, my older brother and I, were already sneak-watching Twisted Sister and Michael Jackson videos, but that’s another, ahem, story).
It wasn’t until we scored some kind of Interview with Stryper cassette, conducted by some old guy my parents respected, that they compromised: We could listen to Stryper. We could not hang up pictures of them.
And so, to this day, I can sing every word of “To Hell With the Devil.” And I’m actually kind of surprised my 2 and 3 year old daughters don’t know it yet.
When I picked up Matthew Paul Turner’s new memoir, Hear No Evil, the Stryper campaign of my pre-teen years (the word ‘tween’ did not exist then) was my “contribution” to the story, as was the Matthew that I know from Twitter, where he snarks and enlightens and offends as “JesusNeedsNewPR.”
Turns out, as I hypothesize on my own Twitter bio, snark and spirituality do mix. Sweetness mixes in as well, as Turner looks back on the music-fan-formative years of an Independent Baptist child, one who risked grounding from parents and teasing from school mates to adore Sandy Patti. One of the most enlightening passages of Hear No Evil, for me, was discovering that Sandi Patty was not the adult-contemporary-gospel-darling my parents’ fandom led me to believe. In fact, Turne first saw her in concert when a small group from his church executed a covert operation to get to one. What happens is that a young man who had only to that point seen a segregated, straight-laced, “fundamentalist” version of church, sees for the first time people from diverse backgrounds and styles and denominations worshipping together. It is one of the book’s most touching moments.
Turner waxes that, “Music reminded us we could trust God, even when ‘His people’ fail us.” And so is the tone of this one-story-per-chapter collection, the thread tying each together being how they all shaped Turner’s musical tastes and spiritual convictions.
Particularly captivating is the tone with which the thirty-something Turner reminisces. Obviously seasoned in experiences and words, his voice remains one of an innocent and sometimes indignant teenager. It is sometimes difficult to tell how literally he’s portraying the moments, especially the dialogue. While this is par for the course of a memoir, I couldn’t help but wonder if those waters were purposefully muddied… so that we can finish the story.
Turner’s sharp witticisms for techniques and conditions many church and Christian-music people will recognize are clever, sure to elicit some reflection and some sting. “Faith-based bi-polar disorder” is one that jumps off the page as he describes his own potential Christian music star “wanna-be” period. A favorite of mine is a description of a Christian rock band member, who was planning to chuck the whole faith thing, along with the music, but would stick it out for his expected month or two, as he was “contractually obligated to act like a Christian.” (And all God’s people say… ouch).
Turner’s musings about life at Belmont University (particularly his Calvinist rebellion and his first Bob Dylan listening experience) will bring chuckles to music-types. His memories of falling for Amy Grant (take a guess how many times he bought her secular project Lead Me On) and defending Joan Osborne’s Gen-X anthem “[What If God Was] One of Us” may bring hysterical tears.
His depiction of an interview with Amy Grant – during his time as Editor of CCM, the Billboard of contemporary Christian music – is already somewhat of a legendary tale amongst the social media-Christian-music-circle. Perhaps this is the way every journalist comes of age, defending the integrity of a story over a publisher’s personal agenda, but Turner’s admiration for his subject and earnestness in approaching her makes this particular tale stick.
Not all the recollections of funny, nor are they all cynical. Some of the people Turner lets us meet– through his pseudo-friendship with two pseudo-music-stars, a self-proclaimed rising talent desperate to play at a coffee house he managed, a small group leader ready to quit over “making God look like a slob,” and a gay man returning to church on Easter to find his song – show us the true heart of man who, like those who seeks to reach with his words, are believers who search, who fail, and who start over, clinging to the songs they know.
Hear No Evil carries the subtitle My Story of Innocence, Music, and the Holy Ghost. Even if you’ve only experienced two of the three, Turner’s subtle, sensitive, and yes – snarky, storytelling will offer you a few hours of relatable reflection and joy.
- By Kelly Capriotti Burton
Tags: books, preview, sgn scoops
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