Thanks for joining us for another SGN Scoops Wacky Wednesday! Today’s question for our fearless panel of artists: “What is the one album every Gospel fan should have in their collection?” As you might expect, some of the answers are a little less than scientifically proven.
Nevertheless, SGN Scoops polled about 18 or so artists about various things and tabulated their answers. We have used this (not so great) scientific process to create today’s Wacky Wednesday Top Ten. Our panel of expert artists gave us the following answers.
The artists whose albums should be owned by every Southern Gospel aficionado are the incomparable Cathedrals.
All of the Booth Brothers were united in their response, giving three votes to Live in Atlanta by the Cathedrals. Donna King says, “Anything by the Hinsons or Cathedrals (can’t pick one!)” And no, Donna you didn’t fail that one! Michaela Brown also voted for any of the Cathedral albums.
The Singing Americans, a quartet ahead of its time, and the 24-karat Gold City were tied for second place. Gary Casto, Scotty Inman and Greg Bentley chose Black and White by the Singing Americans. Chris Jenkins and Joseph Habedank put their votes in for Pillars of Faith by Gold City. David Sutton’s choice is Gold City’s Double Take.
In third place was Bill Gaither, with two of his groups each earning a vote. Phil Collingsworth Sr. said, “HYMN CLASSICS – THE BILL GAITHER TRIO (1990 – only Gaither Trio Album produced by Lari Goss – last Trio Album released.)”
Karen Peck’s choice was, “Anything from Gaither Vocal Band!”
Other top picks included:
Speer Family: Heritage Series. “Little is much when God is in it! The best!” – Hannah Webb
“A Triumphant one!” – Clayton Inman
Blackwood Brothers Quartet latest project. “Our new one, Forever.” – Billy Blackwood
The Talleys latest project. “This would probably be a bad time to admit that I don’t listen to much music, so I’ll say whatever the Talleys’ newest is!” – Lauren Talley Alvey
The Three Bridges’ newest album. “The latest Three Bridges album, of course!” – Shannon Smith
So now you know! There may be more than one answer that is a little suspect, but that is how we roll on the SGN Scoops Wacky Wednesday!
Thanks again to all of our participants. Be watching SGN Scoops mainpage for more Wacky Wednesdays in the weeks to come. Do you want to suggest a subject or an artist? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
For more on the artists who have subjected themselves to our poll questions, visit them at their group websites:
Chris Jenkins http://kingsmenquartet.musiccitynetworks.com/
Joseph Habedank http://www.josephhabedank.com/
Clayton Inman http://www.triumphantquartet.com/
Lauren Talley Alvey http://thetalleys.com/
Phil Collingsworth Sr. http://www.thecollingsworthfamily.com/
David Sutton http://www.triumphantquartet.com/
Greg Bentley http://crossroadslabelgroup.com/
Gary Casto http://tributequartet.com/
Billy Blackwood http://www.blackwoodbrothers.com/
Shannon Smith http://threebridgesgospel.com/
Michaela Brown http://thebrownsmusic.com/
Booth Brothers http://boothbrothers.com/
Scott Inman http://www.triumphantquartet.com/
Karen Peck http://www.karenpeckandnewriver.com/
Donna King http://www.zaneanddonnaking.com/
Hannah Webb http://rickwebbfamilymusic.com/
Tags: Bill Gaither Trio, Cathedrals, Gaither Vocal Band, gold city, hinsons, sgn scoops, Singing Americans, Speer Family
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Legendary Group Celebrates Big Week for Sometimes It Takes a Mountain and Happy Rhythm Releases
Tags: Capitol Christian Distribution, Gaither Vocal Band, Sometimes It Takes a Mountain, Southern Gospel News
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GRAMMY® Award-winning Group Introduces Companion DVD to Recent Chart-topping Sometimes It Takes a Mountain CD Release
Tags: Bill and Gloria Gaither, Gaither Vocal Band, gerald crabb, Henry Slaughter, Jeff Silvey, Michael W. Smith, Mosie Lister, Reba Rambo-McGuire and Dony McGuire, Southern Gospel News, Suzanne Jennings, Thomas A. Dorsey
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. —GRAMMY® Award-winning quintet the Gaither Vocal Band was honored on Friday with a nomination for Hymns (Gaither Music Group) for Best Roots Gospel Album, which will be awarded at the 57th GRAMMY® Awards, to be held on Sunday, February 8, 2015, at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, CA.
“I am extremely blessed to have sung with so many great artists throughout the Gaither Vocal Band’s history,” stated the group’s founder and bass singer Bill Gaither. “Now I’m doubly blessed to receive a GRAMMY® nomination for our Hymns album. For this recording to merit a nomination alongside the outstanding talent sharing the category with us is quite a privilege.”
Produced by Gaither, Ben Isaacs (The Oak Ridge Boys, The Isaacs) and David Phelps (The Martins), Hymns sheds new light on some of the most popular, timeless hymns of the church, combining the comfort of the familiar with new, moving vocal arrangements that are uniquely the Gaither Vocal Band.
The intimate collection features a signature rendition of the camp-meetin’-styled “I’ll Fly Away,” a triumphant arrangement of “Amazing Grace,” an easy-on-the-ear rendering of “Redeemed” and a vulnerable arrangement of “Pass Me Not, O Gentle Savior” that showcases the harmonies that have made the group a favorite among fans and industry representatives for decades.
The recording has been featured regularly on a TV campaign airing on PBS, Dish TV, DirecTV, AT&T Uverse, GaitherTV, TBN, RFD, FamilyNet, CTN, GMTN, Guardian, Liberty, TCT and TLN. It has been airing in Canada on Vision TV, CTS, The Miracle Channel and Hope TV.
One of the most lauded and award-winning groups in gospel music garnering five GRAMMY® nominations, two GRAMMY® Awards and 17 Gospel Music Association (GMA) Dove Awards, these Gospel Music Association Hall of Fame-honorees continue to headline one of the largest tours in the field of Christian music annually. They are currently performing on the annual Gaither Homecoming Christmas Tour. A list of tour dates can be found at www.gaither.com.
Hymns, exclusively distributed by Capitol Christian Distribution, is available throughout general market stores and the Christian marketplace in addition to online retailers including iTunes, Amazon and www.gaither.com.
Tags: 57th GRAMMY®, Ben Isaacs, Gaither Vocal Band, Southern Gospel Music, Southern Gospel News
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Tags: Adam Crabb, bill gaither, david phelps, Gaither Vocal Band, gordon mote, Resurrection, Todd Suttles, Wes Hampton
Posted in announcements | Comments Off on GAITHER VOCAL BAND Release All-new Recording
This year’s Diamond Awards will be held at Creekside Gospel Music Convention at Pigeon Forge on November 3rd through 6th. The Diamond Awards recognize the best in Southern, Country and Bluegrass Christian music and are hosted by SGNScoops digital magazine and Coastal Media Group.
Tim Lovelace returns as the lively host for the Awards show, so you know it will be blast!Be sure to get your free tickets to the 2014 Creekside Gospel Music Convention HERE
SGN Scoops would like you to meet our top-five finalists for each category of the 2014 Diamond Awards.
Today’s category is the 2014 Quartet Of The Year, defined as a traditional group with four-part harmony.
Last year, we were happy to award Ernie Haase and Signature Sound as winners of this title.
The 2014 Nominees for Quartet Of The Year are:
Gaither Vocal Band
Brian Free And Assurance
Ernie Haase and Signature Sound
The LeFevre Quartet
The Diamond Awards are swiftly approaching. Reserve your free tickets today!
Tags: 2014 Diamond Awards, brian free and assurance, Creekside Gospel Music Convention, diamond awards, ernie haase and signature sound, Gaither Vocal Band, gold city, Lefevre quaret, Tim Lovelace
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By Craig Harris
Mark Lowry doesn’t know what David Phelps sounded like as a freshman in high school.He’d guess that Phelps was already a vocal heavyweight even then. “I think he was good from the start,” Lowry said of his tenure with the Gaither Vocal Band. “I don’t really see that he’s grown in that sense musically. He had his (music) degrees way before he met us.”
However, it was at that time when Phelps had a breakthrough of sorts. “When I became a teenager, I realized I was kind of rising above other people who were doing music,” Phelps said. “There was actually a moment for me in ninth grade. I sang for our town talent show (singing Sandi Patty’s ‘Bethlehem Morning’). They gave me a standing ovation. I remember getting in the car that night and saying ‘This is what I want to do with my life.’ It grew from there. I was invited to different churches and did concerts. My parents were driving me everywhere. My dad is a CPA (certified public accountant), and my mom is a professor. From those practical professions, they began to believe and encourage me. I just had this passion and drive to do it all of the time.”
He’s still doing it all of the time, currently in his second stint as a member of the Gaither Vocal Band.“It’s been just fantastic,” Phelps said. “When I joined the Vocal Band at first, Mark was there. That was always a high point with me, singing on stage with Mark Lowry. He’s fantastic and a comedic genius. It was a learning experience. I remember sitting in Waco, Texas, and watching Michael English winning Dove Awards and saying to Lori (Phelps’ wife), ‘Boy, I would love to be up there singing with him some day.’ I was thrilled to be singing with Michael English. What an incredible, iconic talent. He has helped so many vocalists in and out of the church. People have mimicked his style for a decade. Wes (Hampton) took my place when I left the Vocal Band. What a generous guy. He’s literally like a little brother to me. He’s become a really good friend of mine. It’s been great to see his talent really grow. Then, of course, Bill (Gaither) is just a songwriter of the century. It doesn’t get a whole lot bigger than that to stand on stage and see how he communicates with people. In all, it’s a pretty amazing experience.”
Lowry was introduced to Phelps back in 1997, which led to Phelps’ eventual hire.“A guy named David Estes at Word Records called me and heard that we were looking for a tenor,” Lowry said. “David had come in to Word and sang for them and thought he might be a good fit. I was going to be passing by Word at that time. I told him to tell him to be there in 20 minutes. I thought he was good. Bill said, ‘Well, have him make a cassette tape of some of our stuff,’ like ‘The King Is Coming.’ He did. Guy (Penrod, the group’s lead singer at the time) and I went over and met David at his house and sang with him to see how that would go.”
Phelps was leaning more toward a contemporary career at the time. “I grew up in a family where our musical style was pretty eclectic, everything from ‘80’s rock to classic country and definitely gospel,” Phelps said. “I fell in love with Contemporary Christian- It was Amy Grant, Russ Taff. I had recorded an independent project that was contemporary. In all of my growing-up years, people were telling me, ‘You need to get hooked up with the Gaithers.’ I never knew how to make that happen. I just keep singing. I had moved to Nashville. We were here about six months. I was still traveling (for concerts). It was difficult as a relatively unknown artist. I was in the middle of talks with a record label to do my first national release. One of the gentlemen there said, ‘Hey, did you know that the Vocal Band is looking for a new tenor?’ Jonathan Pierce had left. I said, ‘If you could make an audition happen, I would love to have a chance at that.’ Mark Lowry was on that label too. It was Word. He came up and listened.”
Gaither added, “Mark Lowry had brought me a CD, and we were going on a cruise. We were looking for a tenor at the time. I asked Mark to tell him to go into the studio with just him and his voice. He did. We were overwhelmed.”
Phelps was not overly familiar with Southern Gospel Music at the time.“I didn’t really know what Southern Gospel was,” Phelps said. “My family used to sing four-part harmony. I knew those things. I just didn’t know the industry as a whole. I was just doing my own thing. I was just kind of who I was. I am so grateful that Southern Gospel Music has embraced me. I have fallen in love with the icons of Southern Gospel Music. It was fantastic to get to know Vestal Goodman and Jake Hess. This music has people like no other genre. I had heard of Michael English and the Vocal Band, but I had lost track of the Vocal Band a little after Michael left. I had heard the songs that had come out of Southern Gospel. Stylistically, it really is such a wide range. Southern Gospel has embraced the Gaither stuff, which has a country flair to more of a Contemporary style at times.”
Phelps joined the Vocal Band in July of 1997. “It’s truly affirming,” Phelps said. “That’s an important element to any artist’s journey. People ask me all of the time, “How do I get started in this? What is the magic pill?’ There is no magic pill. John Bisagno, who was a minister of music in Houston, gave me the best advice I ever got. I’m 6-foot-1, and my face was at his chest. He said, ‘Sing everywhere you can.’ That’s still the best advice I’ve ever been given. The people that end up doing this persevere.
Phelps continued, “You learn from it. You learn what works and what doesn’t work, how far to push your voice, what to say on stage, what not to say on stage. The most important element of that is you learn to love what you do no matter whether the crowd is there or not. It’s about creating the art of what we do in the moment and creating the joy for people. What I’ve learned over the course of my career is it’s not always about the lyric. In Southern Gospel, we have lyric that is not only theologically and doctrinally sound, but it’s also in music itself. God created music. Beauty is in and of itself something that glorifies the Lord.”
Gaither added, “Everything is timing. A lot of people ask me what it takes. You have to have talent. You have to have training. You have to have a great deal of perseverance … but sometimes, it’s just timing.”
Phelps left the Gaither Vocal Band in 2005 to pursue a solo ministry.“Before I left the Vocal Band, my goal was to define myself as an artist individually,” Phelps said. “I had actually gone to Bill and Barry (Jennings, the president of the Gaither Music Group) and said, ‘While I love being known as the tenor for the Vocal Band, I want your help in helping me define myself as an artist.’ They said, ‘Well, it’s about time you asked.’ Bill is a big part of my solo stuff. I had begun that road before I left. There were some difficult years in my solo work. To go from the first one (his self-titled project released in 2001) with ‘No More Night’ and ‘End of the Beginning,’ then, to go to Revelation, I don’t know whether it is Contemporary or whether it is Southern Gospel or if it’s just artistic. People would come to my concerts thinking they were going to get Vocal Band songs. That’s just not what I was as a solo artist. I still choose songs that fit me in both places.” Read more »
Tags: bill gaither, Christian Music, Craig Harris, david phelps, Gaither Vocal Band, gospel music, Mark Lowry, Michael English, sgn scoops magazine, Wes Hampton
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NASHVILLE, Tenn.—A New Season, the latest solo offering from leading pastor, author and recording artist Matthew Hagee, debuted at #2 on Nielsen SoundScan’s Top Southern Gospel Albums chart for the week ending March 23. The chart’s only Top 30 debut, A New Season was produced by Michael Sykes (Oak Ridge Boys, Gaither Vocal Band) and features 11 Inspirationally-focused country selections.
Released March 18 from Difference Media/Capitol Christian Distribution, A New Season features the debut single, “I Don’t Want To Get Adjusted”; the Hagee co-penned songs “This Ain’t Nothin’” and “My Nomination”; “The Day He Wore My Crown,” featuring guest contributions from Larry Stewart and David Innis of legendary country group Restless Heart; and “That’s Jesus,” which was co-written by Hagee’s father, internationally-renowned evangelist Pastor John Hagee.
Executive pastor of the 20,000-member Cornerstone Church in San Antonio, Texas, where he preaches alongside his father, Matthew Hagee is the author of Shaken, Not Shattered (Charisma House). A husband and father of four, Hagee is a member of the Dove Award-winning Southern Gospel quartet Canton Junction and also records and tours with his family’s vocal group, The Hagees.
Difference Media is a division of Cornerstone Church, founded and pastored by John Hagee. The label features some of the leading names in Gospel music, including Aaron & Amanda Crabb, Canton Junction, Matthew Hagee, Tim Duncan, The Cornerstone Sanctuary Choir, John Hagee and The Hagees. A non-denominational evangelical church, Cornerstone Church is home to John Hagee Ministries, which telecasts Pastor Hagee’s radio and television teachings throughout America and in more than 190 countries around the globe. The ministry also operates GETV, a 24/7 online television and video on-demand broadcast of sermons and original programming, as well as music videos and performances by Difference Media artists.
For further information, visit differencemedia.org, matthewhagee.com or turningpointpr.com.
Tags: Gaither Vocal Band, I Don’t Want To Get Adjusted, Matthew Hagee, oak ridge boys, Southern Gospel Music, Southern Gospel News
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When two Gaither Vocal Band vacancies came open in late 2013, Bill began a meticulous search and considered every possibility. A few weeks ago, Gaither Music announced Adam Crabb as the new lead singer, joining Bill Gaither, David Phelps and Wes Hampton. Now, at last, the search is over for our fifth member and a new era begins in the Gaither Vocal Band’s legacy!
Gaither Music is pleased to welcome our new baritone, Todd Suttles, to the Gaither Vocal Band. Todd’s deep resonant baritone voice is matched only by his wonderful character, quick sense of humor and infectious energy. He comes to us from Vanderbilt University, where he has served for 20 years as a Sports Fitness Director as well as Vanderbilt’s CampVandy Youth Programs Director, where he will continue when he is not traveling with the Gaither Vocal Band. Todd has sung with the Settles Connection and can be heard in the background vocals on numerous recordings with artists whom you know and love. He comes highly recommended by fellow artists, university faculty, and many others who have had the privilege of working with him.
“First of all, I want to thank Mark Lowry and Michael English for giving us some really wonderful years and incredible recordings that will live on in gospel music history,” Bill states. “We knew when they left, we had big shoes to fill and, as I have said before, you never truly replace anyone. You have to create something new and unique. I have been putting voices together for a long, long time and never before have we considered more possibilities or auditioned so many incredible singers than we have during the past few months. This decision came down to finding a vocal range and texture that would offer just the right balance to the current mix of voices in the group. I could not be happier with this decision. Not only do we love the rich tones in Todd’s voice, he also happens to be a wonderful human being to be around. So not only have we gained a talented individual, we have gained a new friend. And very soon, I believe you will agree. Trust me. This is going to be good!”
This energetic new line-up will set sail on the Gaither Homecoming Caribbean Cruise this coming Saturday and will be headed off to a full schedule of concert weekends throughout the spring. And we will soon announce fall tour dates as well! So stay tuned!
Tags: bill gaither, Gaither Vocal Band, Southern Gospel Music, Southern Gospel News
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‘MUSIC & MADNESS’ TO FEATURE MARK LOWRY AND THE MARTINS The Long-Awaited First Tour Together Kicks Off this SpringWritten by SGN Scoops on February 14, 2014 – 11:35 am -
(Nashville, TN) – It’s been talked about for years and is now finally coming to pass. Gospel music legends Mark Lowry and The Martins will hit the road together for the first time this spring with their Music & Madness tour.
Kicking off March 6th in Little Rock, Ark., the first leg of Music & Madness will cover 22 cities including stops in Des Moines (Iowa), Bowling Green (Ky.), Fayetteville (N.C.), Nashville and more.
“It’s a lifelong dream,” says Mark about touring with The Martins. “It’s going to be an exciting year, just getting to hear them sing every night.”
The history between Mark and sibling trio Joyce, Jonathan and Judy Martin spans more than two decades and can be traced back to a cassette tape The Martins gave him at a national convention in 1992. Mark and fellow Gaither Vocal Band-mate Michael English were so impressed, they insisted Gloria Gaither listen to an impromptu audition of the group, which they held in the women’s restroom. Gloria then told husband Bill and the rest is history as the Gaithers helped introduce The Martins to the world.
“I’m so excited about being on tour with Mark,” says Joyce, the eldest Martin. “We have for years talked about getting on the road together, but never had the opportunity, so it almost feels surreal. We’re going to just hit the road and have a good time.”
Sponsored by Feed the Children, Music & Madness will also feature renowned pianist Stan Whitmire, and according to Lowry, fans can expect a little bit of everything at the shows: “We’re going to mix it up. The Martins and I will be singing together. I’ll be kicking Jonathan out and singing with just the sisters on a couple songs. Whatever it takes to make the night a success, we’re going to do!”
Best known for his comedic storytelling and writing the Christmas classic, “Mary Did You Know?” Mark Lowry has been entertaining audiences since age 11. His life work includes a long list of recordings and DVDs reflecting a wide range of influences. In October 2013, Lowry announced his departure as the baritone of the Grammy-Award-winning Gaither Vocal Band to focus on his solo career.
Tags: Gaither Vocal Band, Mark Lowry, Music & Madness, Southern Gospel News, The Gaithers, The Martins
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