The Williamsons

Songfest

Creekside Gospel Music Convention

Getting To Know The Diamond Award Nominees

Written by Staff on October 1, 2014 – 7:28 am -

Diamond Awards 2014

Diamond Awards 2014

The annual Diamond Awards recognize the best in Southern, Country and Bluegrass Christian music and are hosted by SGNScoops digital magazine and Coastal Media Group.

This year’s Diamond Awards will be held at Creekside Gospel Music Convention at Pigeon Forge on November 3rd through 6th.

JP Miller, Lou Hildreth, Sheri Easter and Jeff Easter at the Diamond Awards 2012

JP Miller, Lou Hildreth, Sheri Easter and Jeff Easter at the Diamond Awards 2012

This year we again welcome Channel 57 WATC Atlanta as they cover the Diamond Awards for airing on both TV and internet at a later date. We also welcome Meagan Pledger who will be doing extensive Social Media coverage for the entire Creekside event.

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 Mixed Group Of The Year, which entails a group of any number with both male and female members. Last year’s winner was The Isaacs.

2014 Diamond Award Top Five Nominees for Mixed Group Of The Year are:

Jeff and Sheri Easter

Karen Peck and New River

The Hoppers

The Collingsworth Family

The Perrys

Join us for the 2014 Diamond Awards and the entire Creekside event. For more information and for tickets, click here


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SGN Scoops at the National Quartet Convention

Written by Staff on September 25, 2014 – 3:02 pm -

Clarke Beasley

Clarke Beasley

 

 

 

 

 

Gary Casto-Tribute Quartet

Gary Casto of Tribute Quartet

Pictures by Craig Harris of SGN Scoops…one of our roving reporters on the scene at the National Quartet Convention!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Connie Hopper of The Hoppers

Connie Hopper of The Hoppers

 

Bryan Walker of The Perrys

Bryan Walker of The Perrys

 

Legacy Five

Legacy Five

Ray Dean Reese and The Kingsmen

Ray Dean Reese and The Kingsmen

 

The Whisnants

The Whisnants


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NQC ATTENDANCE INCREASES 120%

Written by Staff on September 25, 2014 – 2:12 pm -

nqc

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Return of Connie Hopper Highlights Evening Performance

hoppers nqc

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pigeon Forge, TN – The 57th annual NQC (National Quartet Convention) is in full swing at the LeConte Center in Pigeon Forge, TN. Clarke Beasley, NQC Executive Director, reports that an all-time attendance record has been set for the first-half of the week with the 11,500 seat LeConte Center sold out for Tuesday and Wednesday nights of the annual event.
A surprise appearance by Connie Hopper – who has been battling breast cancer again after being in remission for 35 years – was the highlight of Wednesday evening. The beloved singer appeared onstage as The Hoppers‘ hit song, “I’ve Come Too Far,” began to play. The crowd leapt to their feet in thunderous applause and praise to God, welcoming Mrs. Hopper back to NQC. There wasn’t a dry in the place as Connie spoke about having the ‘peace that passeth all understanding’ during this latest health scare.
The National Quartet Convention is the only event of the year where fans can see and hear their favorite artists at a single event, and then meet them and purchase their products. Music lovers can enjoy their favorite music all day and night, as music spectaculars begin each morning and continue until at least 11 PM each evening.
Although all evening concerts are sold out at this time, passes still remain for many of the afternoon events. For a complete schedyle of events,please visit www.nqconline.com.

 

 


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NQC KICKOFF CONCERT BREAKS ATTENDANCE RECORDS

Written by Staff on September 22, 2014 – 11:06 am -

nqcPigeon Forge, TN (Sept. 21, 2014) – The 57th annual NQC (National Quartet Convention) kicked off Sunday, September 21, 2014 with a record-breaking crowd at the LeConte Center in Pigeon Forge, TN. Officials report attendance numbers more than doubling previous years records. An all-star line-up of artists – the Booth Brothers, Greater Vision, the Hoppers, the Kingdom Heirs and the Mark Trammel Quartet – helped get Gospel Music’s largest annual event underway in grand style.
A full schedule of events for NQC week is available online atwww.NQConline.com.
PHOTOS COURTESY NQC – National Quartet Convention
Greater Vision

Greater Vision

Hoppers with Melissa Brady filling in for Connie Hopper

Hoppers with Melissa Brady filling in for Connie Hopper

Kingdom Heirs

Kingdom Heirs

Booth Brothers

Booth Brothers

Mark Trammell Quartet

Mark Trammell Quartet


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The Hoppers: Past, Present and Future

Written by Staff on August 26, 2014 – 12:13 pm -

DSC_6739By Craig Harris

The Hoppers are one of Gospel music’s best-loved families. They have been given awards and accolades and number-one songs for many years as audiences embraced their powerful harmonies. After 57 years, they are still going strong and pause for a moment to remember the past, live in the moment and look forward to the future during a conversation with SGN Scoops. Excitement abounds as each of the Hoppers speaks of their history, current happenings and possibilities in the years to come.

Claude and Connie Hopper headshot“I remember when we started; we’d have probably paid somebody to let us sing,” Connie Hopper laughs. “We went to a church one night and sang and got $12.73 in the offering plate.” Needless to say, much has changed since the Hoppers starting performing in 1957. They were then known as the Hopper Brothers and Connie. “In 1970, we quit our jobs and went on the road full time,” she remembers. “It was three of the brothers and me.”

Connie joined the group as the pianist and eventually married Claude Hopper. She began singing when Claude’s brother, Steve, left the group. “We have been so fortunate to support ourselves through the work God has called us to do, and none of that has been by accident, nor any of our own doings,” Claude explains. “Every day that we are blessed to travel is attributed to the support and prayers of each individual audience. We’re like a turtle sitting on a fencepost. You know he did not get there by himself.”

DSC_6895Connie wasn’t the only current group member to come on board as a musician. Claude and Connie’s son, Dean, signed on as the drummer at the age of seven. “The only thing I knew was that I wanted to play drums, and I would do anything I could to play music,” Dean points out. “I had a chance to play all these guys’ big (drum) kits – Mark Ellerbee (of the Oak Ridge Boys), Rick Goodman, Ronnie Sego and Billy Blackwood. That’s when the big bands were the big thing. Everybody had a four-piece band.”

Dean lived the dream. He vividly remembers flying home from Portland, Ore., by himself as an eight-year-old in order get back to school after the group was out on a lengthy road trip. “Dean would sit and watch Ricky Goodman and different ones play the drums,” says Connie. “He’s always been a good boy. He worked and helped his daddy on the farm, but he wanted to travel all the time. But we kept him in school.” Dean began correspondence school after ninth grade and has been on the road ever since. Dean adds, “I played drums for everybody, played on lots of records, and played on stage with everybody that would ask.” He later played the bass guitar and eventually moved into a more visible role as a vocalist when his uncle Will Hopper left the group.

DSC_7072“(Claude) really leaned on Roger Talley a lot. Roger was an incredible part of this ministry for 10 years. Roger said, ‘you need to go ahead and put Dean into that part.’ At that time, I would sing one every now and again.”

When Dean – who is seven years older than Michael – began playing the bass guitar, the door swung open for Michael. Roger Talley and Roger Fortner were also a part of the Hoppers’ band at the time.

“Coming in as a 13-year-old kid, I was fortunate that I arrived when everybody still had a band,” Michael noted. “Every weekend, we would go out, and I could stand on the side of the stage and watch people I respected. I’m thankful.” However, he admittedly didn’t have the same passion for it as quickly as Dean did.

“Michael was a different story,” Connie explaines. “Michael wanted to stay at home and ride his motorcycle and hang out with grandpa. After Dean went out on the road, that just left Michael at home. His guidance counselor called me and said, ‘Michael is smart, but he’s just not doing his schoolwork. I think that’s because you guys are gone.’ We put him in correspondence (school). He was 13 years old when he started.”

Claude and Michael Hopper

Claude and Michael Hopper

 

Michael adds, “I didn’t envision a whole lot at 13 other than my dirt bike and my grandfather. I just loved spending time with my dad’s dad. I spent a whole lot of time with him. He was my best friend. I’ve been blessed.”

Michael is now singing the bass part during the majority of most concerts. “It seems to be working,” Michael says. “They like us all up there as a family.”

The current Hopper brothers have assumed different and more extensive roles in the day-to-day responsibility of the group. “I am proud, very proud,” Claude emphasizes. “We never pushed them to be a part of this as boys. But now, seeing what they bring to the group and family as a whole, I don’t know how we ever did it without them. Both are very talented in their own right and in very different facets. Where one is weak, the other picks up the slack, and vice versa. They know how to pry the very best from Mother and I, which is a wonderful asset to me as both a co-worker and a dad. God knew what he was doing when he blessed us with them.”

Connie adds, “We never said, ‘this is what you’re going to do.’ At this point, if one of them were to say ‘this has been great, but I’m tired of this road,’ that would be fine with me. I thank God for them. They’re just great, and they’re talented.” Read more »


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SGN Scoops Radio For The Week Of July 28, 2014

Written by SGN Scoops Staff on July 29, 2014 – 8:30 am -

ascension quartet

Ascension Quartet

On this week’s edition of SGN Scoops Radio with Jonathan Edwards, we have great gospel music from the Hoppers, Adam Crabb, Wilburn and Wilburn and the Pine Ridge Boys, as well as bluegrass music from Canaan’s Crossing and the Isaacs, plus much more. Jean Grady of Gospel Music Today has a CD review of Carla Bragg. We introduce you to a group from Missouri called The Ascension Quartet. Make sure to join us for two hours of great fun on SGN Scoops Radio. The Ascension Quartet has a new CD release! www.ascensionqt.com

 

 

SGN Scoops Radio can be heard on the following stations:

WVSG Radio: wvsgradio.com, on Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 4:00pm EST.

Radiocia: www.radiocia.us on Tuesday at 10:00 am and 9:00 pm CST and Saturdays at 8:00 pm CST.

Gospel Hour Radio: www.gospelhourradio.com on Saturdays at 3:00 pm CST and re-airs on

Tuesdays and Thursdays at 3:00 pm CST.

WTGF 90.5 FM, in Pace, Florida, Saturdays and Sundays at 9:00pm EST.

WPIL 91.7 FM in Heflin, Alabama, Fridays from 10:00am -12:00pm CST.

KJSL106.7FM Fort Smith, Arkansas, Sundays at 4:00pm. and streaming on our website, kjslradio.com

WUCG 93.1FM Blairsville, Georgia at 8:00 am Sunday morning and 9:00pm Sunday night.

Cowboy Gospel Radio internet station http://www.cowboygospelnetradio.com/ 8:00 am Sunday morning

and 9:00pm Sunday night.

Contact Jonathan to bring SGN Scoops Radio to your station: jonathan@sgnscoops.com.

About Jonathan Edwards: Jonathan Edwards began his radio career on KWFC 89.1 FM in Springfield, Mo. At KWFC he worked in news, sales and was an on air personality, creating the very popular Ozark Gospel Showcase. He has been nominated for 2 Singing News Fan Awards and garnered the coveted Paul Heil Award from the 2012 Diamond Awards. He travels full time with Faith’s Journey and currently hosts the syndicated radio show SGN Scoops Radio.

For more information and free music, click on to http://www.sgnscoops.net


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LORETTA LYNN RANCH PREPARES FOR SECOND ANNUAL GOSPEL MUSIC FESTIVAL

Written by SGN Scoops Staff on June 17, 2014 – 10:19 pm -

Grammy Winner Jason Crabb Leads Two Day Event Including The Hoppers, Karen Peck & New River, Brian Free & Assurance and more at Country Legend’s Historic Ranch in Hurricane Mills, TN

MusicCityUpdate_ScreenShot20140617at41656PMNashville, TN – The Loretta Lynn Ranch is preparing to welcome Gospel music fans from allacross the country to the second annual “Loretta Lynn’s Gospel Music Festival” held at herHurricane Mills, TN ranch September 13-14, 2014. The inaugural event last year was a huge success and organizers are anticipating another wonderful weekend.

Scheduled to appear during the two-day event are Grammy winner Jason Crabb, Hall of Fame members The Hoppers, The Booth Brothers, Karen Peck & New River, Rambo-McGuire, Aaron Wilburn, Brian Free & Assurance, Singing Cookes, The Freemans, Michael Combs, Archie Watkins & Smoky Mountain Reunion, Tony Gore & Majesty andThe Sneed Family.
 
“I love Gospel music,” Loretta Lynn says. “I had a great time with all my friends here last year and I’m so happy to invite everyone back to my house for some great gospel music! Y’all come on!”
 
For those arriving early on Friday night, September 12, 2014, there will be a special bon-fire and sing-a-long beginning at 8:00 PM with special guests High Road.
Jeff Sneed, event producer, comments: “We had an amazing turnout last year – the crowd loved the event – and this year is going to be even better!” Patsy Lynn Russell, event organizer says: ” Jeff Sneed and his family have done a wonderful job doing anything that was needed – from producing the talent line up to organizing the stage, sound and light crew to promoting the event to bus groups. They’ve stepped up and really gone the extra mile to make this event a success!”
Loretta Lynn’s Ranch in Hurricane Mills, TN is the perfect destination for this amazing weekend of Gospel music. The full service RV park features primitive camping, pools, canoeing, paddle boats and more. Guests can also tour Loretta’s plantation home, the Butcher Holler Home Place, and her brand-new 18,000 square foot “Coal Miner’s Daughter” museum.
Tickets are on sale now and more information can be found online at LorettaLynn.com or by calling the ranch at 931-296-7700.

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VISALIA, CA WELCOMES GREAT WESTERN FAN FESTIVAL!

Written by SGN Scoops Staff on April 22, 2014 – 1:23 pm -

gwff(Nashville, TN) – Visalia, CA is set to welcome the Great Western Fan Festival to the Visalia Convention Center. The annual event welcomes an all-star lineup to the West Coast from May 1-3, 2014.

The weekend will be filled with great gospel music, chapel services, special matinees, a special breakfast club, comedy showcase, and more – all designed to bring the attendees up close and personal with the artists.

The Great Western Fan Festival Talent Contest, held on Saturday morning, will award a Grand Prize of a recording package to one winner. A 1st place winner will be selected in three categories – soloist, duet/trio and group.

An all-star lineup of gospel greats will perform during the weekend including The Hoppers, Triumphant Quartet, Ernie Haase & Signature Sound, Greater Vision, Legacy Five, The Martins, The Browns, Tim Lovelace, Kim Hopper, TaRanda Greene, RSV, California Melody Boys, and Liberty Quartet.

For tickets, more information and to connect with the festival, call iTickets at 1-800-965-9324 or visit the following sites:
www.FanFestivals.com
www.Facebook.com/GreatWesternFanFestival
Twitter: @GospelFanFest
Instagram: FanFestival


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James Rainey Begins New Recording Label

Written by SGN Scoops on October 31, 2013 – 12:11 pm -

Harrisburg, Illinois James Rainey Productions announced today that his company is embarking on a new chapter in their line of Declaration212 Label logoquality Gospel Music with a brand-new recording studio and label in Harrisburg, Illinois.  James is enthusiastic about the future of this studio, and the artists that currently are recording at this amazing facility.  The mission of James’s studio is to provide excellence and professionalism in recording while at the same time making the their efforts cost effective to Gospel artists.

 James has had over 25 years experience in Gospel Music as the pianist and arranger for such groups as The Singing Americans, The Trailblazers, The Hoppers and The Greenes. This new studio promises to deliver innovative recorded product from a plethora of gospel music’s developing artists.  Another aspect to his production studio is the inception of a brand new recording label: Declaration 212 Productions.  Some may ask, ” What does that mean? ”  Declaration of course is making a statement . 212 – At 211 degrees, water is just hot. At 212, it produces steam. And with steam you can power a train.  James believes that the extra degree makes all the difference. We declare that we are that one degree –  we will not stop with 211, but push to achieve that extra degree.

 Headlining the new label is Steve Hess and Southern Salvation. This trio promises to be one the greatest trios ever to hit the southern gospel market. With a name like HESS, it doesn’t get any better than that.

 Also, John Nimmo is finishing up what looks like to be the most unique Christmas CD ever. John and James have combined some of music’s greatest moments into traditional Christmas songs, giving them a total new flavor. There is even a sax solo on one of the songs from the great Phil Kenzie, who has played for the Beatles, Rod Stewart, The Eagles, the famous baker street sax solo, and much more. The drummer is Tim Horsley who has played for many of country’s greatest stars. Miss Natalie Cameron, friends with Vince Gill, is doing the background vocals.

 The label is accepting demos from new and upcoming artists.  You can contact James about this exciting new studio and label. Phone 304-421-1278   jm.rainey@yahoo.com     Facebook: james michael rainey   Website: theraineysmusic.com

 

 


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LIMITED TICKETS STILL AVAILABLE FOR ‘A NIGHT OF HONOR’ FOR CLAUDE & CONNIE HOPPER PRESENTED BY ABRAHAM PRODUCTIONS

Written by SGN Scoops Staff on October 8, 2013 – 8:50 am -

NightOfHonor2013(Nashville, Tenn.) – A limited number of tickets are still available for ‘A Night of Honor’ for Claude & Connie Hopper set for October 11, 2013 in Greensboro, NC at Crosspoint Church. The concert, presented by Abraham Productions, will feature an all-star line up set to pay tribute to Claude & Connie for their years of dedication and faithfullness to the call of God on their lives.

Set to perform during the evening are Ivan Parker, Karen Peck & New River, Talleys, Whisnants and The Hoppers.

For more information on available tickets, please CLICK HERE.

The Hoppers were formed in 1975 in Madison, NC and have grown to become ‘America’s Favorite Family of Gospel Music’ traveling the globe presenting the Gospel message for over 55 years. Showing no signs of slowing down, today the line-up consists of family members Claude & Connie, son Dean and his wife, Kim, and son Mike Hopper.

The Hoppers are members of the GMA Gospel Music Hall of Fame, SGMA Hall of Fame and have been honored with multiple Gospel music industry awards.

Their latest project, Count Me In, was released earlier this year and contains 11 songs including “I Wish We’d All Been Ready’ to which they recorded a concept video. (CLICK HERE TO WATCH THE VIDEO)

Connect with The Hoppers:
• www.TheHoppers.com
• www.Facebook.com/TheHoppersOfficial
• www.Twitter.com/HoppersMusic
• www.YouTube.com/HoppersOfficialUtube


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