NASHVILLE, Tenn.–GRAMMY®-nominated, classically trained tenor David Phelps topped the sales charts this week with his all-new recording, Freedom (Gaither Music Group). Produced by Phelps and mentor/friend/gospel music legend Bill Gaither, the new release landed at #1 on the Southern Gospel Albums chart and at #10 on the CCM Albums chart, according to Nielsen SoundScan. In addition, Phelps’ previous release, Classic (Gaither Music Group), hit the #2 spot on the Southern Gospel Albums chart, while the Classic DVD topped the Christian Music Video chart and came in at #3 on the Billboard Top Music Video chart.
Phelps, who wrote or co-wrote nine songs on the new release, describes, “…This is a snapshot of where I am on my journey…it’s real life and faith — not the absence of trouble, just the ability to be led through it by our loving Savior. For me, these songs are like the rings of a tree telling its story: some years were plentiful; some were dry; in the end they speak of life.”
Those songs of life underscore Phelps’ ability to bring music to life and showcase his award-winning, three-octave range. The recording includes gospel standards such as “Ain’t No Grave,” “When the Saints Go Marching In” and a signature recording of “We Shall Behold Him”; yet one of the songs taking audiences by storm is the Phelps-penned “Ghost Town (Freedom).”
“The central theme of Freedom emanates from the title song, ‘Ghost Town (Freedom),’” explains Phelps. “I began writing the era-based lyric in the verses and was amazed how the metaphor of Christ painted itself…it’s about why He did what He did: freedom!’ So much of our spiritual lives (and the songs on this project) are spent searching for or trying to cling to freedom.”
The recording features Phelps’ anticipated powerhouse vocals along with musicianship from a who’s who of Nashville talents including Gordon Mote, Chris Rodriguez, Danny O’Lannerghty, Greg Ritchie, Sam Levine, David Davidson and Jack Jezzro among others. The orchestrations were penned by Phelps, Mote, Steve Mauldin and Kristin Wilkinson. The rest of the Gaither Vocal Band — Bill Gaither, Wes Hampton, Adam Crabb and Todd Suttles – were on hand to perform some of the project’s background vocals.
Freedom is distributed through Capitol Christian Distribution and is available throughout general market stores and the Christian marketplace in addition to online retailers including iTunes, Amazon and www.gaither.com.