Friday, March 29, 2013

Fun Clip Friday - It's Friday But Sunday's Coming

Happy Good Friday to everyone! I'm off to see the Talleys tonight in Monticello. If you're in the area, come to Oak Grove Assembly of God Church at 7 p.m. tonight! 

In honor of Good Friday and Easter, enjoy "It's Friday, but Sunday's coming."

Thursday, March 28, 2013

When Lyrics Speak - Easter

Easter is just as special of a time as Christmas to Christians. Without Jesus' death on the cross and the resurrection, we would not be able to have the promise of hope in Christ and eternal life with Him. There are two distinct Easter themed songs, songs about the cross and songs about the resurrection.

I love hearing and singing these themed songs to remind me of the sacrifice that was made and the omnipotence of God. For this "When Lyrics Speak," I thought I would just share two songs, one about the cross and one about the resurrection that have really ministered to me lately.

"He Didn't Just Carry the Cross, He Carried Me"

I love this song from the Hoppers' latest CD. It's a great reminder
that Jesus didn't simply carry the cross, he carried the sins of the world on his shoulder. He did it all for me, His love for me, knowing how many times I would fail Him and how much grace and mercy I would need on a daily basis. He went through the death of the worst offending criminal to bridge the gap of eternity for me!

He knew everything that it would cost, but considered it worth everything that He had to suffer. What a powerful and undeserving thought! He didn't just count the cost, but He counted me!

"He's Alive"

I love story songs. And this one does a beautiful job of telling the
story from the perspective of the people who were closest to Christ, what they might have been thinking and going through after His death. It's interesting to think about all the emotions they might have been going through in the days between his death and the resurrection.
No doubt, they must have experienced the doubts, confusion and guilty feelings. However, all of those melted after seeing Jesus again.

It's a great song of celebration and victory! He's alive, and I'm forgiven!

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Karen Peck and New River - Concert Recap

Karen Peck and New River - Jeff Hawes, Susan Peck Jackson
and Karen Peck Gooch
I always enjoy the chance to see Karen Peck and New River whenever they are close. Not only are you in for a great night of worship, but you'll find the same sweet spirits behind the product table. They are as real as they come.

Saturday night the group was in Sparkman, Ark. at Holly Springs Baptist Church. It was a nasty night in Arkansas and rained on us most of the way there and back, but it was well worth the drive.

Here's a list of what they sang:
  • "Ephesians 1"
  • "Mighty Big God"
  • "I Want to Thank You" - Karen pulled up a young girl from the church to join them toward the end. She was excellent and apparently from what was said sings several Karen Peck and New River songs at the church.
  • "Sustaining Grace" - I love this song that features Susan. Beautiful song and vocals!!
  • "Mighty High" - Karen told the story of the movie to intro the song, and they played the clip from the movie as they sang and got the entire audience involved as their "choir." This is always a fun song live.
  • "Look What the Lord Has Done" - Jeff was featured on this song and did a great job. They did a reprise at the end that had the audience clapping along.
  • "How You Walk the Miles" - I'm glad they are staging this song. It's such a great song from Karen's solo project!
  • "I Can See Clearly" - Karen came into the audience to get audience members to sing as she typically does. The song was almost over when she realized that she missed the pastor on the front row. When she put the microphone in front of him, he told her that he was a man who knew his limitations. But he sang anyway, and after she jokingly told him that he should in fact just stick to preaching! :) It was also funny that at this point in the concert you could still clearly hear the rain coming down hard outside. But Karen turned that around to make the point that the song did saying that the rain will eventually be gone. The rain only lasts for a little while before the sun comes out again and encouraged people that no matter what they were going through, the rain would end.
  • "This Is What Mercy Does" - Jeff set this song up by talking about how he had the opportunity to speak at a middle school that week. Many times when he gets invited to speak in schools it's to Christian organizations, but this time it was a general assembly for all students so he had to watch what he said. One message that he was able to share with them was that the past is the past. We have today, and we are promised tomorrow whether it's here or in glory, so we should focus on our future. He then sang the song, which is one of my favorites from Reach Out. He absolutely nailed it! Love to hear him sing this one live!!
  • "Four Days Late" - I don't care how many times I hear this song, it never gets old. And Karen is always so incredibly spot on with her vocal performance and emotion behind the song every time!! 
  • "We Shall Wear a Robe and Crown" - This is always a fun one. Karen again pulled up a young woman from the church who sang in the praise team. 
A couple of people from the church sang during intermission, including the two Karen had pulled on stage to sing. Karen talked earlier about the talent that the people in the church had and she wasn't kidding. A 12-year-old girl sang "Christian in the House" and was great! Another girl who reminded me of Leah Page who has been filling in for Libbi with the Perrys sang several and had the vocals to match Leah as well. She along with two others sang "I Will Praise Him" Isaacs-style, so incredible! I also thought it was really cool how Susan and Karen, both sitting on the front row, were the first two to stand up clapping for all the singers. They were great encouragers for the young singers.  

  • "Hold Me While I Cry"
  • "He Set Me Free"
  • "Saved"
  • "I Wanna Know How It Feels" - Love that they decided to sing this one!
  • "On the Banks of the Promised Land" - I was beginning to wonder if they were going to sing this one or not, so glad they did! Karen ended this song leading the audience singing "What a Day That Will Be."
  • "My God Will Always Be Enough" - One of my absolute favorite songs that Karen sings!!! It's another song that Karen always does so well and with such meaning behind every word. It's a song that ministers to me every time I hear it!
Karen ended the night with the invitation. Another thing I love about seeing this group is that they never fail to let the Spirit of God lead in closing the night. 

It was such a great night. I loved not only getting to hear them sing but also getting to talk to them after the concert was over. They are just precious people who take time to make everyone feel so appreciated after their concert.

Despite the outside being rainy and dreary, inside the church you could see clearly inside how God was glorified and how He was at work using Karen Peck and New River to minister and encourage. 

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Shane McConnell Joins Canton Junction

Difference Media recording artist Canton Junction announces the addition of celebrated vocalist Shane McConnell to its acclaimed lineup. Shane joins Matthew Hagee, Aaron Crabb and Tim Duncan, to round out the popular quartet. He replaces Michael Sykes as baritone.

Matthew Hagee issues this statement: “Shane is a remarkably talented and incredibly gracious individual, who greatly complements the idea that Canton Junction is where good things come together. We are extremely blessed to have him and look forward to what the future holds for Canton Junction.”

Shane has been a Nashville studio vocalist since 1998 and has performed on recordings by Garth Brooks, Wynonna, Kenny Rogers, Steve Green, Sandi Patty, Andy Griffith and Bill Gaither, among countless others. In addition, his voice has been heard on recordings for Walt Disney World and SeaWorld. Since 2006 he has been part of the Gaither Homecoming family, performing on Homecoming videos, live events and studio projects.

He said, "I’ve enjoyed all the opportunities I’ve had in the studio through the years, but now as a member of Canton Junction, I’m especially looking forward to being able to interact with live audiences. I’ve always loved quartet harmonies, but I also have a heart for praise & worship, so Canton Junction seems like a great home for me. I believe it’s going to be a fun journey!"

Canton Juncion is based at Cornerstone Church in San Antonio, Texas. Their initial album was very well done and received, so I look forward to seeing great things with this lineup in the future!

Monday, March 25, 2013

Changes for the Dixie Melody Boys

The Dixie Melody Boys announced some upcoming changes for the group on Friday. Steven Cooper will be stepping down as baritone singer. The Dixie Melody Boys posted this on Facebook Friday:

"We've had several emails and questions concerning Steven. We want to take the chance to tell you what is going on. Over the last two years Steven has been experiencing severe vocal issues. It has progressed to a point where his doctors feel that he needs to take a few years of vocal rest. Steven has been with us for five years and will continue to be a part of our team. Steven will be stepping down as baritone and assuming a new role. He will help Rayburn drive, assist with product and will play bass guitar. We are currently looking for someone who can sing but also play piano. We are planning to bring back a live band in our concerts. We ask that you pray for a healing for Steven. We also ask that you pray for guidance as we search for the right person to become part of our family."

 Steven Cooper added this:

“I want to thank everyone for their concern and understanding over the last year. It has been difficult time having to go through this as a singer. I hope that someday my voice will return and I will be able to sing again. I ask that you will keep me in your prayers as I trust God for a healing. I also want to thank Ed, Matt and Mike for their support in this change and for allowing me to remain a member of the group.”

I'm looking forward to what the future brings for this group, especially with them bringing back a live band. Praying for Steven that God will heal him and also for the future of the Dixie Melody Boys.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Fun Clip Friday - Tracy Stuffle Benefit Concert

Happy Friday to all! Hope you all have had a great week!

Tuesday night was the Tracy Stuffle Benefit concert. Joseph Habedank posted this morning on Facebook that more than $75,000 was raised. About 1,700 people were there and more than 6,300 watched online. I know many people including myself were wondering if the concert would be available to watch later online or if there would be a DVD made. While this doesn't look like a possibility anymore, thanks to SocialCam and YouTube there are several clips from the night circulating. For today's Fun Clip Friday post, here's a SocialCam by Heather Day that shows Libbi's entrance on stage and her singing with Joseph and Bryan "Through the Night." It was such an incredible performance!

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Love Is Stronger - Jason Crabb - CD Review

Jason Crabb released his sophomore solo project Love Is Stronger on March 12, 2013. Jason came off a great year last year being named as Male Vocalist of the Year and Artist of the Year at the Dove Awards. Jason has become not only one of the top artists in Southern Gospel but all of Christian music.

Jason branches outside Southern Gospel for this project, but for those who enjoy Jason's style and his first solo project will love this one.

"What the Blood Is For" - This is my favorite song from the album. It's also his first single. While stylistically it might not be typical southern gospel, the message of the cross and the gospel is undeniable. It's such a power song!

"Let Mercy Hold You" - This song has more of a pop feel, but the song has a great message that listeners should not overlook. Incredible song and incredible lyrics, definitely one of the standout songs on the album!

"Love Is Stronger" - Jason sang this at the Tracy Stuffle Benefit concert on March 19. He explained how this song reminded him of a situation he and his wife and how she was overcoming some health problems. It was such a touching moment  with him singing it for Libbi and Tracy and how much it applied to them as well. During my initial listening, this wasn't a standout song to me, and I'm not sure why because now it's been on repeat several times. However, after hearing it live in that setting and the sweet story of how it fit Jason and Shellye, it took on a whole new meaning.

"Satisfied" is raw Jason Crabb. The simple arrangement really shows off his vocals and lets the emotions and and feeling of the song come through. Beautiful song!

On "Living Life Upside Down," Jason delivers a more country performance on this song. The project is filled with mostly slower tempo songs, so this uptempo song is a nice break. "God's up to Something" is another uptempo song that stands out. To me this one sounds more Crabb Family style and one that could have been on their last album released in 2012. The same goes for "Give." With these more country songs, I wonder if one will also be released on mainstream country radio. "God's up to Something" would be my preference.

Kari Jobe teams up with Jason Crabb on "Love Wins." This duet is incredible, their voices are great together. Michael English and Joyce Martin Sanders also lend their vocals to this project on "There's Not a Crown (Without a Cross)."

Album Rating - 4.75 stars - If you are strictly Southern Gospel and a more traditional style fan, this might not be your favorite project, but don't let the style prohibit you from enjoying an amazing project that's full of the gospel message. Jason is such a dynamic vocalist. Song selection is diverse, which really adds to the project and shows what Jason can do. And he can do it all, his voice really fits all the styles represented on Love Is Stronger. It's definitely a must-buy of the year, and I suspect it will be among the top of albums released in 2013.

Song List:

1. "Give"
2. "What the Blood Is For" **
3. "Let Mercy Hold You" **
4. "Living Life Upside Down"
5. "Love Is Stronger" **
6. "Morning"
7. "There's Not a Crown (Without a Cross)
8. "God's up to Something" **
9. "Love Wins" **
10. "Near"
11. "Satisfied" **

** personal favorites

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Dixie Echoes Hire George Shelton, Jr.

The Dixie Echoes posted last night on Facebook that they have hired George Shelton, Jr. as tenor. Here's their statement:

The Dixie Echoes are pleased to announce the hiring of George Shelton, Jr. as our new tenor singer. George is one of the greatest tenor singers, and one of the nicest people you'll ever meet. We are so proud to have George and his lovely wife, Gail, as part of the Dixie Echoes family!
We are still in the audition process for the bass singer position, so If you have a demo, or a youtube clip, we would love to hear you! Email a short resume' and demo to

I was able to catch part of George with the group at Lake Gibson via the webcast, and I think this will be a great fit! Anxious to see who the group's new bass singer will be!

Tracy Stuffle Benefit Concert

Last night was such an incredible reminder of why I love southern gospel music. The Tracy Stuffle Benefit Concert was a picture of the church loving on Tracy, Libbi and their family.

I had a meeting last night so I missed the first hour of the concert. I got home just in time to see the Perrys take the stage, and Jason bring Libbi on stage. I loved hearing her sing, and she sang with such raw emotions. She gave an update on Tracy and said that doctors and nurses had told her many people who had been through what Tracy has have not made it as far as he has. She said that they are not out of the woods yet, but they are farther than they were. She is asking for prayer and fasting starting Thursday morning through Monday morning. The prayer is that they will not have put a permanent shunt in his brain. Also, prayers for complete healing and restoration of his body.

Phil Hoskins, pastor in Kingsport, Tenn., had the artists gather around Libbi to pray and anoint her. All the artists stood around her with their hands on her and the audience stood with their hands outstretched. Just watching online, I got chills watching as believers rallied around all lifting up their voices and interceding on Tracy's behalf. As the prayers died down, you could hear one voice start to sing. It was Libbi's, as she started "Tis So Sweet to Trust in Jesus." Amazing, powerful moment!

In most other genres of music, you wouldn't see artists and fans rally around a group and donate their time and resources to support and pray for them. Last night was such a beautiful picture of the ministry of southern gospel. It's all about encouraging and lifting up believers and telling others about Jesus (10 people made professions of faith at the concert).

As for the concert itself, the lineup of talent was incredible, and it lasted for more than four hours. Even after several hours, the crowd seemed to still be going strong. Joseph Habedank and Jason Crabb worked really well hosting together. For more on the concert and the artists who were there, Daniel and YGG both live blogged the event. Also, Heather Ruppe Day posted several videos on SocialCam.

The concert will be rebroadcast on XM/Sirius's enLighten Channel 18 and Dish TV Channel 6018 on Wednesday, March 20, 2013 at 6 CST, Saturday March 23 at 6:45 CST and Sunday March 24 at 8:45 PM CST. 

Monday, March 18, 2013

2013 Singing News Fan Awards Top 10

The Top 10 nominations for the Singing News Fan Awards were announced last week. In recent years, the awards have been pretty predictable, no big surprises. A number of other blogs have already covered the nominations and the differences between this year and last. While there are not usually surprises when it comes to the awards themselves, I did think that this year there were a couple of surprises in the top 10. Here are my thoughts on some of the differences:

Favorite Artist - I was a little surprised to see the Hoppers and Legacy Five fall out of the top 10, but not surprised to see the Collingsworth Family and Mark Trammell Quartet added.

Favorite Trio - Red Roots was an unexpected addition this year.

Favorite Male Singer - Mark Trammell was there in 2012 but not this year, he's definitely one of the best in the business!

Favorite Bass and Lead - I found it funny that the groups whose singers were nominated didn't really change, just the personnel.

Favorite Soprano - I was so glad to see Kelly Bowling nominated this year!!

Album - One of the biggest oversights in the nominations was the Talleys' Love Won not being on the list! It's definitely one of the best projects of 2012. Also I was surprised that Jeff and Sheri Easter's Eyes Wide Open didn't make it, it was one of my personal favorites. The same goes for Karen Peck's solo album.

New Soloist - I'll confess I haven't heard of several of these.

This doesn't really have to do with nominations, but I was a little disappointed that the Singing News got rid of the Horizon Individual category. There's now not a way to recognize individuals who have joined an established group. Some of them would fit into Young Artist but many have aged out.

What did you think? What nominations stood out to you or surprised you?

Friday, March 15, 2013

Fun Clip Friday - The Kingsmen

Happy Friday to everyone! Today's Fun Clip Friday post is a song from the Kingmen concert I attended at the beginning of March. Former tenor Johnny Parrack joined the group on stage for "Glory Road." Enjoy!

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Beyond the Ashes - Living in the Moment CD Review

This is my first CD Review of an album that has been released this year, and I think Beyond the Ashes has set the bar high with Living in the Moment.

Beyond the Ashes released Living in the Moment on March 5, 2013. To me, this album surpasses their previous release of Treasures Unseen in 2011.

The album starts with "So Amazing to Me" which has a very strong praise and worship feel to it. To me the first verse and chorus of the song is the strongest ensemble singing on the project. Anthony Facello turns out an incredible vocal on the second verse.

The second song and title track, Living in the Moment, is a pop song by Jason Mraz. Normally I'm not the biggest fan of southern gospel groups covering popular groups or secular songs, but this works really well for them. The song sounds very similar to the original, but most southern gospel fans are probably not familiar with Jason Mraz's version (I wasn't that familiar with it). The song is also a strong contrast from the previous song. It has a very catchy melody that you'll find yourself humming and singing along.

By far my favorite song on the project is "Peace in the Midst of the Storm." I put this song on repeat during my first listen through before listening to the rest of the album. Couldn't help myself! All my notes said were "Wow!" Incredible vocals, incredible lyrics! This song is a feature for Dustin Doyle.

Dustin is definitely featured more on this project. Another song that he sings that stands out to me is "Over For Good." It's a close second favorite of mine. Anthony does not have as many features on this album only on "No Sin Greater Than God's Grace" and "I Can't Do This By Myself." I really liked "No Sin Greater Than God's Grace." Normally when I think about songs about grace they are more power ballads. This uptempo number is a nice change.

Baritone Kellan Monroe is featured on "Where Gold Begins." It also has a more "pop" feel to it. I think this type of song really fits Beyond the Ashes and sets them apart from other groups. "Your Love Comes Shining Through" is another uptempo, pop-ish song.

There are two "love" songs on the project, "When Love Whispers Your Name" and "Your Love Comes Shining Through". My favorite of these two "love" songs is "When Love Whispers Your Name." It's a great ballad, I love the lyrics of this song.

Album rating - 4.75 stars - I love the song selection of the album. The album has so many standout tracks. I don't think there is a weak song on the project. The album is definitely more toward the progressive side, but it's fits with what we've heard from Beyond the Ashes before. Definitely a project that you should buy!

Song List:

1. "So Amazing to Me"
2. "Living in the Moment" **
3. "Oh the Thought that Jesus Love Me"
4. "No Sin Greater than Grace" **
5. "Peace in the Midst of the Storm" **
6. "Walking With my Eyes on Jesus"
7. "I Can't Do This by Myself"
8. "Where the Gold Begins"
9. "When Love Whispers Your Name" **
10. "Your Love Comes Shining Through"
11. "Over For Good" **

** Denotes personal favorites

Monday, March 11, 2013

Missing Group Members

I know it's rare in Southern Gospel for all members of a group not to be there. Many of them persevere on even through sickness. But when they do have to miss for an illness or family emergency and you know ahead of time, does it affect where or not you go?

I know there has been talk of promoters not booking the Perrys because of Tracy and Libbi's absence. This is meant as a general question and not specific to their situation.

I've seen several groups when not all members where there, most recently TaRanda Greene filling in for Kim Hopper. It always makes it interesting to me to see the dynamics of a group when someone is absent. So what about you? Are you less likely to go see a group if you know someone from the group won't be there? Interested to know your thoughts!

Friday, March 8, 2013

Fun Clip Friday - Legacy Five's New Band

Happy Friday to everyone! Legacy Five is the feature of today's post. They posted this video on YouTube a couple of weeks ago of their "new band." Check it out!

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Thank God for the Preacher - When Lyrics Speak

When I look back, I'm so thankful for the spiritual mentors I have had in my life. I've been blessed my some incredible people who have molded me and helped me become the person I am today. Many of them instilled God's love in me as a young child, not realizing how much I would appreciate their influences until later on.

I was blessed to be raised by Christian parents who faithfully took me to church every week. We got a new pastor when I was in elementary school who wanted to start a new program for kids. We had kids from all walks of life, some like myself were "church-goers" and some never went on Sundays. We had kids who were glad to come to get away from home for a couple of hours and be fed physically. Many came and heard about Jesus for the first time, while others were prayed for daily by their parents. It didn't matter where the child came from but as soon as they came through the door, the pastor always hugged them and made sure they knew that they were loved not only by the church but by God. He made no difference in the kids, we were all the same to him. But we all knew that he cared.

It was under this pastor's time at our church that I was saved, and he's the one who baptized me. I didn't realize then how much I would look back at my pastor during that time and see how he exuded the love of Christ. He loved people and he loved sharing Christ with people. He made no distinction of people. "Thank God for the preacher who told me of Jesus." 

Every time I hear the song "Thank God for the Preacher" he's the one who comes to mind. He not only told me of Jesus but he showed the love of Jesus in his actions with people. I'm so thankful for his example of how to love people as Christ does. I thankful for his preaching and teaching that I learned under for several years.

The chorus of the song asks the Lord to help us show others God's love and mercy. I pray that my life can be the witness that his was. I pray that I will show God's love to others the way he did, no distinction of people. I pray that I can be half the example of God's love that my pastor was to me. "Thank God for the preacher."

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

The Kingsmen, Representatives Quartet and Johnny Parrack

I started March with a night full of gospel music. The Kingsmen were in Beebe, Ark. on Friday, March 1 with the Representatives Quartet and Johnny Parrack opening for them.

Johnny Parrack started the night off. He's still got that amazing high tenor voice as he did in his days with the Kingsmen. Here's what he sang:

  • "Little Is Much" - He nailed the high part at the end!
  • "Guess Where I'm Going for Supper"
  • "There's Never Been"
  • "Movin' Up to Gloryland" - He introduced this song by saying it's not the most sacred song, but he had a lot of requests for it. When he got down to the lower notes, he told Ray Dean Reese to "eat your heart out." When he was done, Ray Dean spoke up in the back of the auditorium and said he had the duct tape ready in case he broke anything with the high notes at the end. Haha! 
  • "He Hideth My Soul" - a personal favorite

The Representatives Quartet
I was not familiar at all with the Representatives Quartet. I was impressed by the full band they had (guitars, mandolin, piano and drums). Live music, no tracks! Tracks don't really bother me because they are so common, but it does make you stop and take notice of a group that uses all live music. Also, the group had an 11-year-old drummer! The young talent in the group was really amazing. Great group and makes me proud they are from Arkansas! Here are the songs they sang (I hope I have all those titles right.):
  • "When They Ring the Bells of Heaven"
  • "One More Time"
  • "Little Mountain Church House"
  • "City of Gold"
  • "King of Eternity"
  • "He Didn't Bring"
  • "He Left It All"
  • "A Happy Song"

The Kingsmen were up next. It had been a long time since I had seen the Kingsmen live, so I'm pretty sure Ray Dean Reese is the only one who is still the same since I saw them live. Here's a breakdown of their portion of the concert:

Kingsmen - Chris Jenkins, Bob Sellers, Randy Crawford
and Ray Dean Reese
  • "Called Out"
  • "He's Everything I Need" - Personal favorite song of the Kingsmen. Not only is it a great uptempo song, but it's got an incredible message. Bob showed off his leading singing skills on this one!
  • "I've Got a Reservation"
  • "After the Sunrise"
  • "If Not for the Love of Christ" - Randy was featured on this one, beautiful song. And it's quickly becoming a favorite Kingsmen song of mine.
  • Ray Dean talked about his battle with cancer. He said that he had gone to the doctor earlier in the week, and the doctor told him that he was now in remission. He said that God is still good and He's still in the healing business. He then mentioned that the Kingsmen had the chance to visit Tracy Stuffle in the hospital on their way down to Arkansas. He encouraged the audience to keep praying for him. I love seeing the groups show their support for each other like that.
  • "Go and Tell Somebody"
  • "Loving Shepherd Gracious God" - This song had not really stood out to me until I heard it live. Beautiful song and amazing vocals! Ray Dean really shines on this one.
  • "I Can Hardly Wait"
  • "Meet Me at the Table" - Love this fun song that gets the crowd going! In fact after the song, Randy said, "Well that's just fun!"
  • Randy told about his heart surgery. He told a funny story about his wife asking him to sing to the nurses right before his surgery. He sang that song next.
  • "How Beautiful Heaven Must Be" - Great vocal performance by Randy!
  • "O What a Savior" - This song is known as a chance for tenors to shine, and shine Chris did. He has an incredibly high tenor voice. There were so many songs that really showcased this on Friday night. It's a shame Singing News got rid of the Horizon Individual Award, because he would be a strong contender!!
  • "Saints Will Rise" - Another one that's just fun! They turned it around several times and even came in the audience toward the end.
Kingsmen with Johnny Parrack

The Representatives started the second half with one song before the Kingsmen took the stage again. They called Johnny Parrack up to sing tenor with them for a couple of songs. They sang "Road to Gloryland" and "Look for Me at Jesus' Feet." I have a video I'll add later! Great to see a mini Kingsmen reunion on this two songs!
The Kingsmen sang a few more during the second half:
  • "Joy's Gonna Come in the Morning" - They prefaced it by saying they had not sung it in years. Randy was a little nervous about it looking around to see if anyone was recording it. But they pulled it off well!
  • "Old Ship of Zion" - I love that they went back and did a few "classic" numbers. Ray Dean rattled the stage with the low notes he hit! Love the blend that this group has, and this song really showed that!
  • "I Will Rise to Meet Him"
  • "He's All I Need" - Invitation song.

It was an incredible night of gospel music! The groups sang for several hours which was a great way to kick off March 2013 for me.

Monday, March 4, 2013

New Quartet Formed - Sounds of Jericho

Stacy Bragg, Stephen Sigmon, Ken Thomas, and Matt Tyler have formed a new group, Sounds of Jericho.

Both Stacy and Stephen are not strangers to southern gospel music. They were founding members of the the LeFevre Quartet. Stacy has been the bass singer for several notable groups, including The Statesmen. Stephen spent almost three years as tenor with The LeFevre Quartet and prior to that was a member of a regional quartet, based in Georgia, for over 15 years. These men have teamed up with Ken Thomas and Matt Tyler. Matt has over 18 years experience with the Peachland Quartet and Ken Thomas is a featured soloist at one of North Georgia's largest churches, Blackshear Place Baptist Church.

"We are very excited about this new venture and we fully believe that God still has plans for us in the Southern Gospel Music Industry," says Stephen Sigmon.

Find out more about this group at

Friday, March 1, 2013

Fun Clip Friday - Gaither Vocal Band

This week it was announced that Mark Lowry was returning to the Gaither Vocal Band tour after having broken his leg in early January. The injury required surgery and physical therapy, so he was off the road for several weeks. Glad that he is back on the road with them, especially since the Gaither Homecoming Tour will be in North Little Rock on April 6!!

For today's Fun Clip Friday post, here's a clip from the latest Gaither Video that features the vocal band. Hope you enjoy!!