Saturday, August 30, 2014

Mixing the Old and the New - Day 8 Recap of Silver Dollar City's Southern Gospel Picnic

Friday was a mixture of the old and the new at Silver Dollar City. The groups are park were very diverse from a traditional male quartet who had been around for 80 plus yeas to three red-headed young girls just getting their starts to family groups who are making a name for themselves.

My day started at Red Gold Hall with Red Roots. This was my first time seeing these girls sing live. I was extremely impressed with the level of talent these girls have. I’d heard them sing before, but I never realized what talent they have as musicians. I think I counted eight different instruments on stage, and they played them all!!

I was actually surprised that I was more familiar with some of their songs than I thought I would be. They started with “Christian Country Girl,” which I had heard a lot on radio. I also had heard “Seven Days,” but my favorite of what I heard them sing was “Grow.”

I was impressed not only by these girls’ musical abilities but also by what they said in between songs. You can tell these girls are passionate about sharing Christ through music and living for Him. It was also fun to see a lot of young girls in the audience who you can tell are big fans. These girls are definitely making impressions on young fans.

From there, I went to see the Sneed Family at the Riverfront Playhouse. I got the chance to interview them last year, but this was my first time seeing them live. They had a full live band with keys, drums and two guitars. They started the set with “Sail on Over to the Other Side.” Then Jeff, the patriarch of the family, was featured on “I’ve Got More to Go to Heaven For.”

They sang other familiar songs like “If You’ll Move Over, I’ll Help You Carry Your Load” and “I Wouldn’t Take Nothing for My Journey Now.” However, the highlight of the set was Amanda singing “Hallelujah Square.” She, Caleb and Seth repeated the chorus a cappella. Amazing job!!! They ended the show with “He Is Leading the Way.”

My afternoon was spent with Karen Peck and New River catching a couple of the group’s shows. Kari, Karen’s daughter, joined them on stage singing for the last show. They repeated a few songs, but pretty much had completely different sets each time. They repeated “Revival” and of course “Four Days Late,” but I didn’t mind one bit. That song never gets old. I don’t care how many times I hear it, it still speaks to me and you can see how it still ministers to others. During the second show, Karen sang “Amazing Grace” a cappella and then went into “Four Days Late!” Absolutely beautiful!!

It was good to hear other songs from their most recent project like “Everybody’s Going Through Something,” “Finish Well” and “You Did It Anyway.” “Finish Well” is becoming one of their most powerful and most requested songs. Jeff gave a heartfelt testimony during the last show of how his pastor died suddenly just days before they went into the studio to record that song. They left straight from the funeral to the recording studio. He said it was the last thing on his mind, but as soon as Karen started singing that song the Spirit was in the room and he had the peace that passes all understanding.

Karen made sure to close each show with prayer, praying for those who were hurting and those who might not know Christ. I absolutely love the heart of this group!!

The night concert featured Aaron and Amanda Crabb, the Blackwood Brothers and the Bowling Family. This was my first time seeing Aaron and Amanda live. It is so sweet seeing this couple minister together as a duo. They sang several classics like “Going Home,” “He Looked Beyond My Fault” and “Hold to God’s Unchanging Hand.” I also loved that they chose to sing a few from their latest project “If I’m Guilty” and “Take Him to the Place.” Amanda talked about the last one being her testimony song and how she had written it from John 11 when Jesus said to take Him to the place where Lazarus lay. Incredible song!!

The Blackwood Brothers took the stage next. They started with “Feelin’ Mighty Fine” and then went into “Jesus Is Coming Soon.” A highlight of their set was Butch Owens featured on “I’ve Got to Walk That Lonesome Road.” Michael Helwig also sang “It Is No Secret,” another great moment!

They had the entire audience on its feet standing and clapping along with “I Wanna Be More Like Jesus.” They repeated the chorus a few times. Normally groups would end with a song like that, but they chose to end on a hymn “Blessed Assurance.”

The Bowling Family closed the night. They started with “I’ll Be Alright As Soon as I Touch Calvary.” Then they sang two songs from Safe After the Storm, “Come Along Let’s Fly” and “I Know Enough.”

They brought back an older song that Hope sang when she was younger, “Jesus Pilots My Ship.” If you thought she was incredible on this song before, you should hear her sing it now!! She, Troy and Mike repeated the chorus a cappella! It was amazing!! They also brought up their younger daughters to sing “My Country Tis Of Thee” in honor of the veterans. Their harmonies at such a young age are incredible.

Kelly was featured on the Crabb Family song “Don’t You Wanna Go.” Aaron was in the sound booth and ran down to join them on stage! It’s always good to see a mini Crabb reunion!! Mike made the comment after the song that he thought he would be cooked after being under those hot lights, but Kelly said it was hard to cook a Crabb! Haha!

Kelly gave the testimony of the bus accident to set up “Your Cries Have Awoken the Master.” This is always such a powerful song and a highlight of the night! However, I think my favorite song from last night was “I Still Glory in the Cross!” After that song, they ended on the barnburner “I Never Shall Forget the Day” bringing up Duane Garren to sing the last part with them!

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