Aaron Swain's blog about Southern Gospel Music, News, and other items of interest in the SG world.

Archive for October, 2007

Pray For "Big" Jim Hamill

October 30, 2007 By: Aaron Category: Big Jim Hamill, Prayer Requests, SG Artists, SG History, SG Industry News, SG Music, The Kingsmen

It may not be long before we lose another hero.

Jim Hamill, MC for The Kingsmen in their glory days, is currently bedridden in a nursing home. He has fallen 100 pounds, and it doesn’t look good for the Master MC. Please keep him in your prayers.

Upcoming Review: EHSSQ and Gaither Vocal Band-Together

October 28, 2007 By: Aaron Category: Ernie Haase and Signature Sound, Gaither Vocal Band, SG Artists, SG Music

Be looking for my upcoming review of the DVD Ernie Haase & Signature Sound and the Gaither Vocal Band: Together.

Classic Imperials New Video

October 27, 2007 By: Aaron Category: Classic Imperials, SG Artists, SG Music


A very professionally done music video by the Classic Imperials, consisting of former Imperials alumni Armond Morales at bass and David Will at baritone. Filling the tenor spot is former Old Time Gospel Hour Quartet tenor Robbie Hiner. The lead is Rick Evans.

Not “classic” in the sense of classic SG, but as an admin on David Bruce Murray’s blog pointed out, this is “classic” in the respect of the music that the Imperials were making in the 80’s and 90’s.

I like it. I really do… Can’t wait to get my hands on the new project, to be released in April.

Tony Jarman Leaves Old Time Gospel Hour Quartet

October 20, 2007 By: Aaron Category: Old Time Gospel Hour Quartet, SG Artists, SG Industry News, SG Music, Tony Jarman

I’m shocked….

From a rather short email update from the group:

“Date: October 19, 2007
Tony Jarman leaves the Old Time Gospel Hour Quartet. A solo tour is slated to beginin 2008.”

I can only hope that further information will be released…
Tony’s a great tenor, but hasn’t he tried a solo career before? Ah well.

Best of luck to both parties involved…

Naomi & The Segos To Record Farewell Project

October 13, 2007 By: Aaron Category: Naomi and The Segos, SG Artists, SG History, SG Industry News, SG Music

And yet another legendary, mainstay group retires…

According to the Singing News website, the group has signed with Vine Records to record this project. Producer Wayne Haun says, “This is a very special project to me. I grew up listening to Naomi and the Segos, and I know what a priceless treasure they are to the Southern Gospel music industry. I am honored to be a part of their final release as a group.”

The project is slated for a January 2008 release, and I definitely plan on getting a copy.

Roger Bennett Inducted Into Hall Of Fame

October 11, 2007 By: Aaron Category: SG Artists, SG History, SG Industry News, SG Music

Roger Bennett was inducted into the Hall Of Fame today. My hat goes off to the late, great piano player that did so much for Southern Gospel Music.

Scott Allen Joins Mercy’s Mark

October 08, 2007 By: Aaron Category: Garry Jones, Mercy's Mark, NQC, SG Artists, SG Industry News, SG Music

Today is a good day for Mercy’s Mark and SG.

It was announced that Garry Jones has hired Scott Allen to take the lead position for Mercy’s Mark. I must say that I’m very happy with this decision. His first week with them as a fill-in was at NQC this year, and I was in the front row to witness the now-famed moment when he absolutely blew the top off of “I Bowed On My Knees And Cried Holy”. Right then and there, I said to myself, “Lord, give Garry the good judgement to hire this guy.” Looks like the Lord answered that request!

Looking forward to seeing and hearing great things from the group in the future!

Pray for Valor

October 05, 2007 By: Aaron Category: Prayer Requests, SG Artists, Valor

I was looking on a message board earlier, and happened to run across a post about the trio Valor. Can’t get into all the details, all I can say is some very unfortunate things are happening and the group as we know it is no more. Rest assured, as far as I know, nobody is mad at anybody and nothing un-Christlike has happened.

Please keep these guys in your prayers… If I read anything else that you can be in prayer about as far as this situation and it won’t spread gossip, I will post more

God bless you, Valor.

CD Review: A Little Christmas by Legacy Five

October 05, 2007 By: Aaron Category: CD Reviews, Legacy Five, SG Artists, SG Music

Buy Here

Well, I was planning to not review this album until December, but I saw it advertised on the Singing News site, and it’s such a good project, that I’m just gonna do it now!

This album is Legacy Five’s latest Daywind Records release, which released right alongside the self-produced Know So Salvation album, the review of which is here. This project is chock-full of old Christmas standards and some new songs. Let’s get started, shall we?

1. We Need A Little Christmas
The album starts off with the one of the few Christmas songs that get on my nerves to no end. However, these guys make it bearable. They’re joined near the end by the “Little Legacies” (i.e. their kids).

2. The First Noel
Frank Seamans takes the solo on this old hymn, accompanied by some saxophone playing that reminds me of a Kenny G album. Good, mellow rendition driven by Frank’s tenor voice. The others join him near the end, and I must say that I love the ending! Frank’s tenor gives the group the most mature sound they’ve ever had, and this song is a strong reminder.

3. Festival Of Carols
This track is a medley of Christmas tunes, featuring “Joy To The World”, “O Come All Ye Faithful”, “Silent Night”, and “Hark The Herald Angels Sing”. I saw them do this one at NQC, and the performance both live and in the studio is stellar. The orchestration on this track sounds strangely similar to that of an old Disney movie.

4. Christmas With A Capital “C”
This track is written by John Statema, whom I’ve never heard of. This song sounds sort of like a Rodney Griffin song, so if this guy is new to the field, be on the lookout for some hits! The Legacy Five online store’s description says this song is “churchy”. So is it? Um… nah. It’s a fast, jazzy horn driven track, with some nice piano licks by “new guy” Tim Parton. It drives home the message that “It’s called Christmas with a Capital ‘C’!”

5. A Little Peace On Earth
This new song features a surprise soloist: Tim Parton. Legacy Five managed to find someone that can do what Roger did: both play and sing! Parton has a smooth, baritone voice that fits this song well. I can definitely see him being featured on future L5 projects, and I wouldn’t mind it at all.

6. Winter Memories
Honestly, the first time I heard this song, it got on my nerves. The “I like”s just kept happening over and over. But after I listened to the song a couple more times, it grew on me.

7. Angels From The Realms Of Glory
This song starts out slow, and features some scripture reading by lead singer Scott Fowler. The guys then come in and sing in a style that reminds me of something I’d hear in a cathedral. It then speeds up, but only slightly, giving a stellar performance

8. Do You Hear What I Hear?
This features a solo from bass singer Glenn Dustin, and this song absolutely blows me away. This is the smoothest delivery I’ve ever heard from Glenn, and I hope this will echo in future projects!

9. Piano Christmas Medley
This song showcases piano player Tim Parton, and he does a great job. The only thing bothering me, though, is why didn’t they do this with Roger Bennett?

10. Grandma’s House For Christmas
This song features baritone Scott Howard, and as I said in my last review, I love how they always give him songs that fit him to a T. It has the feel of a Statler Brothers tune, and that’s just fine with me!

11. Welcome To Our World
This track features Scott Fowler, and it hasn’t really grown on me yet. Too slow, maybe? I dunno. I guess this would be one of those “it’s better live” songs.

12. O Holy Night
This final track is six minutes and eleven seconds long. It starts out with a piano solo by Tim Parton backed by some heavy orchestration, and then the guys come in and absolutely blow the top off of it. I can’t say enough about this song. A great choice to close out the project.

Very nicely produced and arranged project. Merry Christmas (early).

Booth Brothers In The Studio

October 04, 2007 By: Aaron Category: Booth Brothers, SG Artists, SG Industry News, SG Music

From sogospelnews.com:

Nashville, TN (October 4, 2007) – Gospel music’s Favorite Group of the Year, the Booth Brothers, are in Nashville, TN, and in the studios recording their first project with Daywind Records. The untitled release is slated for March 2008.

The record is being produced by producer and songwriter, Barry Weeks. Weeks was also the producer for the Booth Brothers’ hit record, The Blind Man Saw It All, as well as the new Brian Free and Assurance release, Real Faith.

The Booth Brothers, one of the most accomplished groups in Gospel music, signed an exclusive recording agreement with Daywind Records early this summer. The Booth Brothers consists of Ronnie Booth, Michael Booth, and Jim Brady. They are known for their high energy and humorous, yet touching concerts.

Receiving a standing ovation from artists and fans alike, the Booth Brothers, recently received the most prestigious award at the Singing News Fan Awards in Louisville, KY during the National Quartet Convention, the award for Group of the Year. The Booth Brothers were the first trio to ever win this award.

Daywind Records is based in Hendersonville, TN, and is distributed worldwide through New Day Christian Distribution, Word and WEA. In addition to the Booth Brothers, Daywind is home to great artists such as Legacy Five, Greater Vision, Brian Free and Assurance, and others.

For more information on the Booth Brothers, visit http://www.boothbrothers.com or log on to http://www.daywindrecords.com

I must say I’m excited! The team of the Booth Brothers and Barry Weeks has never been a bad match-up before, and I can’t wait for this music to reach my ears.