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

The Perrys Hire David Ragan

June 21, 2013 By: Aaron Category: SG Artists, SG Industry News, SG Music, The Perrys

When Joseph Habedank stepped down from The Perrys, it opened wide the door to speculation as to who would take his place. Habedank’s lead singing work was an integral part of the group’s sound for the past few years, giving them an instantly recognizable sound if you were to hear them on a random radio station. When David Ragan, recently departed Inspirations lead singer, came up to fill-in, people started to wonder if he was the answer. As Youtube videos cropped up, the buzz was generally favorable toward his hire, but with a newborn baby, it was up in the air. That question was answered in the early hours of this morning:

The Perrys are pleased to announce the addition of David Ragan as their new lead singer. David, who has been filling in the past two weeks, will be stepping into the role full-time. David most recently sang with the Inspirations, and he brings to this award-winning mixed group not only a great lead voice, but also touring experience. He is “road ready,” which was an important hiring consideration, while Tracy continues to recover from a stroke suffered in January and Libbi works select dates while tending to Tracy’s care.

David is thrilled to be a part of the Perrys. He admits, “Whenever the Inspirations would sing with the Perrys, I always enjoyed it. I’ve been a fan of theirs for along time. With the lead singers they’ve had through the years, I know I have big shoes to fill, and I’m thankful for that opportunity. I thought the biggest change for me would be going from a male group to one that’s co-ed, but Bryan, Leah and I gelled almost immediately. They’re both laid back and very easy to travel with. Bryan is such a great singer with one of the best hearts. And Libbi is incredible. I’m not sure I could put into words the grace and determination she has. I admire her and Tracy both very much, and respect this ministry they’ve built. I’m very happy to be a part of this fine team.”

Libbi says, “On behalf of the Perrys, Tracy and I are thrilled to welcome David, his wife Michelle, and son Bradley to our FAMILY!” We have known David for several years and have always admired his love for God, the music and the fans. We are excited to start a new chapter with David.”

For more information on the Perrys, visit their website at www.perrysministries.com.
To schedule the Perrys, visit www.harperagency.comhttp://www.perrysministries.com/.

Here’s the video that sealed the deal for me in supporting David’s hire to The Perrys:

CD Review: The Inspirations – The Son Came Down

November 23, 2009 By: Aaron Category: CD Reviews, SG Artists, SG Music, The Inspirations

Rating: 5 stars

Producers: Martin Cook & Jeff Collins
Label: Horizon Records
Website: www.theinspirations.com
*This project was purchased directly from the artist. This detail had no bearing on the final rating.

Buy This Project

The Inspirations are a group that has carved a unique niche and developed a consistent sound in its history in Southern Gospel music. (Think the Dixie Echoes.) Before this project was recorded, the group got both a new lead singer, David Ragan, and a new tenor, Dallas Rogers. The latter came after long-time tenor, Archie Watkins, resigned from the group to take on a less hectic solo schedule. The obvious question here is this: how does two such changes impact the sound of the group?

The answer is, the group still sounds the same, but younger.

In hiring Dallas Rogers, the group hired a tenor that sounds like Archie Watkins when he first started with the group. The comparison is arguably strongest in the re-cut of a song that originally featured Watkins, “Thank God I Made It.” Roger’s vocal style and timbre is eerily similar to the elder tenor’s, and that fact helps keep longtime fans of the group happy.

As far as the project goes, the group has found a new spring in their step with their past few projects. They’ve picked songs that fit the group well and are stellar selections. It really started with “I Have Not Forgotten,” then “The Rose,” and now the title track for this project. I have a feeling that will be the next big hit for the group.

The project as a whole lets every vocalist get the spotlight. Dallas Rogers gets a big feature on a new song called “Dealing With Gold,” popping a few higher-end notes I wasn’t expecting. Baritone Melton Campbell sings a Joseph Habedank offering called “Stone’s Throw Away” that seemed tailored for his voice. Bass singer Mike Holcomb shines on both “Heaven Knows Where I’ve Been” and his solo verse on “The Son Came Down.” New lead singer David Ragan gets a feature on the latter as well, and he injects some young blood into the group just like Rogers.

Bottom line: Like I stated earlier, The Inspirations are steadily improving the quality of the material they put out. This project is a great way to introduce the new lineup to the world and show them what they are capable of.