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

Winners of the 2010 Singing News Fan Awards

September 30, 2010 By: Aaron Category: SG Artists, SG Industry News, SG Music, Singing News Fan Awards

  • Favorite Musician- Jeff Stice- Triumphant Quartet
  • Horizon Individual- Morgan Easter- Jeff and Sheri Easter
  • Tenor- Michael Booth- The Booth Brothers
  • Soprano- Kim Hopper- The Hoppers- Kim’s daughter Karlye accepted the award and dedicated it to Tony Greene, making for one of the night’s more emotional moments.
  • Young Artist- Brooklyn Collingsworth
  • Baritone- Jim Brady- Booth Brothers
  • Horizon Group- Soul’d Out Quartet
  • Favorite Male Artist- Ivan Parker
  • Favorite Bass Singer- Eric Bennett- Triumphant Quartet
  • Favorite Lead Singer- Ronnie Booth
  • Favorite Alto- Libbi Stuffle
  • Favorite Mixed Group- The Hoppers
  • Favorite Female Singer- Kim Hopper
  • Favorite Male Quartet- Triumphant Quartet
  • Marvin Norcross/Templeton Award- Primitive Quartet
  • Favorite Soloist-Ivan Parker
  • Favorite Trio- The Booth Brothers- also dedicated to The Greenes.
  • Songwriter Of The Year- Rodney Griffin
  • Favorite Album- Jubilee- Legacy Five, Greater Vision,The Booth Brothers
  • Favorite Song- If You Knew Him- The Perrys
  • Favorite Artist- The Booth Brothers

There’s really nothing to complain about in this year’s awards; everyone who won something deserved the win, IMHO. Here’s hoping that we see the Awards back at NQC next year, though.

Tony Greene Passes Away

September 28, 2010 By: Aaron Category: SG Artists, SG Industry News, SG Music, The Greenes, Uncategorized

After several early reports of his passing that were in error earlier today (he was taken off the ventilator but breathing on his own), Tony Greene passed away today at 4:25 PM. From the Singing News:

Anthony Elden Greene, known to most Southern Gospel music fans as “Tony,” passed away today, September 28th just before 4:30pm Eastern Time at the age of 41. Tony had been in Carolina Medical Center in Charlotte, N.C., since September 21 due to several health complications.

Tony is survived by wife, TaRanda, and their children, Isabella (age 6) and Jocelyn (age 2). He is also survived by his brother Tim, sister Kim Greene Hopper, and his mother, Carolyn Greene, and several nieces.

The son of (the late) Everette and Carolyn Greene, Tony was born in Boone, N.C., on October 17, 1968, the youngest of three children. By the early 1980s, Tony and his siblings were singing Southern Gospel music professionally as The Greenes, garnering several No. 1 songs and appearing on the nation’s leading concerts.

In addition to being noted as a gifted lead vocalist, Tony has also been included in the list of leading concert promoters of Southern Gospel music. Throughout the years, Tony’s promotions encompassed dozens of states, while providing Christian music in not only churches and auditoriums, but also aboard cruises, bus tours and more. He was also a key factor of the success of the long-running Gospel Singing Jubilee multi-day concert held in Boone, N.C., for almost 30 years.

Tony married the former TaRanda Kiser on February 13, 2001. Together, they continued the ministry of the Greenes, while also being involved in several other ventures that include work with Abraham Productions (concert promotions featuring the Singing In The Sun in Myrtle Beach, S.C., the Gatlinburg Gathering in Gatlinburg, Tenn., and other locations), and the Good Shepherd Funeral Home in Indian Trail, North Carolina.

On August 25, 2009, Tony underwent a successful kidney transplant, with TaRanda providing the donor kidney. He returned to traveling within a month and though he encountered some minor health difficulties, he continued with the Greenes until additional health issues forced his hospitalization on September 21, 2010.

Funeral arrangements are pending.

In tribute to Tony, here are the Greenes at NQC 2009 singing one of their best-known songs, “Hold On,” soon after Tony’s kidney transplant. Please pray for the family during this difficult time.


CD Review: TaRanda Greene – In The Sanctuary

May 29, 2010 By: Aaron Category: CD Reviews, SG Artists, SG Music, TaRanda Greene

Rating: 4 stars

Producer: Brad Hudson
Label: Independent release
Website: http://www.thegreenesgospel.com/

Song list: “Sing,” “Highway To Heaven,” “I Know Too Much About Him,” “You Were There,” “Wait On The Lord,” “I Am Redeemed,” “I Have Come By The Way Of The Cross,” “Got Me Some Joy/I Didn’t Think It Could Be,” “Hosanna,” “Come To Me,” and “Oh Holy Night.”

When most Southern Gospel fans hear the name “The Greenes,” there’s usually one of two faces and voices that instantly come to mind: Tony Greene, or his wife, TaRanda. Although TaRanda has not been in the group for it’s entire history, she has made quite a name for herself with her vocal range and ability. Her latest solo project, In The Sanctuary, really showcases that voice.

The first two tracks, “Sing” and “Highway To Heaven,” lean toward to the jazzy, upbeat side of the musical spectrum. TaRanda’s soulful vocals help to drive the songs, and get this project off to a great start. Things then slow down for the third track, “I Know Too Much About Him.” Color me peculiar, but this song hasn’t grown on me yet. It is indeed a pretty song, and the message is made very clear, but the melody seems disjointed and crammed, as if there were too many lyrics written for the song.

An acoustic guitar opens the next ballad, “You Were There,” which I felt was a better musical choice than the previous track. Greene’s vocals are soft and understated for most of the song, until the powerful ending in which she kicks it up a notch. The tempo picks back up for “Wait On The Lord,” and with it returns the soulful sound that the first two tracks featured. The first single from the recording, “I Am Redeemed,” has a black gospel feel to it, complete with a choir. Tony Greene takes the spot as guest vocalist here. The next three tracks alternate from slow, to upbeat, to low tempo again, the highlight being the cover of the Praise & Worship song “Hosanna.” “Come To Me” features a duet between TaRanda and her young daughter, Isabella, at the end. The project closes with Greene’s iconic arrangement of “Oh Holy Night.”

Bottom line: Fans of TaRanda’s voice will find plenty to love with this project, as it is a great showcase of what she can do vocally.