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Announcing Expository Songs

I'm excited to announce the launch of Expository Songs. It highlights songs where the main idea of a passage of Scripture is also the main idea of a song. Since so many of these songs are long-forgotten, I plan to include all available links to lyrics, sheet music,...

The Power of the Cross

Let’s finish this project by placing the spotlight on what matters most. To survive and thrive in the future, Southern Gospel needs young talent. We need to encourage talented young singers who love this music, because if there’s going to be a Southern Gospel worth...

The Encouragers

Southern Gospel is filled with people who have made an incredible impact through their music. But there are quite a few people involved in this genre whose on-stage product is only a small portion of their legacy. I like to call them "The Encouragers." Neil Enloe is...

The Power of Simplicity

The Southern Gospel songwriters of the 1970s produced a decade of enduring classics that has never been matched. The decade's greatest writers, including Bill & Gloria Gaither, Rusty Goodman, Dottie Rambo, Ronny Hinson, and Squire Parsons, all hit a creative peak...

Never, No Never, No Never Forsake.

Yesterday morning at church, we were singing one of the grand old hymns of the faith. How firm a foundation, ye saints of the Lord, Is laid for your faith in His excellent Word! What more can He say than to you He hath said, You, who unto Jesus for refuge have fled?...

Southern Gospel Journal to retire in June

This has been one of the greatest blessings of my life. But “to every thing there is a season,” and this season is coming to an end: I have decided to retire Southern Gospel Journal in early June. For my entire adult life, writing a post every morning has been the...

The Grand New Hymns

Lee Black has written or co-written numerous Southern Gospel hit songs, including the #1 Brian Free & Assurance hit "I Want To Be That Man." But he doesn't only write Southern Gospel hit songs; he also writes modern hymns on the side. Here is an example:...

Creating Trends

Every good group needs great vocalists and great songs. Great groups have one more thing: They either do something nobody else does or do it better than anyone else. Many of these can be described in ten words or fewer. Four examples: Statesmen (50s/60s): Modern...

Doing the Little Things

Yesterday, I bought the new Gaither Vocal Band hymns CD at Wal-Mart. As I was checking out, the cashier, to my surprise, commented that she remembered when Larnelle Harris was with the group, and particularly enjoyed that lineup. Then she told a story. Back in the...

Look at what the Couriers did. Do that.

In the mid-1950s, Duane Nicholson (tenor), Neil Enloe (lead), Don Baldwin (baritone), Dave Kyllonen (bass), and Eddie Reece (piano) started performing together as The Couriers. Within about a decade, Baldwin and Reece had left, but Nicholson, Enloe, and Kyllonen...

When the screen goes blank

I got an blessing yesterday from a most unlikely source. The musicians at church planned to sing five songs, but forgot to tell the overhead/projection team about one of them, "In Christ Alone": (Video: The Booth Brothers singing three of the four verses in a medley.)...

First Impressions Matter

Every radio single will be someone's first exposure to that artist. It doesn't matter if it's an artist's first single or if the artist has had thirty years of hits; it will still be someone's first impression. It was 2004 when I first tuned into my local Southern...

Songs That Answer Questions

In 1976, when Bill & Gloria Gaither wrote "Songs That Answer Questions," their generation had specific questions that needed to be answered. Today, the song's theme can be applied to a new generation: This generation needs songs that answer questions, period....

Random (but Biblical) group names

It appears that, in other genres, picking rather random group names is currently considered to be cool, and has been for quite some time. What if Southern Gospel groups were to use the idea, but use Random Biblical names? In all seriousness, this will probably never...

Replacement Singers in the Hall of Fame

Yesterday, in the comments section, we had an interesting discussion about singers who came into a group, replacing another singer, and went on to have a career that would land them in the Southern Gospel Hall of Fame. It would be quite an interesting exercise to...

Farewell, Louisville

Farewell, Louisville. It has been thirty-two hours since the final notes of Louisville's final National Quartet Convention echoed off the rafters of Freedom Hall. Booths have been torn down, chairs and speakers have been put away, and artists and attendees have...

Tracy Stuffle returns to ICU

Yesterday evening, The Perrys posted that Tracy Stuffle has been taken back to intensive care: Tracy is back in ICU. Pneumonia is worse. Kidneys not functioning the way they would like. I am just getting to the hospital from the road. Ever since his January stroke,...

An Interview with Glenn Couch

I recently had the opportunity to interview Glenn Couch, who sang lead for the Weatherfords for around three years in the 1960s. Daniel: Did you grow up around Gospel Music? If not, what was your first exposure to this music? Glenn: I was born into a Gospel singing...