The Cathedral Quartet

The Cathedral Quartet, one of the finest examples of Southern Gospel quartet singing, toured the world from 1964 through 1999. These pages, archived from a site called cathedralstribute.com, preserve their history. Learn more about their members over the years, or about the groups they sang in before and after their Cathedral tenure. View a comprehensive discography, a list of the awards the group received, or group pictures. Or, find the lyrics to about 150 songs the Cathedrals recorded.

Earlier visions of this research project included a discography; this has now been superseded by SGHistory’s excellent Cathedrals discography.

The final Cathedrals lineup (1996). Left to Right: Ernie Haase, Scott Fowler, Glen Payne, George Younce, Roger Bennett

History

The Cathedral Trio—Bobby Clark, Glen Payne, and Danny Koker—was formed at the Cathedral for Tomorrow in Akron, Ohio in 1963. It started as an outgrowth of Earl and Lily Weatherford’s ministry at Rex Humbard’s Cathedral of Tomorrow. All of the original Cathedral members sang with the group at one point or another. George Younce sang with the Weatherfords in the 1950s; when he left the group along with several other other members, Earl Weatherford hired Armond Morales to replace him. Glen Payne joined the group at the same time.

By 1963, Glen Payne, Bobby Clark, and Danny Koker were all part of the group. When Earl and Lily Weatherford decided to move to California that year, Payne, Clark, and Koker decided to stay with the Cathedral of Tomorrow, and the Cathedral Trio was born.

In 1964, they added bass George Younce and became a quartet. For the first several years of their existence, they performed and travelled with evangelist Rex Humbard, the pastor of the Cathedral for Tomorrow.

In 1968, tenor Bobby Clark left; he was replaced by Mack Taunton. Baritone and pianist Danny Koker left in 1969; he was replaced by baritone/pianist George Amon Webster. Also in 1969, Glen Payne and George Younce made the Cathedrals a separate business entity. Though they were no longer a part of the Cathedral of Tomorrow in Akron, they kept their home base in Stow, Ohio.

Over the next few years, the quartet struggled to survive. During this time, several tenors, baritones, and pianists stayed with the group for brief stints. Roger Horne replaced Mack Taunton at tenor; Bobby Clark returned briefly after Horne left. Roger Horne, Roy Tremble, and Bill Dykes all served short stints at the baritone position. Lorne Matthews, Jim Garstang, and George Amon Webster all played piano during this time.

In the years 1972-74, the Cathedrals established a stable lineup that would last for several years; Roy Tremble moved to the tenor position, George Amon Webster returned to the baritone position, and Haskell Cooley joined as pianist. They moved into the second tier of Southern Gospel groups with their 1974 single “The Last Sunday.” They finally started getting airplay on radio stations and winning awards.

During the late 1970s, Bill Gaither started introducing the Cathedrals to a contemporary audience through his PraiseGathering events. Though their popularity started expanding, the group took a severe hit in 1979 when three group members (Tremble, Webster, and newly arrived pianist Lorne Matthews) left to form their own trio, the Brothers.

However, Younce and Payne hired Kirk Talley to sing tenor and Steve Lee to sing baritone and play piano, and began to regroup. After a year on the road, Lee decided that he did not want to perform with a full-time quartet, and was replaced by Kingsmen bass guitarist and vocalist Mark Trammell. Roger Bennett was hired to play piano, and one of the most popular Cathedrals lineups had formed.

This lineup lasted until 1983, when Kirk Talley left to form the Talleys. He was replaced by Singing Americans tenor Danny Funderburk. From 1986-88, when Roger Bennett left the Cathedrals for about two years, Gerald Wolfe played the piano. He also sang vocals, most notably on the Cathedrals hit song “Champion of Love” from their “Symphony of Praise” project. After Gerald Wolfe left the Cathedrals to pursue a solo career, Roger Bennett returned and stayed with the Cathedrals until the group retired.

In 1987, George Younce had a heart attack. After a slow and difficult recovery, he was eventually able to return to the road.

In 1990, Danny Funderburk left the Cathedrals. After Kurt Young sang with the group for several months, Ernie Haase joined the group. Shortly thereafter, Mark Trammell left the group, to become one of the founding members of Greater Vision (along with former Cathedrals pianist Gerald Wolfe, who sings lead in the trio). Trammell was replaced by Scott Fowler.

This lineup of the Cathedral Quartet—with Ernie Haase singing tenor, Glen Payne singing lead, Scott Fowler singing baritone, George Younce singing bass, and Roger Bennett playing piano—lasted through the Cathedrals’ 1999 retirement. The Cathedrals had announced their retirement due to George Younce’s declining health; however, Glen Payne came down with and died of cancer during the Cathedrals’ farewell tour. Roger Bennett filled in at the lead position for their final farewell concerts.

Singing News Fan Awards

  • 1981: Favorite Bass (George Younce)
  • 1982: Favorite Group, Favorite Baritone (Glen Payne)
  • 1983: Mr. Gospel Music (Kirk Talley), Favorite Group, Favorite Song (“Step Into the Water”), Favorite First Tenor (Kirk Talley). Favorite Baritone (Mark Trammell), Favorite Bass (George Younce)
  • 1984: Favorite Group, Favorite Lead Singer (Glen Payne), Favorite Bass (George Younce)
  • 1985: Favorite First Tenor Danny Funderburk
  • 1986: Favorite Group, Favorite First Tenor (Danny Funderburk), Favorite Lead Singer (Glen Payne), Favorite Bass (George Younce), Favorite Video (Cathedrals in Concert)
  • 1987: Favorite Group, Favorite First Tenor (Danny Funderburk), Favorite Lead Singer (Glen Payne), Favorite Bass (George Younce), Favorite Newcomer (Gerald Wolfe), Marvin Norcross Award (Glen Payne & George Younce)
  • 1988: Favorite Baritone (Mark Trammell), Favorite Bass (George Younce), Favorite Southern Gospel Young Artist (Gerald Wolfe)
  • 1990: Favorite Album (I’ve Just Started Living)
  • 1991: Favorite Horizon Individual (Ernie Haase)
  • 1992: Favorite Horizon Individual (Scott Fowler), Favorite Bass (George Younce)
  • 1993: Favorite Bass (George Younce), Favorite Instrumentalist / Anthony Burger Award (Roger Bennett), Favorite Young Artist (Scott Fowler)
  • 1994: Favorite Group, Favorite Tenor (Ernie Haase), Favorite Lead (Glen Payne), Favorite Baritone (Scott Fowler), Favorite Bass Singer (George Younce), Favorite Instrumentalist (Roger Bennett), Favorite Young Artist (Scott Fowler)
  • 1995: Favorite Group, Favorite Album (High and Lifted Up), Favorite Song (“Jesus Has Risen”), Favorite Video (Reunion), Favorite Tenor (Ernie Haase), Favorite Lead (Glen Payne), Favorite Baritone (Scott Fowler), Favorite Bass Singer (George Younce), Favorite Instrumentalist (Roger Bennett), Favorite Young Artist (Scott Fowler)
  • 1996: Favorite Group, Favorite Album (A Cathedrals Reunion), Favorite Tenor (Ernie Haase), Favorite Lead (Glen Payne), Favorite Baritone (Scott Fowler), Favorite Bass Singer (George Younce), Favorite Instrumentalist (Roger Bennett)
  • 1997: Favorite Traditional Male Quartet, Favorite Tenor (Ernie Haase), Favorite Lead (Glen Payne), Favorite Baritone (Scott Fowler), Favorite Bass Singer (George Younce), Favorite Pianist / Anthony Burger Award (Roger Bennett)
  • 1998: Favorite Traditional Male Quartet, Favorite Lead (Glen Payne), Favorite Baritone (Scott Fowler), Favorite Bass Singer (George Younce), Favorite Pianist (Roger Bennett)
  • 1999: Favorite Male Singer (George Younce), Favorite Traditional Male Quartet, Favorite Album (Faithful), Favorite Tenor (Ernie Haase), Favorite Lead (Glen Payne), Favorite Baritone (Scott Fowler), Favorite Bass Singer (George Younce), Favorite Pianist (Roger Bennett)
  • 2000: Favorite Video (A Farewell Celebration)

Links

Regrettably, the official Cathedral Quartet website (cathedralquartet.com) closed on November 30, 2007. Websites of several former members’ groups are online:

Credits

Thanks to the following contributors to this research project: Gina Younce, Ernie Haase, Lorne & Jimmie Ruth Matthews, Bobby Clark, Bill & Jae Dykes, Steven Taunton, Randy Shelnut, Stewart Varnado, Daniel Britt, Dean Adkins, Chris Koiner, James Franklin, John Crenshaw, Eric Winston, Brandon Coomer, Nancy Capps, Phil Cross, Adam Edwards, Clarence Grigsby, Greg Buckler, Guy Swanner, Doug Taylor, Albert Gratton, David Stuart, Tina Reynolds, Carl, June Cullen, Levi Johnston, James Moore, Jeff Foster, Matt Paasch, Scott Morris, Terry S (quartetman), Clacy Williams, Jonathan Andrews, Steve Lee, Ed Sprouse, Dwight Parker, Jen (Nichols) Lake, Thomas Enyart, Gary Byrd, Kymberly Starr, Jerry Butler, Hou-Lin Chang, Matt Bartels, Sarah Kortright, Nicholas Hamm, D. Ann Bailey, Bethel M., Naomi Crutchfield, and Scott Fowler.