Singing News Fan Awards: Top 5 Nominees announced

Yesterday evening, Singing News announced the top 5 nominees in the Singing News Fan Awards (). Here’s a list breaking down changes from 2012:

Favorite Artist

  • Unchanged: Booth Brothers, Greater Vision, Perrys, Triumphant Qt
  • 2013: Collingsworth Family
  • 2012: Brian Free & Assurance

Favorite Traditional Quartet

  • Unchanged: Kingdom Heirs, Legacy Five, Mark Trammell Qt, Triumphant Qt
  • 2013: Brian Free & Assurance
  • 2012: Inspirations

Favorite Mixed Group

  • Unchanged: Collingsworth Family, Hoppers, Isaacs, McKameys, Perrys

Favorite Trio

  • Unchanged: Booth Brothers, Greater Vision, Jeff & Sheri Easter, Karen Peck & New River, Whisnants

Favorite Soloist

  • Unchanged: Mark Bishop, Jason Crabb, Ivan Parker, Guy Penrod
  • 2013: TaRanda Greene
  • 2012: Squire Parsons

Favorite Male Singer

  • Unchanged: Ronnie Booth, Joseph Habedank, Ivan Parker, Arthur Rice
  • 2013: Eric Bennett
  • 2012: Gerald Wolfe

Favorite Female Singer

  • Unchanged: Sheri Easter, Karen Peck Gooch, Kim Hopper, Libbi Stuffle
  • 2013: TaRanda Greene
  • 2012: Susan Whisnant

Favorite Young Artist

  • Unchanged: Morgan Easter, Trey Ivey, Amber Thompson, Jordan Wilburn
  • 2013: Olivia Collingsworth
  • 2012: Phillip Collingsworth

The Collingsworth Family has had a completely unprecedented streak of three consecutive wins for three consecutive siblings – Brooklyn, Courtney, and, last year, Phillip. Will they manage a complete run with Olivia this year?

Favorite Tenor

  • Unchanged: Chris Allman, Michael Booth, Brian Free, David Phelps, David Sutton

Favorite Lead

  • Unchanged: Ronnie Booth, Joseph Habedank, Clayton Inman, Arthur Rice
  • 2013: Gerald Wolfe
  • 2012: Scott Fowler

Favorite Baritone

  • Unchanged: Jim Brady, Rodney Griffin, Scott Inman, Mark Trammell
  • 2013: Mark Lowry
  • 2012: Scott Howard

Favorite Bass

  • Unchanged: Pat Barker, Eric Bennett, Mike Holcomb, Tim Riley
  • 2013: Tracy Stuffle
  • 2012: Glenn Dustin

Favorite Soprano

  • Unchanged: Lauren Talley Alvey, Brooklyn Collingsworth, Karen Peck Gooch, Kim Hopper, Sonya Isaacs Yeary

Favorite Alto

  • Unchanged: Courtney Collingsworth, Sheri Easter, Connie Hopper, Libbi Stuffle, Susan Whisnant

Favorite Musician

  • Unchanged: Kim Collingsworth, Gordon Mote, Jeff Stice, Kevin Williams
  • 2013: Roger Fortner
  • 2012: Stewart Varnado

Favorite Band

  • Unchanged: Dove Brothers, Gaither Vocal Band, Isaacs, Kingdom Heirs, Primitive Quartet

Favorite Songwriter (Performing): 2013: Mark Bishop, Jim Brady, Rodney Griffin, Joseph Habedank, Scott Inman

Favorite Non-Performing Songwriter: 2013: Ricky Free, Marty Funderburk, Mosie Lister, Rebecca Peck, Dianne Wilkinson

The categories were split out from the combined 2012 category, Favorite Songwriter. Last year, the Favorite Songwriter nominees were Jim Brady, Rodney Griffin, Joseph Habedank, Scott Inman, and Dianne Wilkinson. Wilkinson was the only non-performing writer on the list; her move to the Favorite Non-Performing Songwriter category this year appears to have opened the door for Mark Bishop to make his way into the top 5.

Favorite Album

  • Unchanged: Albums from Booth Brothers
  • 2013: Hoppers, Brian Free & Assurance, Greater Vision, Perrys
  • 2012: Legacy Five, Inspirations, Triumphant Quartet, Kingdom Heirs

Favorite Song

  • Unchanged: Songs from Booth Brothers, Brian Free & Assurance, Greater Vision, Legacy Five, McKameys, Perrys, Triumphant Quartet
  • 2013: Songs from Kingdom Heirs, Tribute Quartet, Whisnants
  • 2012: Songs from Karen Peck & New River, Inspirations, Gold City

This year, the Horizon Group award was subdivided into four categories.

  • Favorite New Traditional Quartet: Canton Junction, Carolina Boys, Old Paths, Paul’s Journey, Union Street
  • Favorite New Mixed Group: Allen Family, Heaven’s Mountain Band, Mylon Hayes Family, Sneed Family, Taylors
  • Favorite New Trio: 11th Hour, Beyond the Ashes, Freedom Trio, Hyssongs, Red Roots
  • Favorite New Soloist: Chris Hester, Billy Hodges, Steve Ladd, Abby Paskvan, Angela Primm

Last year’s Horizon Group nominees were: Carolina Boys, Old Paths, Red Roots, Taylors, Wilburn & Wilburn. Of these five, WIlburn & Wilburn was automatically disqualified from eligibility this year by winning last year. The Old Paths, The Taylors, and Red Roots all make another appearance (one each in three different categories); the Carolina Boys do not.

Overall, there is very little change from last year’s top five. Other than a few changes prompted by personnel changes in the last twelve months, most of the changes are one familiar face for another. About the only two that might mark any significant shift in Singing News readers’ loyalties would be TaRanda Greene’s new top 5 nominations for soloist and female singer, and the Collingsworth Family’s top 5 appearance for favorite artist.


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19 Letters to the Editor

Southern Gospel Journal welcomes letters to the editor. We will post the most thoughtful and insightful submissions. Ground rules: Don't attack or belittle groups or fellow posters, or advance heresies rejected by orthodox Christianity. Do keep comments positive, constructive, and on topic.
  1. I have been new to Southern Gospel over the past couple of years. Is there any reason why EHSS have been left off these lists? I think there are the best thing out there.

    • I think “left off” isn’t the most accurate term to use here. These aren’t industry-determined awards; they are awards voted on by fans who subscribe to the Singing News. So it’s not like anyone chose to omit them; it’s just that the top 5 male quartets (Triumphant, Legacy Five, Mark Trammell Quartet, Kingdom Heirs, and Brian Free & Assurance) have more fans among the Singing News subscriber base.

    • EHSS’s fan base and Singing News subscribers are different segments of population, that really don’t intersect that much. You’ll notice not many Gaither folks, either.

      • Like Daniel and Brian stated above, it is all about the demographics of the voters.
        Case in point: Ask the people in KY “What is your favorite fast food restaurent for chicken?” KFC would be the answer.
        Ask the same question in GA and the answer would be “Chick-fil-A.”

        Take it one step further. knowing Daniel would not do it, having Daniel conduct his own awards project and ask the users here to nominate their favorite blogger. I would think Daniel would win!

        Nothing wrong with that outcome or any other, either.

  2. Maybe because either people feel they are not traditional enough, or because they have kind of done their own thing over the last number of years. One thing for sure is, they don’t need all the attention from the singing news fan awards in order to maintain a large and faithful fan base.

  3. By the way, I love this website. It is my first site I check everyday to find out about all the latest goings on. Thanks for all the hard work Daniel.

  4. Very classy gesture by the fans to nominate Tracy Stuffle.

    • Agreed. What a moment it would be if he won. (Even if he’s not there.)

  5. Agreed on the nomination of Tracy Stuffle. In one way though, I think it is Pat Barker’s year for well deserved recognition.

    I also hope the Old Paths finally win the Horizon Award: 2 #1 singles and have had a great consistent sound for a few years now. One of the best quartets in the business.

    Congrats to all nominees though.

    • Hard to see the bass part coming down to anyone but Tim Riley or Eric Bennett. A soon-to-be inducted Hall of Famer or the bass for the most “popular” quartet in SG.

      • Eric Bennett is definitely the expected winner here. Typically, the SN Fan Awards are so consistent from year to year that the expected winner wins. But every now and then, a new favorite rises to the top. That started happening with the Perrys in 2004, with the Collingsworth Family about two years ago, et cetera – and could happen with Pat Barker at one of these points. And there’s also the possibility that Tracy Stuffle has been so on the forefront of everyone’s thoughts and prayers that he’ll get votes as a show of support.

      • Good point. I would not be surprised with Tim Riley or Eric Bennet would win. They are two of the top right now and Tim has been tops for a while.

  6. At 40 I am old enought to remember filling ballots out and mailing them into the Singing News…and of course there was no ballot box shenanigans…LOL…not in SG!

  7. So glad to see the Collingsworth Family continuing to get more nominations. Also glad to see 3 of my top 5 albums make the voters top 5. My list would replace the Booth Brothers and Greater Vision greatest hits albums with the Talley’s “Love Won” and Mark Trammell Quartet’s “Lifetime”. Nothing against the Booth Brothers and Greater Vision (both albums are great), I just didn’t really consider them new albums since I already had almost all of the songs on other recordings.

    Would have liked to see Gold City get a few more nominations (Daniel for baritone for example), and would like to see Bill Shivers get some recognition for lead and/or male vocalist.

  8. I think the Collingsworth Family will be a big contender in favorite artist. I may pay more attention to the Collingsworth Family but they seem to be singing to more people than most groups.

    (I base that off some of the twitter pictures of their concerts they put up recently.)

    • I don’t know what the total numbers are but I know the Collingsworth Family only does about 10 dates a month by design – they’ve created enough demand that I imagine those 10 dates are pretty full events.

      • In other words, when they’re in, say, north Central Ohio, or western North Carolina, they’re there certainly no more than twice per year, and often once only 18 months. So when they’re in your area, you know that you need to go see them if you want to see them this year!

  9. If I were going to join a group and had my choice, I think I would choose “Unchanged”, they seem to be nominated for several awards. Then again, I would ask them to change their name. Unchanged doesn’t seem like a good name for a group of people presumably changed. 😉