Live Blog: Singing News Fan Awards 2013

Daniel’s Siblings are covering the Singing News Fan Awards since OLDER brother Daniel is at work!  If the stream stays up, we hope to bring you live coverage for at least a few hours. Since it is a live blog, the newest notes are at the top.

It looks like the award show is over! Congratulations to the winners!

Louise Mandrell presented the Favorite Artist award: The Booth Brothers.

The Singing News twitter account gives a link to view the rest of the show. It like Louise Mandrell won the James D. Vaughn Impact Award. She sang a song with the Triumphant Quartet.

According to Singing News, the Booth Brothers won Favorite Album, Greatest Hits–Live.

It looks like the feed may have gone down altogether.

According to Singing News, the Perrys won Favorite Song: I Got A Hold of God This Morning! Wish we could have seen their acceptance speech.

The video feed went down. 🙁  It appears a spammer may have knocked out the feed for the rest of us. 🙁

The Whisnants are singing their top 10 nominated song, All is Well.

SGMA Class of 2013: Tim Riley.

Mark Trammell went off-script and requested prayer concerning a catastrophic church bus accident near Gatlinburg. There are at least 8 fatalities. He said that some groups had sung for them this morning. He mentioned the song Faces, and how we never know whose Face a person may next see. The church bus group is from Statesville, NC.  Mark led the group in prayer for the families and those hurting.

Favorite Songwriter: Rodney Griffin. Nick Trammell said that it was his unprecedented 15th win in a row. He said it is an unbelievable honor to be singled out of such a group of special people.

The Booth Brothers sang, “Right in the Middle” and we have heard that it is their first time to do it live!  Michael is reading the words off a paper!

David Sutton read the list of nominees for Favorite Soprano. The winner is: Kim Hopper. Dean and Karlye accepted the award for her. Kim is not feeling well today. Dean and Karlye talked of her ministry over the years.

Favorite Alto: Libbi Stuffle! She’s trying not to cry…thanking the Harper Agency, Bill Bailey, their pastor, and Daywind. She admonished groups to sing songs with meaning, and sing them as though God was standing there watching. She also thanked her mom and family for their support.

Next Presenters: Mark and Nick Trammell.

SGMA Class of 2013: Thomas Dorsey. Karen Peck Gooch sang “a song in his style”, Fix Me Jesus.

Sheri Easter read the nominees for Favorite Tenor. The winner is: Michael Booth. He recognized his wife, Vicki. He spoke of how he wishes he could do what Brian Free, David Phelps, and others can do, and how he would go off the road if it was anything other than Gospel music. He knows that anything he can do is because of God using him in song.

Brian Free & Assurance sang their top 10 nominated song, I Want to Be That Man.

Favorite Baritone: Jim Brady.  He talked about how songs make an eternal impact on people.

Phil Collingsworth, Sr. read the nominees (in which he mentioned Joseph Habedank as a soloist!) The Favorite Lead Singer is: Ronnie Booth. He spoke of the advice he gives new singers: “Seek ye first the Kingdom, and He will take care of the rest.”

Next Presenters: Debra Talley and Lauren Talley Alvey. Debra Talley confirmed that Tracy Stuffle was singing bass on the phone!

SGMA Class of 2013: “Little” Roy Lewis. In honor of Little Roy Lewis, the Perrys sang their top 10 nominated song, I Got A hold of God of God This Morning. Libbi has Tracy on FaceTime holding the phone right by the microphone! It looks like he might even be singing over the phone!  “Little” Roy Lewis scampered on the stage and said it was the biggest honor he has gotten. He also recognized J.D. Sumner.

Favorite Bass: Eric Bennett. He said he is overwhelmed. He thanks family and friends.

Favorite Traditional Quartet: Triumphant Quartet. Jeff Stice thanking the fans. He dedicated the award to their wives, who allow them to do what they do. Clayton thanked the rest of their team.

Favorite Mixed Group: The Collingsworth Family. Mr. Collingsworth talked of the hard work that is done. He said it is a joy to have four children who have fallen in love with this music. “To God be the Glory, great things he has done.”

Next presenters: Ronnie and Michael Booth.

SGMA Class of 2013 inductee: Polly Lewis. In honor of Polly Lewis, the McKameys sang, Unspoken Request. Sheri Easter accepted the honor for her mom. She told how her mother is now bed-ridden, and they told her several months ago that she was being inducted into the Hall of Fame, and the example and hero she has been to the family.

Favorite Non-Performing Songwriter: Dianne Wilkinson! She said the crowd has no idea how much it means to her that the award came from them, the fans. She said she is committed to writing the truth till Jesus comes back.

Tribute Quartet singing their top 10 nominated song, Good News From Jerusalem.

Eric Bennett read the nominees for Favorite Young Artist. The winner is: Olivia Collingsworth! In a completely unprecedented, and likely never-to-be-repeated streak, the Collingsworth Family has now had four consecutive Young Artist winners! Olivia says she loves the music, and thanks God for the privilege to sing this music!

Connie, Dean, and Mike Hopper are the next presenters. The announced the Favorite Trio: The Booth Brothers! Michael spoke of his great respect for the Couriers, and spoke of the responsibility all the “new” groups have to carry on.

SGMA Class of 2013 inductee: Duane Nicholson. In honor of Nicholson, the Kingdom Heirs sang their Top 10 nominated song, Just Preach Jesus. Mr. Nicholson told of how his original influence was the Blackwood Brothers. He thanked his family and Neil Enloe and other members of the group over the years.

Favorite Band: Gaither Vocal Band: Matthew Holt, Greg Ritchie, Kevin Williams. Kevin said he has been playing for the GVB for 20 years. Greg Ritchie thanked Jeff & Sheri Easter for 14 years in their band. Matthew Holt told of how he prayed at 7 years old that God would let him play for a quartet. Holt also thanked his wife, family, and the Gaithers. In closing, he thanked Tracy and Libbi Stuffle for their influence and sticking by him through the years.

The Favorite Musician is: Kim Collingsworth! This is historic since it is the first time in a long time that the previous winner did not halt their winning streak due to an untimely death. Mrs. Collingsworth said she is surprised and thanked the fans for their support and coming to concerts and praying for them. She thanked God and her family. Jeff Easter asked her to play a song, and some requests were yelled out from the audience. she ended up playing In the Garden.

Steve French announced the nominees for favorite musician.

Favorite Male Singer: Ronnie Booth.

Next presenters: Jeff Easter and Morgan Easter.  Jeff told Morgan to talk fast, and she did. She talked very fast and had a lot to say!

SGMA Class of 2013 inductee: John T. Benson, Jr. Mr. Benson died in 1966. In honor of Mr. Benson, The Triumphant Quartet sang their top 10 song, Take it From Me, Meshach.

Favorite Female Singer (nominees announced by Rodney Griffin): Libbi Stuffle! She received a standing ovation as she stood up and started making her way to the front! She said this has been the hardest year of her life, spending more time at home and at the hospital, but she said she will be back, Tracy will be back, together. Without the grace and mercy of God she could not be standing there. Nothing is impossible with God. She dedicated the award to Tracy.

Courtney Collingsworth said that 30,000+ awards were cast and introduced Mr. Bates who keeps the votes secure. Brooklyn then introduced Danny Jones and Les Butler of the Singing News.

The Award Show band played When We meet our Blessed Savior in the Sky. The band included Matthew Holt on piano, Roger Fortner on bass, Josh Singletary on keyboards, and Dennis Murphy on drums.

The audio is finally on, it was fixed in less than 10 minutes.  The first award is the Favorite Soloist award. Winner: Ivan Parker.

The show appeared to start off with the Collingsworth Family singing an up-temp song, but no audio. Does anyone know what it was?  Mrs. Collingsworth and her daughters appear to be the first hosts/ presenters.

The following award winners were announced before the show:

  • Favorite Small Market DJ: John Whisnant (WCIS Morganton, NC)

  • Favorite Medium Market DJ: Lottie Squires (WCKB Dunn, NC)

  • Favorite Large Market DJ: Daniel Britt (WXRI Winston-Salem, NC)

  • Favorite New Trio: Red Roots

  • Favorite New Traditional Quartet: The Old Paths

  • Favorite New Mixed Group: The Taylors

  • Favorite New Soloist: Steve Ladd



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45 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. Libbi’s win, standing ovation, and speech was definitely an emotional and heartwarming moment!

    (I’m listening in from work. Don’t have time to blog, but I may jump in with a comment here or there.)

  2. Can anyone share a workable link?

  3. LOL…I thought this seem a little random: “In honor of Mr. Benson, The Triumphant Quartet sang their top 10 song, Take it From Me, Meshach.” 🙂

    • They’ve had similar randomness with Hall of Fame honorees in past years.

      • They should have had someone do “When the Saints Go Marching In”. Isn’t he credited with the verses on that, or was that his father?

    • Yes, it seems totally random at times.

  4. It sounds like the Award Girl is one of David Sutton’s daughters, in case anyone else was wondering.

  5. It will be interesting to see who is honored by “I Want to Be That Man” and “He Didn’t When He Could Have Passed By”!

  6. Thank you. The one on Facebook wasn’t working for me.

  7. Just Preach Jesus in honor of Mr. Nicholson does make sense!

  8. Wow! The Booth Brothers devoting their entire acceptance speech for Favorite Trio for a tribute to the Couriers was an incredibly classy move.

  9. Congratulations to Miss Dianne! Not counting Song of the Year wins, which mainly acknowledge groups but sometimes mention songwriters, this is her first SN Fan Award. Talk about overdue, but better late than never!

  10. Michael Booth’s acceptance speech was great and showed an enormous amount of integrity. No wonder so many folks love him and the Booth Brothers.

  11. On a side note, and I harp on this every year, it looks like the Booth Brothers, Triumphant, and the Collingsworth Family are still the “flavor of the day”. Very little change from last year’s awards. Guess that’s what happens when you have the same fans voting year after year…..

    • It can seem like that, but evidently, the fans favorites are their FAVORITES! It seemed to us that the Hoppers may have gotten less than usual, with the Collingworths picking up a few more. It’s also interesting to compare the Singing News results to the NQC results, and their similarities and differences.

    • It’s true – and that is definitely the case with the Singing News Fan Awards. They’ve always been like this, and I don’t really forsee it changing any time soon. SG fans like what they like, and it takes them a while to decide the like something different too!

      I think the biggest culprit this year of this is the Booth Brothers’ win for Favorite Album for Greatest Hits Live! That release went relatively unnoticed all year and yielded one single – “Right In the Middle” – that played second fiddle to “I Played In the Band” this year. It’s also strange that “Right In the Middle” landed a Favorite Song nomination when it wasn’t anywhere near a hit single for the group…

      • Daywind probably promoted it in their nominations ad, and there probably wasn’t similar promotion behind “Played in The Band.”

  12. Not trying to be negative but I think the constant change in the Hoppers line-up may be what’s tripping them up.

    • I don’t think it’s that so much as it is the fact that the Collingsworth Family are just more popular at this point. It’s not a slam to The Hoppers – just a fact.

      • What do you mean by constant changes in the Hopper’s line-up? It’s been Dean, Kim, Connie, & Claude since the early 90’s.

        I couldn’t be happier for the Collingsworth Family. They work very hard to attain vocal perfection, and they are very deserving of the recognition they received. I think it’s just the beginning for them, barring unforeseen changes.

      • I believe AJ was employing a level of tongue-in-cheek sarcasm.

  13. Is this the first time for a female to win Favorite Musician?

    • For this awards show, I believe it is.

  14. Thank you, Daniel’s Siblings, for doing this! We sure would have missed some good things if you hadn’t. Thanks Daniel for your thoughtfulness for your fans here on SGB!

    • They deserve the credit for this one!

    • You’re welcome!

  15. Hey, Daniel. Someone commented on the Singing News’ Facebook that the live streaming could be viewed again. Do you know anything about this and when it will be? Thanks!

    • I know that, in past years, they have made the video available for viewing later. I do not know about this year.

      • Ok, I’ll keep my eyes open. Thanks!

  16. Someone let us know if the awards show is available for later viewing. Thank you!!

  17. Just for once, I would love to see a breakdown of the percentage of the different votes for each award. For example, how big of a gap was it between Kim Hopper and the runner up? Speaking of Rodney winning 15 straight Songwriting awards, I think Kim has about that many fav soprano award wins in a row.

    • Kim has Rodney beat (at least according to Wikipedia). Kim’s streak started in 1997.

      This year’s winners haven’t been added yet, but you can see them all here:

  18. “Phil Collingsworth, Sr. read the nominees (in which he mentioned Joseph Habedank as a soloist!)”

    Unfortunately, I had to miss the program but was wondering if someone could elaborate on this comment. Does this indicate anything about Joseph’s future plans, or just that he was not currently affiliated with a group? Thanks to anyone who heard the comment and can clarify.

    • That’s all that was said. It was the first we heard of it and we don’t know if it was a mistake or not, but that is what was said.

      • I’m guessing it was just an emcee’s way around a potentially awkward situation, e.g. “formerly of the Perrys.” I have not heard of Habedank booking any solo engagements.

  19. Libbi says on the perrys facebook page that Eric Bennett gave her his favorite Bass award and told her to give it to Tracy. That shows how stellar of a man Eric Bennett is.

    • Wow!

  20. Hey, y’all, I saw some discussion that Singing News’ technical crew is looking to have video from the show online somewhere in the neighborhood of next Tuesday. I’m sure it’ll be at Singing News’s website.

  21. Kim Hopper is in my opinion the definition of a southern gospel soprano. There are of course many great sopranos in southern gospel that deserve recognition, but there’s something about Kim that sets her apart from the rest.

    Firstly, her voice has a richness to it that appeals to most listeners. Her stage presence is yet to be matched by another soprano. She is an expressionist on stage, people can not only hear the power but also see as she gathers up strength from the depth of her gut to produce a powerful note that brings audiences to their feet. Her voice is also middle-of-the-road stylistically speaking. To further explain that, there are traditional voices (the Speer ladies), there are progressive voices (Joyce Martin Sanders, Lauren Talley Alvey) and there are sopranos with voices adapted to country, Sonya Yeary’s weeping vocal style comes to mind here. Then there is Kim Hopper, she neither leans heavily to one side, thereby giving her an advantage. If she were to be placed in a traditional group like the McKammeys or in a bit progressive one like Sisters or the middle-of-the-road not so progressive not so traditional Collingsworths, her voice would fit in. That is why I think she is going to keep scooping the soprano award, because her voice is liked by the traditional and progressive southern gospel lovers.

    I also think shouting time really helped tilt the balance in her favour in 97 when she took over the favourite soprano spot from Karen. Perhaps one day, a group is gonna do a song that will make their soprano outdo herself and win peoples votes.

  22. Good points, John. In my previous comments (which appear to have been taken down) I was not intending to say that Kim was not worthy of all the awards the fans have bestowed upon her. I agree that she is top notch when it comes to being a true Southern Gospel soprano. And I guess the fans stick with somebody they love and enjoy year after year. I was just expressing my frustration with that fact that some other well deserving ladies haven’t been getting the recognition they deserve. But I guess I could have done it in a more constructive manner.

    • Darrell, thank you, and yes. Thanks for coming back and saying it in a constructive manner!

      As with so many comments of that nature, even if the comment itself was not across the line, I thought that it would have provoked a number of readers to post heated responses that would have been across the line. Keeping the peace around here is often worked out in the gray areas! 🙂

  23. Several readers were asking for a link to watch the Fan Awards after the fact. It has now been posted here:

    • It looks like this video would be the same we saw, with the silence at the beginning and the missing audio and video at the end, but Singing News indicates they are working to provide a more complete video in the future!