Sound clips posted for Greatly Blessed (Gaither Vocal Band)

Sound clips have been posted for all of the songs on the new Gaither Vocal Band CD Greatly Blessed; listen here (hat tip, JT). A couple of thoughts:

  • Interestingly, Gaither put the three songs this lineup has already recently recorded first. If this is intentional, is he (a) capitalizing on the song’s popularity, or, completely on the other hand, (b) getting them out of the way quickly?
  • We were wondering if the arrangement David Phelps has been staging live merging “You are my All in All” with Pachlbel’s Canon in D was the version the Gaither Vocal Band was going to cut. The answer: Yes.
  • David Phelps will be taking the lead on Don Francisco’s “He’s Alive.” If there was ever a song cut out for the five-man “wall of sound” the new GVB lineup is capable of, this should be it. Watch for it to bring down houses everywhere the group performs.
  • The Talley Trio cut “He’s Alive” one or two years ago. In all likelihood, this reminded Gaither of the song. But this isn’t the only song brought in from the Talley repertoire; Wes Hampton is singing the old Talleys song “He is Here.”

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48 Letters to the Editor

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  1. Wow, Wes sounds awesome on the title track. I’ve said for a while that he needs to get a heartier sound in his lower register, and it looks like he’s been working on that. I didn’t even realize it was him at first…assumed it was (yet another) Michael feature until I stopped and realized it sounded different…then thought it was David for a brief moment before finally remembering that Wes had said it would be featuring him. Of course then I went and listened to it again, realized, “Oh yeah. That is Wes!” Am getting *really* excited about his solo CD now.

    • I agree. I had originally thought it was David until I read your comment and listen to it again. I’m pretty excited to see what style his solo CD will be.

      • I could tell it was Wes, but man he sounds great on that and the last.

    • I agree. He has a great lower register also.

  2. Oh yeah, and Gordon is having way too much fun on “When He Blest My Soul.” There ought to be a law against having that much fun playing the piano.

  3. Least favorites for me so far sound like “Love Like I’m Leavin'” and “Ain’t Nobody.” But, I’m really excited that “You Are My All in All” is that same arrangement with Pachelbel. Very nice.

    • Yeah, I wasn’t a fan of LLIL on the DVD either

  4. Oh man… What a beautiful tone Wes has on “He is Here.” Simply sublime.

    Hmmmm, maybe I’ll just download the Wes tracks and leave the rest…? 😉

    • Nah, He’s Alive will be a must-have, too. 😉

      • As I said before, that one is good, especially the chorus, but it just takes waaaay too long to unfold. And David does sound good on it, but he’s hamming it up a little too much IMO. But that’s just David… 😉

        “When He Blest My Soul” might be worth it just for Gordon’s piano work.

      • Took me about 20 seconds to tell it was David.

  5. The title track needs to be the first single.

    • Agreed, but I suspect the first single will be “Better Day.”

  6. He Is Here – AMAZING
    You Are My All In All – Love the background echo in the chorus
    Please Forgive Me – This will be a good song to stage

  7. About He’s Alive. It’s not a big deal but I don’t think the Talley’s recording of the song had anything to do with Gaither recording it. The reason I say that is because there is a video on youtube of David singing the song on James Robison’s tv program during David’s solo days. I suspect this video is maybe 4 years old. Perhaps this is why Bill wanted to record the song.

    • The first instance of David singing the song is found on his first solo project, “Journey To Grace,” which was released in 1994 and is a rare find these days. While most of the project is pretty low-key, “He’s Alive” is probably the standout, with Phelps doing a high-ending that is typical of him these days.

    • Greg – OK. Good point.

  8. David Phelps was performing He’s Alive in his solo career before returning to GVB. Here’s the link to a Youtube clip of him doing the song on James Robison’s TV show that was posted in February 2008:

    As an earlier poster noted the song is a little slow out of the gate and he doesn’t really get started until after the 3:00 mark. At 4:26–oh my goodness! He more than compensates.

    So I’m thinking the reason that Mr. Gaither included this song is because David wanted to do it. (will become new Nessum Dorma in their concerts)

    • It is more than worth the slower entrance. It’s a dynamic song that is perfect for David’s voice. I can’t wait to hear it in its entirety.

    • “will become new Nessun Dorma”

      I sure hope so! Its lyrics are far to be preferred!

      • Not to mention that David’s particular rendition of that was an unintentionally humorous grab-bag of styles…

      • Amen to that…lol. It is nice to hear a gospel message, and in English, too!

      • “David sang a wonderful Italian aria tonight…He doesn’t know it in Spanish, mother…”

  9. Since Ruth you mentioned concerts I thought I would bring up Gaither concerts to see if I was alone in this observation. Maybe some folks can give me some feedback. I went to purchase tickets for an upcoming Gaither concert. I have seen several quality southern gospel groups in concert in the past. It’s been years since Ive seen the GVB. I am a big fan, but I will admited to being very surprised at the prices for Gaither’s event. The good seats will run over 100.00 for 2 and even the “cheap” seats are running 80.00 a pair. I know there are several artists involved and maybe I should understand it isnt a Vocal Band only concert, but it still seems spendy to me. Especially because I just saw the Booth Brothers for about 18.00 a ticket. Am I being unreasonable, or is this what’s expected for a Gaither event?

    • By the time you pay convenience fees etc. that is about what they cost. Whether or not it is worth it is up to you, however you get around 4 hours of music which in a sense is at least two concert’s worth.

      • I agree with quartet-man. It is a high ticket cost. But when you factor in the fact that there are so many artists on the programs, the fact that you have the opportunity to mingle with the artists at intermission and post-concert, and that the concerts usually run 4 hours or so, it’s well worth the cost of the ticket.

      • Ok Cool. Thanks for the input. It does make me feel a bit better about spending the money :o)

      • You’re welcome. Be sure and report back. I saw them in Indy again and liked it, but surely missed Michael. That was the bad spot because he was one of the main reasons I really wanted to go as I had only seen him with them live once around 1992.

        The Martins were back which was cool and the artists involved had changed somewhat since I had been there last which is good. It got to be too predictable for a while, but the legends are missed and admittedly, the artists at the Indy shows were always stripped down than the videos.

  10. I am a little disappointed that they’re including three tracks they already recorded. It seems unnecessary to me when people are so hungry for new music tailored to this 5-man lineup.

    Better Day – It’s a decent song at face value, but not a great one in my opinion. It’s one of those songs that I enjoy at first. But then it sticks in my head and I begin to tire of it very quickly.

    He’s Alive – I am highly anticipating the full version of this song. I know David will deliver a superb performance.

    Please Forgive Me – I still think it interesting they the GVB is finally recording a Gerald Crabb song. It couldn’t be a more perfect fit. We heard a longer segment of it at this link that Daniel posted earlier this week.. The arc and powerhouse of vocals on the final chorus is AMAZING!

    I Know How to Say Thank You – Although we could spend time deliberating the quality of Mark’s voice, the sincerity and heart he puts into his song delivery is unparalleled to me. He captivates me when he delivers a song and makes me melt.

    He Is Here – This is one of my all-time favorite Kirk Talley-penned pieces. It puts me into such a mode of worship. Wes sounds very solid on it and I am very much looking forward to hearing the entire song.

  11. My guess as to why the 1st 3 songs are included is that this is a studio album, as opposed to the previously released versions being live cuts from the dvds. And with Michael, you never get the same song twice (could never say that about Guy – ahem).

    And yes, Wes sounds amazing. He continues to blossom as a member of this particular VB, more than likely because he doesn’t have to try to be David Phelps anymore. He can just be Wes.

    Nothing wrong with the quality of Mark’s voice – he sounds better than he ever has. There’s a smooth richness to it that is just lovely.

    Maybe I’m the only one around here that remembers when He’s Alive was a hit for Don Francisco? It was huge – and I tired of it pretty quickly. I love listening to David, but I have a feeling that this song will not be one of my favorites. That’s ok – plenty of others to love.

    Does anybody know who wrote Greatly Blessed, Highly Favored? It sounds like a Larry Gatlin song to me.

    I’ve always loved Please Forgive Me, but it sounds like they’ve kicked it up into a whole ‘nother level. Wow. Can’t wait to hear the whole song. Sounds like the new great power ballad in their catalog…

    • Janet, when I heard the clip of Greatly Blessed on I thought “Man, that sounds like All The Gold In California.” 🙂

    • I’m pretty sure it was written by Larry Gatlin and Bill Gaither – if I’m remembering correctly.

  12. Greatly Blessed, Highly Favored was written by Larry Gatlin & Bill Gaither. It’s a re-write to the tune of “All the Gold in California.” I like it.

    • Seriously? Wow, that’s pretty…interesting. Hopefully the lyrics overcome the inevitable cheese factor. The old Gatlin Brothers song did have some nice harmonies, and I can hear a 5-man group giving it a very rich sound.

    • Thanks, Daniel. Now I know why it sounded like a Gatlin song! 🙂

    • I just saw this after posting the post above. It certainly has some similarities, but some changes.

  13. It’s disappointing to see still MORE cover songs by GVB. Yes, some of them are good songs, but there are many great new songs that need to be heard, too.

    BTW, the Talley Trio didn’t just record a new version of “He’s Alive,” they released it to radio.

  14. From the snippets, I think my favorites will be

    02. When He Blest My Soul

    04. You Are My All In All
    05. Please Forgive Me
    06. Greatly Blessed, Highly Favored
    07. He’s Alive

    13. He Is Here

    Lowry’s lead might be a good song, well have to wait and see. Out of the ones above “Please Forgive Me” might be my favorite. Greatly Blessed’s melody isn’t as good as All the Gold, but it is still good. You Are My All in All might be pretty good from the sound of it, He is Here sounds really good so far and He’s Alive should be good too.

    • Hey…you stole my list. No fair! 😉

      • We can share. 😛

      • Okay, sounds good. Oh yeah, and man, you should start your own blog…I’d read it! Love reading your comments.

      • Thanks. I guess my problem with a blog would be I wouldn’t post a lot. I can certainly talk a lot if I am interested, have the time etc. I don’t keep as informed as I used to which would make it tougher too. The blogs I read help keep me informed though. 🙂

  15. Speaking of the Vocal Band, does anyone know if Jonathan Pierce ever spoke on any of the Homecoming videos? Because I’ve never seen a whole homecoming video in which he spoke.

    • I guess I need to watch every single one and see, but I don’t recall him ever sharing at all unless it was a response or something. However, that isn’t all that rare on the videos. Usually there is more music and less talking unless perhaps it is a GVB video, but even then they mostly sing.

  16. Okay, thanks. I appreciate the response.

  17. Additional clips here, plus the chance to preorder with free download: [edit: broken link removed]

  18. i think GVB has outdone themselves nobody has mentioned muddy water the uptempo michael feature thats is going a new uptempo rocker for the vocal band i listened to it sounds like it going to be my favorite song on Greatly Blessed and David on the song clean should be a beautiful song love those are my favorites so far guess i have to wait till august the 10th

  19. Hey does anyone know when they will be shipping this CD for those who pre-ordered it? It’s my first time pre-ordering from and so idk if yall usually get things early or what not. I’m dying to listen to this album!