Jerry Martin leaves Dove Brothers

The Dove Brothers announced this afternoon that, after eight years with the group, Jerry Martin has left to pursue other interests. McCray Dove stated that he wishes Martin the best and will be announcing a new tenor soon.

I am planning on attending the Inspirations’ Fall Colors sing tomorrow afternoon in Franklin, NC. The three Southern Gospel groups appearing there are the Perrys, the Dove Brothers, and, of course, the host group, the Inspirations. (There will also be two bluegrass groups.) Oddly enough, two of the three groups I’ll be seeing tomorrow had a member leave this week—and, to top it off, the previous lead singer for the third group, the Inspirations’ Matt Dibler, left his current group, the Diplomats, to launch a solo career.

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16 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. Is he the tenor??

    • Yes, he is the tenor.

  2. Wow!!!! This has been one more crazy week! I love Jerry Martin’s voice. I wonder if he will stay in Southern Gospel. I hope so. He is one of the best tenors around. I can’t think of a quartet needing a tenor right off the top of my head but it will be interesting to see who the Dove Brothers get to replace him. The Dove Brothers have been leaning more and more to the country side of gospel music so I wonder if that had anything to do with him leaving? That is merely my speculation. I am not saying that it was or not but we can all see that McRay is wanting to take the Dove Brothers in the direction of The Oak Ridge Boys. Again, my opinion only….. Thanks for the heads up Daniel.

    • JC,
      On another message board, I read a similar suggestion about the change in styles having something to do with the decision, only that person’s speculation was the opposite of yours.

      That person wrote:
      “Do you think this has anything to do with the recent change in format and song styles the Doves have moved into? I always remember McRae wanting to keep the traditional style and look of the statesmen/Blackwoods, etc.”

      I spoke with McCray earlier today. He said it really wasn’t about the style, but more of a mutual agreement that it was time for Jerry to move on to something else and for the Dove Brothers to move ahead with another tenor.

      McCray also mentioned that beginning Sunday, Phil Barker (former Singing Americans tenor) will be filling in with the group on a temporary basis until a new tenor is named.

  3. This is not a post about Jerry Martin,but it does have to do with an Amazing Tenor.

    I was skimming through Gospel artist websites today from Bluegrass to an I hate to admit it,CCM groups. Then I thought about the fact that I have not been to David Phelps website in a while. I have a tendency to frequent a few certain groups websites if time allows every day. I usually catch up with Phelps,English,Lowry etc through the Gaither site. David Phelps site has to be one of the Best, if not the Best in Gospel music and beyond!
    I know David Phelps does not need a pitch from a lowly worm as I,but if you get a chance go to his website it Rocks!

    • In the second sentence I meant to say and,not an.

    • Not to offend or anything, but I just think his website is hilarious… I mean you call it up and there’s… “The Phelps Theater.” Puh-leeze. And your cursor literally becomes Tinker Bell’s wand, spreading computer-generated fairy dust everywhere… or perhaps you’re getting to fill in for his fairy godmother?

      (“David, I’m filling in for your fairy godmother, and with my magic wand I hereby command your Shirley-Temple do to go bye-bye.”)

      • Dude, you really shouldn’t hate on DP’s site or his hair for that matter. You don’t have to like the concept, and that’s your right. The concept is based on (and photos were actually taken at) the historic Paramount Arts Center in Ashland, Ky. Phelps is many things, including eccentric, but that makes him who he is. He happens to be among the best if not the best first tenor who has ever sung gospel music (not just my opinion, but several others including Bill Gaither). All of that aside, I’m sure he deserves more respect than “Shirley temple” comparisons (btw it’s 2010…if your gonna slam someone at least use an updated comparison) and bush league commentary on web site design. I would have expected better from a “featured” commentator on this blog. Stick to critique, not roasting someone. There are thousands of out of work comedians, you definitely would be better served to not try and break in to the business.

      • Sorry if you were offended, Nick. My comments were all in good fun, and I was not intending to “hate on” David or his website. I think he’s a great guy with a great talent. I have critiqued him seriously before, I just decided to have a little fun here. And considering all the jokes David himself has made at others’ expense, I doubt he would mind terribly. 😉

        Oh, and I’m not trying to break into the world of Christian comedy, so Ken Williams, Jeff Allen, etc. need have no worries. 🙂

      • Ah sorry, that should be Ken Davis. Was mixing him up with Kevin Williams for a moment.

  4. David, I appreciate you calling my attention to that. I have always loved the Dove Brothers. I have been following them for a few years and McRay himself has written some awesome songs. His style a few years ago was more traditional southern gospel but the latest one, “If I Knew Then” is a country song released on the southern gospel charts. The song mentions “God” once I believe and that is in McRay’s recitation. They have been leaning more and more toward country and that is fine if that is what they want to do. However I have had do many people tell me that they will not go and listen to them anymore because they feel their style is geared more toward country. I believe it was after their “Flying High” cd that McRay did an interview about their quartet and the interviewer told him that the DBQ had a great quartet but they were just doing covers of old Blackwoods and Statesmen songs. He said they needed to find their niche. Could this be their niche? I don’t know. It is working for Guy Penrod. I for one hope that the other post is right and they are going to try to stay true to traditional quartet singing. Whew…..sorry for the lengthy post. LOL. Blessings…..

    • I just listened to “If I Knew Then” this morning. (I’d heard it once from the other room after getting it free from Crossroads, but I hadn’t heard the words.) I don’t really think I’m going to keep the song.

      McCray has a fantastic voice. I love to hear him sing Southern Gospel. But if I wanted to hear country, I’d listen to Merle Haggard or George Jones. I guess if he’s after people who like country that’s fine; the song wasn’t offensive in itself. But I remember (before discovering GV) thinking that DBQ was the next great thing in SG.

      If I were his wife, I wouldn’t want him singing the song. I actually did ask myself this morning if they’d broken up, but I assume I would have heard about it. Someone who had been through that situation would have authenticity in giving a warning, but to me it pretty much felt like a tear-jerker. Or if it had offered hope – That’s what I look for in a gospel song. But there wasn’t much hope either.

      That said, “Hold On” made me fall for DBQ all over again when I heard it! And I guess it’s country enough. I just was not impressed this morning.

      • Yes, they’re still together.

  5. Can’t say i minded the DBs leaning towards the country sound but now it’s a bit too much for me. It’s not even the sound but some of the song selection.

    Best wishes to both parties. should be interesting to see who fills jerry’s place…some big shoes.

  6. Sure hate to see Jerry Martin go. The DBQ has had two of the very best tenors “ever” to sing with them. Sure hope they find someone else as exceptional as Rulapaugh or Martin.

    Where does a Jerry Martin go? My guess is he leaves SG…


  7. Good morning, y’all! (I’ve wanted to say that ever since moving to NC.)

    It looks like the comments section is awfully close to getting out of hand. Since I’ll be out for most of the day today, I’ll close comments to be on the safe side.