Interview with Daniel J. Mount

We had the opportunity to interview Daniel J. Mount, editor of SouthernGospelBlog.com, at our home on November 3rd, 2012.  

Join us for a fun “round-table” discussion with Daniel, in which we talked about everything from the beginnings of Southern Gospel Blog to which President had the biggest frown.  Also, don’t miss the hilarious blooper reel!

Thanks Daniel for letting us interview you, and for your patience as we had a great time laughing with you!

– Sam, Jayme, and Caleb Garms

Here’s the link to the video: http://youtu.be/eq3Sqrt3iBo

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Video of Matt Fouch with Legacy Five

At this year’s National Quartet Convention, I saw new Legacy Five bass singer Matt Fouch bring the house down with several solid solos. Ever since, I’ve been watching for a video that begins to capture why he is winning fans over as quickly as he is. Here’s one, posted yesterday:

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Video of Paul Harkey with Signature Sound

Yes, personnel changes happen all the time in our genre, but it’s stating the obvious to note that some arouse more interest than others. Paul Harkey’s move to Ernie Haase and Signature Sound has aroused enough interest that it is worth passing along this ten-minute video of highlights from his first night with the group (hat tip, Aaron):

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What to Do When You Cannot Attend NQC

While some of you are out meetin’ and greetin’ at the National Quartet Convention, some of us are hanging around home, trying to “occupy” our time.  Here are a few things we found to do this week…

What to Do When You Can’t Attend NQC

[youtube http://youtu.be/VqQIAc5mq9E]

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Video from Stephen Hill’s Homegoing Service

Stephen Hill passed away suddenly on Sunday, August 6th. His memorial / home going services was eight days later, on Monday, August 13th. Friends, family, and fellow Southern Gospel artists gathered to commemorate his life.

At the service, Sisters sang the song he closed his final concert with, “It is Well.” This isn’t just worth watching because of the context; this rendition is a work of art on its own merits. The apparently effortless key changes, airtight unison lines, and lush cascading harmonies—all achieved without the help of tracks or stacks—are part of why Sisters’ fellow performers have such a high respect for their abilities.

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Daystar posts Gospel Music Showcase archives

Daystar’s Gospel Music Showcase television series features about twenty of Southern Gospel’s most popular groups, during their main-stage appearances at the National Quartet Convention. Daystar has made thirteen episodes from this series available for free, on demand, here. It’s a great resource for all of us who can’t make it out to concerts quite as often as we would like (which is to say, all of us except SGConcerts’ DinanaSN!)

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Concert Review: The Ball Brothers with Chad McCloskey (Buffalo, MN)

Despite a bus tire exploding, a car not starting, and a “late” leave time, our family was able to attend a Ball Brothers’ concert this past Sunday evening (May 6th, 2012) in Buffalo, Minnesota during Chad McCloskey’s second full weekend with the group.

When the Ball Brothers ran up on stage, immediately, the crowd was interested in this exciting group of five young men. As they opened with their signature “do-dos” on “Happy Am I”, we were instantly impressed with their cohesive blend. With each note precise and solid, the Ball Brothers have probably the strongest group blend we have heard live. And with their new vocalists, Andy Tharp and Chad McCloskey, they are on top of their game. They easily master intricate harmonies and send them hurling into the audience as a unifed wall.

Daniel Ball’s robust lead vocals provide a rich, full sound to the group, and Andrew Ball’s clear, silky tenor fuses their distinctive blend. Both of the brothers’ voices have matured since we first heard them on tour with Ernie Haase and Signature Sound in 2006, and they are some of the most polished vocalists in our genre.

Andy Tharp, who recently replaced Stephen Ball as baritone, has a very reliable, resonant voice and unassumingly adds greatly to their harmonies. The Ball Brothers made a fine choice for a new baritone!  Andy does well adding a country twang to his voice, as on “Walking in Jerusalem” and “I’ve Been Redeemed”.  

At 22 years old, the newest member, Chad McCloskey, has an exceptional voice and range. He sang “Beulah Land” with his own creative improvisations, and held down the low parts of the rest of the songs well.  He is a great addition to the group!  

Cody McVey, formerly of the Kingsmen Quartet, is a talented piano player and it was fun to observe his technique.

Enthusiastically diverse, the group offers a broad selection of music, covering their style of Southern Gospel, contemporary, jazz, country, bluegrass, and even a touch of classical. But each song was refreshing and filled with the message of Jesus Christ.  Their ending song of the concert, “It’s About the Cross”, defines their ministry and message, and they passionately deliver their now popular song with power.  (See below for a video.)

A particular highlight was listening to the story of their beginnings, which they shared candidly while sitting on the church’s stools (theirs weren’t as nice, supposedly). They also paid tribute to the Cathedral Quartet by singing “Plan of Salvation”, which was neat for our family to experience, as we were never privileged to hear the famous quartet share this touching song live. Daniel Ball carried the solo well and Cody McVey’s piano playing recalled Roger Bennett’s familar piano arrangement.  Also, they made a familiar Cathedrals’ song “Glory Train” their own, adding a humorous twist.  (See video below.) 

In 2006, when we first saw the Ball Brothers, Ben told one of the brothers that when they had their first stand-alone concert in Minnesota, we would be there. Amazingly, God graciously allowed this to happen, and are we glad to have been able to attend! The promoter told us that many people wanted the Ball Brothers back, and we’d encourage any promoter to have this 2011 Horizon Group of the Year at their church or venue.

Here’s a video of assorted song clips from the night:

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vcUz1AE9RzM&w=560&h=315]

 

“It’s About the Cross”

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rLinkohiPRg&w=560&h=315]

 

“Ride that Glory Train”

[youtube http://youtu.be/Tx_xYCeIFRI&w=560&h=315]

 

 

To read a list of songs from the concert, click “More”.  

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The Original “Get Away Jordan”

Several recordings of “Get Away Jordan” don’t credit the song’s writer, just listing it as “traditional.” The song was introduced by Dorothy Love Coates and the Gospel Harmonettes in the mid-1950s, and BMI’s song repertory credits Coates as the song’s writer.

Ever wonder how the writer of a song like this might have interpreted it?

Wonder no more.

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