Gospel Music

“The Blood” – Rev. R. L. Bush & the New Swan Silvertones

“The Blood” Rev. R. L. Bush and the New Swan Silvertones From the album Live and UpClose https://store.cdbaby.com/cd/revrlbtnss By Bob Marovich During more than 80 years of singing, the Swan Silvertones quartet has remained relevant by shifting its style to keep up with the times. From rhythmic jubilee singing to church-wrecking power to sweet harmonizing to contemporary quartet, the Swans have done it all. On “The Blood,” the New Swan Silvertones, featuring the Reverend R. L. Bush, keep it old school. With nothing but a drum beat to sing to and the bass singer imitating a stand-up bass  in his ...

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2019 – 2020 35th Annual Stellar Gospel Music Award Nominees

Congratulations to all the nominees! Category #1 ARTIST OF THE YEAR – Donald Lawrence presents the Tri-City Singers; Goshen; RCA Inspiration – JJ Hairston; Miracle Worker; JamesTown Music / Entertainment One – Kirk Franklin; Long Live Love; Fo Yo Soul/ RCA/ RCA Inspiration – Tasha Cobbs Leonard; Heart. Passion. Pursuit. (Live at Passion City Church); Motown Gospel Category #2 SONG OF THE YEAR – Big; Michael McClure, Curtiss Glenn & Rodeny Turner; Black Smoke Worldwide – Deliver Me (This Is My Exodus); Donald Lawrence, William Stokes, Marshon Lewis, Robert Woolridge & Desmond Davis; RCA Inspiration – Love Theory; Kirk Franklin; ...

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JGM Pick of the Week: January 20, 2020

“I’ll Never Stop Praising the Lord”Northern Delaware Chapter GMWA Recording ChoirEnon Music Group (single release date: November 15, 2019) By Bob Marovich With “I’ll Never Stop Praising the Lord,” the Northern Delaware Chapter Recording Choir of the Gospel Music Workshop of America continues to eke every utility from its 2016 album God Be Glorified. Whether intentional or not, Aurelius Palmer’s rollicking composition evokes Ricky Dillard and New G’s 1991 smash “More Abundantly” in its relentlessly optimistic tempo, its cascading choral parts, and its use of the phrase “He gave me life more abundantly.” The full-throated thunderous praise of the choir ...

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Renee Spearman – I Love Him

Renee Spearman I Love Him JDI Records (release date: September 27, 2019) By Bob Marovich The Stellar-nominated songstress Renee Spearman, formerly one-half of the contemporary gospel duo Renee Spearman and Prez, has been working on her own for quite some time. Her first new solo album in seven years, I Love Him, has a battery of producers, a choir directed by Tony Jones, strings, and brass. All but one of the album’s nine selections come from Spearman’s pen. That one, the relaxed “Having You There,” is by David Curry Jr. of the Mississippi Mass Choir. While the current single, featuring ...

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JGM Pick of the Week: January 13, 2020

“Mighty Long Way”Pastor David Wright & New York Fellowship ChoirFeat. Keith “Wonderboy” JohnsonGodfather Records (release date: November 26, 2019) By Bob Marovich Choir meets quartet on this rollicking neo-traditional piece, written by Pastor David Wright of New York’s famous Wright Family. It features gut-busting shouts by quartet maven and vocalist Keith “Wonderboy” Johnson, all to the full-throated singing of the New York Fellowship Choir. Complete with an old school vamp, the song marvels about how far God has brought us—unmeasurable, perhaps, but certainly from a mighty long way—and how he put us on “straight street.” If choirs and quartets sadly ...

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JGM’s The Best of 2019

By Bob Marovich As is our custom for this time of year, the Journal of Gospel Music presents its “best of” lists in the category of CDs, songs, and historical releases. The recordings were not chosen as “best of” based on sales, chart status, promotion, voting, fan popularity, number of likes or retweets, committee decisions, throwing darts, reading tea leaves, arm twisting, or anything other than 1) JGM was serviced with the music for review and 2) JGM believes they best represented gospel music in 2019 in terms of overall music quality. Artists whose music does not appear here: please ...

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RIP: Rev. Maceo Woods, Pastor, Organist, Founder of “Gospel Supreme” Musical

By Bob Marovich The Journal of Gospel Music was saddened to learn of the passing of the Reverend Maceo Woods today. Maceo Len Woods was born April 23, 1932, to Fred and Rosa Anna Anderson Woods, who migrated from Mississippi to Morgan Park. By age twelve, Maceo was serving as organist for Mount Calvary Baptist Church in Morgan Park, where his family was a member. Initially drawn to a career in medicine, Woods became more interested in music. Woods organized his first singing group, the Maceo Woods Male Chorus, at Mt. Calvary. Woods’ godfather, Eugene Smith of the Roberta Martin ...

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Reba Rambo – Lady

Reba Rambo Lady Provident Label Group / Sony Music (re-release date: December 13, 2019) By Bob Marovich Provident Label Group / Sony Music has just made a beloved recording by Christian singer Reba Rambo available once again, digitally remastered. By 1977, when she released her fifth solo recording, Lady, on Greentree Records, Reba Rambo, the daughter of gospel singers Buck and Dottie Rambo and a member of the Singing Rambos, had been in and out of recording studios for the better part of a decade. Despite initial hesitancy by Reba’s record company to put her solo album out, Lady earned ...

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RIP: Catherine Austin Baymon, Chicago Gospel Singer

By Bob Marovich MonaLisa Brown informed the Journal of Gospel Music that Ms. Catherine Austin Baymon, a longtime gospel vocalist with Chicago’s Mt. Pisgah Missionary Baptist Church, passed away on Sunday, January 5, 2020. Born in Canton, Mississippi, Catherine moved to Chicago with her mother when she was about to enter high school. She graduated from Du Sable High School and worked for many years as a general accountant at Kraft Foods as well as for Blue Cross Blue Shield of Illinois. She joined Mt. Pisgah Baptist Church on June 27, 1956, where gospel pioneer Roberta Martin was in charge ...

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“Show Me” – Ms. Ruby

“Show Me” Ms. Ruby ARTX Records (release date: October 28, 2019) By Bob Marovich Written and sung out of heartbreak over the loss of her only son, “Show Me” gives Ruby Settles, aka Ms. Ruby, a chance to shout her troubles over. It’s a sung prayer that moves from gently supplicant (but with a touch of suppressed anger) to passionate shouting as Ms. Ruby seeks strength in the midst of her darkest hour. By the end, after she hears “His voice” giving her the direction she seeks, you get the sense that she is on her way to better days. ...

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