Judge Not, the debut CD from Omaha, Nebraska-based quartet Second Chance (Higher Praise Records), is slated for release on November 26, 2004. The project’s magnum opus is a mostly a cappella rendition of “Lord’s Prayer.” It sounds strikingly similar to the beautiful arrangement that Rev. Claude Jeter and the Swan Silvertones gave the prayer in 1956 (Vee Jay 232).
Second Chance member Courtney Jackson tells The Black Gospel Blog that the resemblance between the two recordings is not entirely coincidental, as the quartet based its arrangement on one Jackson learned from Willie Donald when both were members of the Omaha Traveleers. According to Jackson, Willie Donald’s quartet resume included membership in the Bright Stars and Julius Cheeks’ Four Knights, so he was well versed in the traditional quartet repertory and would have been familiar with the Swan’s version.
The “Lord’s Prayer” you hear on Judge Not, therefore, has a prominent parentage, courtesy of the Swan Silvertones and Omaha Traveleers, while it incorporates more modern quartet vocal techniques, courtesy of Second Chance.
Jackson adds that Second Chance – Barry Dancer, Sherwin Hattix, David Wilson, Jesse Wallace, Andrew Brookins, and James White – hopes to include more traditional material on their sophomore release, but are looking first to establish their voice in gospel music through Judge Not, which includes mostly original compositions.