NQC Highlights #4
1. Brian Free is an awkward congregational leader.
2. Collingsworth kids can sing. Very talented family. They keep getting better each time I hear them (minus some bad endings). I believe it to be a highly plausible thing for them to be a big deal in a few years, as the younger kids began to grow into their voices, at least in the eye of the public’s sake. They’re two boys short of a Brady Bunch, and with the beloved exception of the mother, the Brady’s are in mind. So far, their best set of the week.
3. Here’s the thing about the Pfeifers. It’s something different. And being from Kentucky, it is justified they are there.
4. Let’s find a new song to see when groups get together besides “When I Wake Up To Sleep No More”.
5. Wasn’t The Kingsmen’s “When My Feet Touch The Streets of Gold” enough for one time? I truly wasn’t expecting another go at it. And then another on the Habedank tune. I do like the new songs.
6. Kingdom Heirs wasted a lot of time tonight with the Kreis/Steve comedy attempt on Abbott/Costello.
7. I like to see Jeff Chapman’s nostrils flare up on the low notes. Might be his secret. I may try it.
8. L5. Nothing fancy. Solid, quartet music. It’s neat to see Gus point his finger UP when his note is progressing UP and point it DOWN when his note is progressing DOWN. They sang two songs in a row about “change”. Intended to poke fun at Gold City? Their best performance of the night though, was the almost replica of “There’s Something About That Name” with a simple piano. That was worth the set.
9. This Lauren Talley marriage might just work out. Brian Alvey sounded alright. I think he just might add a refreshing new dynamic to their sound and style. It took me a few times to hear it all and soak it all in, but that’s the conclusion I believe I’ve come to.
10. Second contest winner, “Calvary’s Voice”, I think… Who’s judging these things? My rural church quartet would seriously be a winner here. Or at the very least, pick a better song. I’m sure it took a lot of guts to do that.
11. It doesn’t get any better than when Dustin Sweatman does his “Gambit” from X-Men impersonation. I had no doubt that “Statue of Liberty” would be the last choice. They’ve mastered the song, I believe. If you watch closely, when someone is a little off, if Trammell doesn’t have a bass guitar strapped around him, he’ll give a lil’ pinch under their arm, pointing them to right note.
12. This needs a point of its own in regards to Patriotic songs at NQC. We are all cornered now, and I mean that in a good way. With NQC happening in September year after year, we will always be honoring 9/11. Is there a better place to do it with a bunch of old Bible-thumpin’ conservatives. I think not. And amen.
13. Wow…The Isaacs never cease to amaze me. A fresh type of “new-grass” with complex harmonies, live, real and acoustic music and innovative musical arrangements is just the kind of thing that stirs my soul. I would be the first to admit Ben Isaacs doesn’t possess my favorite voice, but it’s serviceable, and his ear and sense of timing is underestimated. And ole Sonya was able to dye that hair. No bad roots. (They strongly advise you to do that when you’re pregnant, by the way).
14. When they sang that song for their mom, and the signs begin hitting the stage and I saw Ray Dean Reese, I began to tear up. At first, I wanted to toss it off as an emotional ploy, until Reese walked up on stage. The reality hit me that they are singing about the one thing that can set them free and heal them from sickness. The Gospel. That song was about far more than cancer. The personal response of a family going through it with the one whom they love, stricken with cancer. Christ is our source of strength in that pain. It took a Kingsmen bass singer to help me see it.
15. EHSS finally introduced a couple of new songs and I actually liked them. So that’s a big step in the right direction. Of course, I enjoyed the George Younce and Cats tributes, but some original material helps. Ian Owens blends pretty well. He has an odd or rather strange voice doing his solos, but he has some range and that maximizes the different avenues EHSS may choose to go. For me though, the highlight was Doug Anderson’s solo. Pure and simple, complete with a stool. The higher Devin’s spikes get, the more I think it helps the soul factor in his voice. It was kind of amazing to hear an almost flawless version of “O What A Savior” and a bunch of flat notes on the last one “Glory To God In The Highest”. But he brought some power to the table…guess that’s what happens as you age. Could’ve done without the hot pink though.
16. Omega. I heard somebody say “they might be the next EHSS.” That’s actually a real comment I heard. Better than the last group anyways. The one kid had some range, eh?
17. Switched gears a little during the Dixie Echoes set. Their new bass singer, Mike Jennings is pretty good though. Not Pat Barker. But if you like the Dixie Echoes, you’ll like this collection of guys.
18. Got other things to do right now.
19. Now, back to the GVB Reunion. There is no doubt that Gaither finds some of the most talented men in the history of gospel music. It is no coincidence that the artists in the building all find their way to get to that. And Larnelle Harris beasted it this afternoon. Michael English is sounding great, and sounds like his voice has healed. And everyone pays attention when Phelps and Hampton do their thing. Another lovely treats was Marshall Hall singing “When I Cry”. Buddy Mullins looks like he has a fun time being there. Bill really gave everybody a spotlight and the other guys stepped back and watched.
20. I love these reunions and this was a clear highlight, but I wonder if we’re going to run out of enough of notable ones. Next year, who can we get? For those still alive anyways… Florida Boys? Maybe another Gold City reunion and expand the participants? If we did a Kingdom Heirs reunion, there might not be many participants. Or maybe an Imperials reunion? A lot of them are still alive. What would it to take to fill the auditorium and get all the other artists excited?