This week’s ten on ten feature highlights the recording career of Karen Peck & New River. Karen has been getting quite a bit of media attention recently with her appearance in the film ‘Joyful Noise’. Karen rose to prominence after joining the Rex Nelon Singers in the early ’80′s. It was 1991 when Karen began New River with sister Susan Jackson. That same year the group released their first album.
Since that debut recording, Karen Peck & New River has just over 20 recordings in their discography. The group is consistently one of the top trios touring the Southern Gospel circuit.
Karen Peck & New River’s top ten albums are:
- A Taste Of Grace (2000)
- Unlimited (1995)
- Journey Of Joy (2007)
- Restoration (1992)
- Reach Out (2011)
- For His Glory (2003)
- Triumph (2001)
- Ephesians One (2008)
- Daddy’s Home (1993)
- Turn It Loose (1999)
- The group’s biggest song, “Four Days Late”, is found on New River’s biggest album. The 2000 release A Taste Of Grace is the pinnacle in the group’s discography.
- The 1995 effort, Unlimited, ranks #2 among the best Karen Peck & New River albums. The group’s first #1 song, “God Likes To Work”, was found on this recording. The album was also anchored by “Ten Thousand Angels Cried”, “I Called And You Answered”, “I’m Gonna Fly Away” and “Go Rest High On That Mountain”.
- Early albums also found a home among the group’s ten best. The 1992 sophomore release, Restoration ranks highest at #4, while the 1993 recording Daddy’s Home ranks 9th. Early favorite songs “When Jesus Passes By”, “God Still Answers Prayers”, “Rain And Shine”, “Daddy’s Home” and “Last Mile Running” were found on these two recordings.
- When Karen Peck & New River hit the scene they toured with a full live band. One of the greatest bands to ever tour in Southern Gospel music. Something that I definitely miss when seeing the group in concert.
- The group’s most recent effort, Reach Out, was strong enough to land at #5 among the group’s best recordings. Having “On The Banks Of The Promised Land” on the recording was a huge factor but the group should be proud of the entire strength of the recording.
- While Karen and Susan have been mainstays since the beginning, the male vocalist in the trio has seen a who’s who come through. David White, Eric Morris, John Darin Rowsey, Devin McGlamery and Jeff Hawes among others have all spent some time with Karen Peck & New River.
- In addition to songs already listed, Karen Peck & New River have given the Southern Gospel listener songs such as “Bend In The River”, “Hold Me While I Cry”, “I Wanna Know How It Feels”, “I Want To Thank You”, “Last Night”, “Special Love”, “That’s Why They Call It Grace”, “The Truth Is” and “Whispered Prayers”.
- The forgotten gem in the group’s discography is their 2003 release For His Glory. This album has everything that has made this trio popular.
- The album that should be forgotten in the group’s discography is the 2004 collection of previously recorded songs; Faith, Hope and Love.
- Karen Peck & New River has created a sound that is uniquely their own. While the listener is at a place where they know what to expect from a KPNR recording, the strength of song selection keeps each new release one of the top Southern Gospel albums released in any given year.
***NEXT UP ON TEN ON TEN: OAK RIDGE BOYS***