Now part 2 of our retro spotlight on the year 1996. Enjoy!
Brian Free & Assurance started hitting their stride as a quartet releasing 4 God So Loved in 1996. The title track has become a classic song for the group. Another hit song from that recording was the song “Jesus Came Out Alive”.
The Booth Brothers were just getting their recording career started 15 years ago. One of the first albums to come out by the group was the 1996 effort Praise God Anyhow. Neil Enloe, of Couriers fame, wrote a song that I enjoyed during this time period titled “Go Ahead And Shout”.
Another group getting their recording career started was the Crabb Family. This family would go on to be one of the biggest family group’s in Southern Gospel history. Their 1996 recording Still Holdin’ On garnered the group their first 3 top ten hits. One of those being the title track “Still Holdin’ On”.
Gold City began their return to greatness among Southern Gospel quartets with the line up of Parrack, Wilburn, Trammell and Riley. The 1996 recording Preparing The Way was the first for this particular line-up. One of the biggest songs from that recording was “He’s Still On The Throne”.
Greater Vision was celebrating their 5th anniversary as a group by the time 1996 rolled around. In addition to their major label release, the group also released The Church Hymnal Series – Volume One. This popular series would generate three additional volumes. Listen to the classic “Heaven’s Jubilee”.
The McGruders were nearing the end of their successful run by the time 1996 rolled around. The group had recording success from about 1989 to 1994 releasing one of Southern Gospel’s all time best live recordings in 1990; Come Fly. In 1996 the group released their last live album/video titled Plugged In Live. Listen to “The Finish Line”.
In an era where live albums were still being released, the Perrys Center Stage Live also came out in 1996. The Perrys were still traveling as a mixed quartet during this time period with both the alto and soprano female vocal parts. Mike Bowling was also traveling with the group at this time. “Power In Prayer” featured Libbi and was one of the strongest songs on the recording.
To close out our look at 1996 is the Steeles. A family group that hit the scene in 1994 with instant radio success. That radio success eventually translated to concert success. The 1996 album We Want America Back became a landmark recording for the group. It went on to win the Singing News fan award for album of the year in 1997. Listen to “Nothing To Lose”.