Live – Dove Brothers

The Southern Gospel music year revolves around the National Quartet Convention. More new albums are released during this time period than any other time of the year. The Dove Brothers happen to be one of those artists with a new album release.

Live featuring the Dove Brothers and the Dove Brothers Band officially hits retail on 09/20/11. Recorded in Fayetteville, NC, this album is the first live recording in the Dove Brothers’ 15-year history.

This new recording includes three new songs plus several tunes the Dove Brothers have released previously on studio recordings. They’ve also included the classic “Were You There” featuring David Hester singing in the style of Tennessee Ernie Ford and an instrumental version of “There Is Power In The Blood.”

Southern Gospel Views from the Back Row (Steve Eaton) and MusicScribe (David Bruce Murray) will determine if this Dove Brothers effort is a must buy. This collaborative review offers likes and dislikes from the two of us and then gives a definitive yes or no on whether the album is a ‘must buy’.


  • Why hasn’t the Dove Brothers recorded a live album before now? This recording reminded of the great live albums recorded by the Dixie Echoes, Oak Ridge Boys and Thrasher Brothers in the 1970’s.
  • The country sound the Dove Brothers adopted several years ago works well on a live recording. Doing the entire concert with a live band also enhanced the performance. I don’t believe I heard any tracks being used during the performance.
  • It is the previously recorded songs that shine on Live. “I Recall” (McCray Dove) and “Shout It Out” (Vern Sullivan) on this live recording requires a couple hits of the repeat button.
  • McCray is the writer of the album’s three new songs; “He Made A Change In Me”, “Still Singing The Song” and “We Gotta Love”. The latter of the three happens to be the first single.
  • New tenor Jonathan Price also turns in some great singing on this effort, most notably “My Soul Has Been Set Free”.


  • I’ll echo Steve’s point about Jonathan Price’s turn on “My Soul Has Been Set Free.” Price does not make high tenor singing sound easy like Brian Free or his predecessor, Jerry Martin. On this song, he makes it sound like he’s working extra hard to make it sound just as thrilling as he possibly can. Remember Ernie Phillips with the Kingsmen? Of course, the difference in Price’s case is that McCray Dove isn’t pushing him so hard that it’s killing his voice on every song ending.
  • The Dove Brothers Band shines on “There Is Power In The Blood” with just enough of a frenetic quality to let you know it’s live.
  • “Shout It Out” has a perfect build-up that gets the crowd excited before the first note is sung. You might get a similar effect with another emcee introducing the song, but you can’t support an introduction of a song as effectively with a track. Price steps in for the last half of the song to “bring home the bacon.”


  • Way too much talking. As great a feel as this live album has, the long periods of talking between several songs takes away from making this one of the Dove Brothers best.
  • Did I mention, too much talking. This is an oddity. In concert, the Dove Brothers normally spend the bulk of their time moving from one song to the next.


  • I agree there is too much talking. To give you an idea, this CD takes an hour to present just ten songs. Some of the extended song introductions won’t bear up to repeat listening. I wish they’d reduced the intros by about half and included at least one more song. That being said, I do like this a lot better than so many fake “live” CDs that just have song/dubbed applause/song/dubbed applause with little (if any) set up from an emcee.
  • When I rip this CD to MP3 format and listen later with my portable device set to “shuffle,” what I’m going to hear is a Dove Brothers song followed by the introduction for a different Dove Brothers song followed by some random song by another artist. I don’t want that. Start the track with the introduction followed by the song that goes with it! This isn’t just a reflection on this CD, by the way. Every live CD I’ve ever heard does this. It’s bad enough for the individual consumer’s use, but what’s sad is when the single is played on radio in this fashion.


  • YES – With the exception of the talking, this first live recording from the Dove Brothers gives the listener exactly what you would get from the group in a live concert setting.


  • YES – I like real live recordings, and I’m a long-time Dove Brothers fan. All in all, this is the sort of CD I want in my collection.The Dove Brothers Band isn’t just some idea that was put together for this recording on one night. They travel with the group and perform at all of their shows. While I’ll be surprised if this CD generates any career defining hit songs for the Dove Brothers, it’s always exciting to watch a group venture into a territory they haven’t covered before. Live isn’t quite a home run, but it’s a solid triple. That ain’t bad for the first time at bat.

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