2013 NQC – Monday Night Recap

Sneed FamilyThe 2013 National Quartet Convention is under way and night one is now complete.  Another year to ‘arm chair quarterback’ the event from my home (watching via webcast).  As I have done in the past, I will offer hits and misses of each night.  Also the comments section is open to allow you to offer your own insights in to each evening of the 2013 NQC.

  • I thought the first night of NQC 2013 was fairly uneventful.  There were several strong sets early in the evening.
  • The first was the Lesters.  They were sounding great as an all male trio.  This was the first time for me to hear them in that vocal configuration.  Their blend was exceptional.
  • The Sneed Family hit a home run by performing with a live band.  This group is about 40 years too late.  The set they performed this evening with a live band would have made them a huge hit in the 1970’s.  Here ‘s hoping listeners in 2013 are brave enough to give group’s that actually use live music some love.
  • Excellent choice for the NQC board to choose the Penny Loafers for the a cappella moments this year.  While I miss Sisters, the Penny Loafers were great.
  • We got standard fare from the Booth Brothers, Collingsworth Family, Greater Vision, Hoppers and Triumphant Quartet.  While none of the sets were horrible, they didn’t provide any monster (I’ll be talking about that tomorrow) type performance.
  • Of the showcase artists that made their way on to the main stage tonight, I thought Sherry Anne’s performance of “God On The Mountain” stood out.
  • The NQC webcast is great in terms of picture quality (definitely HD) and sound this year, but on another note…

  • Did anyone else have problems with the webcast cutting out throughout the entire evening?  Early on the webcast was down for over a half hour.  Here’s hoping these kinks get worked out as the week progresses.
  • Performances that seemed to fall flat (at least from viewing it via webcam), in order of appearance are as follows:  Browns (“A Place In The Choir”), Squire Parsons (“Go Out With A Shout”) and Ivan Parker (“Midnight Cry”).


**Now to crown the best of the night:

Best single song performances (in order of appearance):  (1) “My Lord Will Lead Me Home” – Lesters  (2) “More To Go To Heaven For” – Sneed Family  (3) “A Cappella Medley” – Penny Loafers  (4) “Empty Me Lord” – Primitive Quartet  (5) “The Blood Of Jesus” – Collingsworth Family  (6) “He Didn’t Just Carry The Cross” – Hoppers  (7) “I’m Free” – Booth Brothers

Best Set of the Night:  For night one, it was a toss-up between the Lesters and the Sneed Family.  The use of a live band gave the edge and the set of the night to the Sneed Family.

What say ye?  Discuss amongst yourselves your favorites of night one of the 2013 NQC.


8 thoughts on “2013 NQC – Monday Night Recap

  1. I am in Louisville. In Freedom Hall, the program moved along about as smoothly as I have ever seen it go on a Monday night. My hat is off the NQC crew for a job well done. I noticed a couple of mic issues, but nothing major. The mixes were generally good, except for one of the showcase winners who used one condenser mic.

    Most of the big groups did their standard stuff, as Steve mentioned.

    A big highlight for me was “I Know A Man Who Can” by Greater Vision. I’ve heard them do it several times since the return of Chris Allman, but I think this may have been the first time I heard them do it with Stan Whitmire at the keys and Rodney Griffin playing bass guitar. That live element made a difference.

    I guess I most enjoyed the groups that Steve thought were average…the Booths, Triumphant, Greater Vision and the Collingsworth Family really stood out to me. The Hoppers’

    I missed both of the groups Steve indicated were highlights for him.

    I questioned one of the song choices by Triumphant, but the crowd seemed to disagree with me. “He Is” always seems to get a response. I was just surprised they chose to stage it within the time frame of such a limited set.

    Squire’s set was definitely a highlight for me. I enjoyed the song Steve thought was a miss.

    Ivan was quite pitchy, but the people here didn’t seem to care. They clapped in response to “Midnight Cry” as he sang the first few familiar lines.

    Comparing Steve’s impressions with my own as I saw it in person just proves that viewing an event through two different “lenses,” if you will, can result in two completely different opinions. If I had watched the webcast, I expect we would be closer to agreeing, because I can see how some of the things that got the crowd fired up might not have played out so well on the webcast…Claude Hopper was late getting to the stage twice, for example. Those watching the webcast probably couldn’t see people in the crowd cheering when he finally showed up and laughing about it. If I’d been watching the webcast, I’d probably wonder why the confusion, but in person, it was more of a non-issue.

    I guess-timated there were probably 6000 in Freedom Hall at any given time, and most stayed until the finale. It was over by 11:00 PM.

    One thing that was definitely different this year is a general lack of interest in the Exhibit Hall. When I went out to the Exhibit Hall from 6:15 to 8:00 PM or so, I noticed that quite a few booths had product on display (or covered up with a tarp), but most were unmanned…more importantly, very few people other than artists were in the Exhibit Hall except those eating in the food court or walking through it to get to the food court.

    I spoke with several people in the Exhibit Hall: Rose Gilley, Jerry Kelso, His Mercies, Eric Bennett, Matt Felts, Brandon Reese, Jonathan Sawrie, Scotty Inman, Les Butler briefly and a few more.

    As an aside…two different people (Les Butler was one of them), asked me if the NC State shirt I was wearing was a South Carolina Gamecocks shirt.


    1. The Booth Brothers, Collingsworth Family, Greater Vision, Hoppers and Triumphant Quartet sets were filled mostly with material that I’ve heard 100 times before. When watching via webcast, nothing stood out. Don’t get me wrong the sets were good, but I never had a, ‘I’m going to remember that performance’ type reaction.

      On the other hand, the Lesters and Sneed Family provided something fresh/different in their sets that I did remember when I was putting my thoughts together to do the recap.

      And, I know that if I was in attendance my reactions would be different than how I am reacting via webcast. It is good that you’re there to provide the live reaction.

  2. I am disappointed in the ” live” simulcast on Roku… It was like watching highlights… To me tho, by far , of what I saw was Collingsworth kids quartet and the trio with Kim Hopper, Taranda Greene, and Kim Collingsworth … Neither of u mentioned that… Phenomenal !!!!

  3. A few thoughts on watching the webcast:

    I thought that the video quality was much better and I enjoyed the interface better.

    I really liked the full band of the Sneed Family. It looked like they “borrowed” musicians Corey Pearson from the Diplomats and the steel player from the inspirations. I could be wrong though.

    I enjoy the browns singing, but it seemed like they were doing too many gimmicks tonight. Too much violin stuff for my taste.

    One cool moment of the night was when the Providence Quartet brought up Bill Shivers to sing “I’m Going There”. I didn’t know bill wrote that song. It was a great moment.

    I missed alot of the webcast, but am anxious to watch the archive, which i hope they post soon.

  4. I thought I was… I clicked on watch live, main stage…???? If I set it up wrong I sincerely apologize to you, the NQC , and to Roku…will try it again and watch it on ” On Demand”…

  5. I too, thought the Sneed Family did extremely well. I spoke with them at great length. They are doing so many things well during this season: #1–The have developed a HUGE regional following. Kathy Crabb once said to me, “You’ll never be a National Group until you develop a regional following; and you’ll never develop a regional following until you have a local following.” The Sneed family has developed a huge local and regional following. For goodness sakes, they chartered several buses and brought 400 “regional” folks with them. Not to mention the buses they charter for other conerts. #2–The are promoting several concerts with National groups in their are. #3–The are promoting this whole Lorretta Lynn concert thingy with major National groups on the program.

    The only thing they are really lacking (and I spoke to daddy Sneed about this) is original material. If they can get some writers to pitch to them, that would greatly help. But hey, they are doing great with what they are working with. The “Tribute to Naomi Sego” CD is excellent. New arrangements, etc… Also on their own label, the new CD has a remake of the old SInging Americans song, “I Want To Make Heaven My Home” that is just rock solid. Personally, I would single that song to radio.

    On top of all of this, they are just super-nice, humble, people. Give them a listen, you’ll be pleasantly surprised.

    I think they are positioning themselves for success. — Rick

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