- Album – Happy People
- Artist – Ernie Haase + Signature Sound
- Label – Stow Town Records
- Style – Progressive, Traditional
- Release Date – 05/05/15
- Available For Digital Download? – Yes (iTunes/Spotify)
Today finds one of two new releases from Ernie Haase + Signature Sound. The new Southern Gospel recording is Happy People.
The release of both new albums were overshadowed by the announcement that original baritone vocalist, Doug Anderson would be departing the group in June to focus on a solo career.
Ernie Haase + Signature Sound used the same musical formula utilized on the last several recordings. Mixing new songs while refurbishing older songs to make them sound new. After several listens, I believe Happy People surpasses Glorious Day and ranks up there with Here We Are Again.
- Devin McGlamery knocks it out of the ballpark with the big Southern Gospel power ballad; “Thank You For Saving Me”. This Gaither Vocal Band big closing concert number style song is done perfectly by the group. I believe this will end up one of the best recorded Southern Gospel songs of 2015. A must listen!
- Speaking of refurbishing older songs and making them sound brand new, the group takes a Vep Ellis rare classic. “Joshua Led God’s Children” is a great classic quartet up-tempo number that found the repeat button. The group also does a good job on a song that is recorded quite a bit when talking about Southern Gospel quartet classics; “One Of These Mornings”.
- The title track and first radio single from the album is an Imperials-esque style tune; “Happy People”. The listener can hear the Imperials recording this song in the late 1970’s. The groovy musical track given to the song only adds to that 1970’s vibe.
- Doug and Ernie trade verses on another Southern Gospel must listen; the ballad “Jesus Changed Everything”. Instead of going with the big power production heard on “Thank You For Saving Me”, the group decided to scale this one back a bit.
- I also enjoyed the mid-tempo Ernie feature, “Let Your Love Light Shine”. This song is reminiscent of what you would have heard on country radio in the 1980’s.
- I can’t leave this review without mentioning the Ernie Haase/Dianne Wilkinson collab, “Angels Everywhere”. I can hear the Cathedrals performing this particular number. One would expect nothing less when getting Ernie Haase and Dianne Wilkinson together.
- Strongest songs included in order: “Thank You For Saving Me”, “Joshua Led God’s Children”, “Jesus Changed Everything”, “Let Your Love Light Shine”, “Happy People”, “Angels Everywhere”, “One Of These Mornings” and “I Do Believe”.
- There was an easy listening style song near the end of the recording that tended to fall flat and throw off the pace of the recording; the song, “It’s Good To See The Sun”.
- There was also a hard-driving country-style tune, “Love Walked In”, that tended to stretch Doug’s vocal a bit too far.
- Weakest songs included in order: “It’s Good To See The Sun” and “Love Walked In”.
I believe Ernie Haase + Signature Sound just released the best Southern Gospel quartet album of 2015 thus far. Happy People is a step above their previous effort Glorious Day. Fans of the group will easily add this to their collections. This is the type recording that even fair weather listeners of the group will want to own. The group could easily have two to three #1 songs from this recording, that is if they choose the right songs for radio.
SONG/Featured Vocalist – Songwriter: 1. “One Of These Mornings”/Ensemble – Herbert Brewster 2. “Happy People“/Ensemble – Ernie Haase, Wayne Haun, Joel Lindsey 3. “Thank You For Saving Me”/Devin – Michael Farren, Greg Sykes 4. “Love Walked In”/Doug – Jeffrey Bumgardner, Wayne Haun 5. “Jesus Changed Everything”/Doug; Ernie – Ernie Haase, Wayne Haun, Joel Lindsey 6. “Let Your Love Light Shine”/Ernie – Rachel McCutcheon 7. “Angels Everywhere”/Ensemble – Ernie Haase, Dianne Wilkinson 8. “It’s Good To See The Sun”/Ensemble – Ernie Haase, Wayne Haun, Joel Lindsey 9. “Joshua Led God’s Children”/Doug – Vep Ellis 10. “A Soldier Fighting To Go Home”/Paul; Doug – Ernie Haase, David Pike 11. “I Do Believe”/Doug – Gloria Gaither, William Gaither