Ordinary People: Lesters

lesters2016ordinaryGRADE:  B

  • Album – Ordinary People
  • Artist – Lesters
  • Label – Custom
  • Style – Progressive
  • Release Date – 07/29/16
  • Available For Digital Download? – No

SYNOPSIS:

Today we take a look at the latest album from the Lesters; Ordinary People.  The album has been available since July 29th, 2016.

After several years as an all male trio, the Lesters return to a mixed trio vocal configuration.  The group once again where all members are Lesters.

The 2016 edition of the group is composed of Brian Lester (lead/baritone), son Jonathan Lester (tenor/lead) and Jonathan’s wife, Bailee Lester (alto/harmony).

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • The Lester name is working on 92 years in Southern Gospel music; a feat that will not be matched by any other artist in the history of the genre.
  • Progressive Southern Gospel music has been at the forefront of the group’s sound for over 30 years.  Jonathan Lester has the stand out tracks on Ordinary People.  The biggest is a song that needs to be sent to Southern Gospel radio; “People Like Me”.  A song any listener would be able to relate.
  • Jonathan also takes the lead on the progressive ballad, “Because Of The Cross”.  His tenor vocal work on this song is impeccable.
  • The album opens with a song many will relate to Gold City, “Ain’t God Good”.  The fact is, the Lesters were the first to record (1980) and chart the song.  It was a top ten hit for the group.  Good to hear the Lesters cover it on Ordinary People.
  • Front man, Brian Lester has been a mainstay in the Lesters now for fifty years.  He turns in a strong performance on the ballad, “I Plead The Blood”.  This would also make a strong contender for Southern Gospel radio.
  • Brian and Jonathan trade verses on the up-tempo, “God And God Alone”.  This song epitomizes the Lester sound of the last 30 years.
  • Strongest songs included in order:  “People Like Me”, “Because Of The Cross”, “Ain’t God Good”, “I Plead The Blood”, “God And God Alone”, “Soldiers Of The Cross” and “Matter Of Fact, Matter Of Faith”.
CRITIQUE:
  • The biggest foul regarding Ordinary People, is not only is it unavailable for digital download, a listener wouldn’t even be able to purchase the CD from the group’s website.
  • The Andrae Crouch tune, “I Don’t Know Why” has been making its rounds lately.  I don’t know why?
  • Weakest songs included in order:  “I Don’t Know Why” and “His Name Is Wonderful”.

WRAP UP:

The Lesters have been part of my musical playlists since the 1980’s; a kid making mix tapes with songs like “Gloryland Gold” and “The Return Of El Shaddai”.  In 2016, the Lesters are still providing Southern Gospel listeners with progressive Southern Gospel music; music that should warrant a listen.

SONG/Featured Vocalist – Songwriter:  1. “Ain’t God Good”/Ensemble; Jonathan – Jeffrey Robinson  2. “I Don’t Know Why“/Brian – Andrae Crouch, Edmund Mbatha  3. “Because Of The Cross“/Jonathan – Marty Archer  4. “Wonder Working Power”/Bailee – Marty Funderburk, Rebecca Peck  5. “People Like Me”/Jonathan – Lee Black, Kenna West, Tony Wood  6. “God And God Alone”/Brian; Jonathan – Lee Black, Ricky Free, Kenna West  7. “I Plead The Blood”/Brian – Sandy Blythe  8. “Matter Of Fact, Matter Of Faith“/Bailee – Mak Kaylor, Don Wharton  9. “Soldiers Of The Cross”/Ensemble – Lee Black, Jason Cox, Kenna West  10. “His Name Is Wonderful”/Ensemble – Audrey Mieir

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