Song Hall Of Fame: “When My Feet Touch The Streets Of Gold”

Hall of Fame (350x202)The month of August is just around the corner.  It is time for me to honor another of Southern Gospel’s greatest compositions by placing it into the Southern Gospel song hall of fame.

Today’s inductee goes back to 1975.  “When My Feet Touch The Streets Of Gold” was first recorded by the Kingsmen on the album, Jubilation.  It became a crowd favorite and they would re-record the song on one of their greatest albums; Live…Naturally (1981).

An interesting tidbit about the song involves the LeFevres.  While the song will forever be remembered as a Kingsmen classic, it was the LeFevres who had a top ten hit with the song in 1976.

This new song hall of fame inductee was penned by Conrad Cook.

The Southern Gospel Notebook: July 1984

Before I left for vacation, I posted about several notebooks I found while cleaning the garage.  As a kid, into my teen years, I wrote down my twenty favorite songs every month.

I started this in July 1982 and continued until December 1994.  The response was overwhelming to my first post and therefore it will continue.

Today’s post took my notebook entry from July 1984.  These were my twenty favorite songs.  Enjoy!

**Music is on the sidebar as a playlist**

Best Of The Last Decade (2007-2016)

Battle Cry (2014) – Kingsmen (Horizon): “Battle Cry“; “I’ve Never Seen The Righteous Forsaken“; “He Took Away My Burden“; “Oh Yes I Am“; “Cross Of Grace“; “Beautiful City“; “I Know“; “It Should Have Rained“;  “Faith“; “Come And Dine“; “Here I Stand Amazed“.

Life (2008) – Dove Brothers (Sonlite): “After The Storm“; “Give It To The Lord“; “I Want To Live For You“; “You Don’t Know God’s Love“; “A Day In The Life Of America“; “Face To Face With Grace“; “I Still Got A Feeling“; “You Would Think He Would Learn“; “You Can’t Fix It“; “Smooth Sailing“.

Nature’s Symphony In 432 (2016) – Isaacs (House Of Isaacs): “Nature’s Symphony“; “Fields“; “I Love You More“; “Lord Of My Heart“; “This Is The Year“; “Bird On The Wing“; “Keep Breathing“; “I Find It All In You“; “Rocks“; “If That’s What It Takes“; “Yours Amen“; “God Is Still With Me“; “Dining With The King“; “None So Lovely“; “Great Is Thy Faithfulness“.

Summer Vacation And A Found Notebook

This post will be the last until Monday July 17th, as this boy heads out on summer vacation.

As I was doing some cleaning this past week I came across a box in the garage with several notebooks I hadn’t seen in years.  When I was a kid, I used to pull out all my favorite record albums and play my favorite songs, acting like Mr DJ.

In July 1982, I started writing down my 20 favorite songs every month.  I kept up with this every month through December 1994.  It brought back memories when I was a youngster and showed me just how much Southern Gospel music impacted my life as a young boy, into my teen years.

So, I thought as I am away on vacation I would share with you what those 20 favorite songs were that I wrote down in July 1982.  The music is found on the sidebar of the website.  Now that I found these notebooks, expect more of these personal features going forward.

Southern Gospel Tidbits

DID YOU KNOW?:  Please allow me to indulge in a bit of shameless self promotion.  Did you know that Southern Gospel Views from the Back Row has a companion YouTube channel.  It’s sole purpose of keeping Southern Gospel music from the 60s/70s/80s/90s alive.

Also, I wanted to alert my readers that the song of the day is back.  Please look on the left sidebar.

And, finally the ‘ask me anything’ feature will stay a permanent part of the blog.  Please look on the left sidebar.  Click on the ‘ask me anything’ pic and leave a question anytime in the comments section.

All of this was also to say thanks to my readers for allowing me (7) years now to provide you my insights on Southern Gospel music through Southern Gospel Views from the Back Row.

They Don’t Know: Kingsmen

GRADE:  B

  • Album – They Don’t Know
  • Artist – Kingsmen
  • Label – Horizon Records
  • Style – Progressive, Traditional
  • Release Date – 04/14/17
  • Available For Digital Download? – Yes (Apple Music)
  • Running Time:  39 Minutes

SYNOPSIS:

This week we take a look at the new album from the Kingsmen, They Don’t Know.  The album’s release date was pushed back about three weeks, but is now available to the retail marketplace.

The Kingsmen are celebrating 25 years now with Crossroads and the Horizon records label.  To longtime Kingsmen listeners, They Don’t Know is the most progressive Southern Gospel recording the group has ever recorded.

This is also the first Kingsmen recording for new tenor vocalist, Joshua Horrell.  Have to also give a shout out to Ray Dean Reese for his nearly 50 years with the Kingsmen!

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Lee Black and Marcia Henry co-wrote the stand out track on They Don’t Know, “Hear The Word Of The Lord”.  The song features Bob and would make a great radio single choice.
  • The most traditional Southern Gospel friendly song on the recording is “Don’t Underestimate God’s Grace”.  Randy is featured on this mid-tempo number that should have had Ray featured on at least one verse of the song.  And it has some crying steel guitar!!
  • New tenor vocalist Joshua Horrell is given a chance to shine on They Don’t Know, given no less than three features.  His strongest is the progressive Southern Gospel ballad, “God Calls It Grace”.
  • Speaking of progressive, a good chunk of the album sounds like Brian Free and Assurance from ten years ago.  One such song is the album’s opening track and first radio single, “They Don’t Know (What The Lord Can Do)”.
  • The classic Ila Knight penned, “I’ll Sail Away Yonder” will keep traditional quartet fans happy.  You may also find yourself hitting the repeat button.
  • Can’t leave Randy out of the highlights.  His performance on the ballad, “The Evidence I Need” is a must listen.
  • Speaking of Randy, he penned “Fade To Black”.
  • Strongest songs included in order:  “Hear The Word Of The Lord”, “Don’t Underestimate God’s Grace”, “God Calls It Grace”, “I’ll Sail Away Yonder”, “The Evidence I Need”, “They Don’t Know (What The Lord Can Do)” and “Keep The Lions Hungry”.
CRITIQUE:
  • It is a travesty that long time, living legend, Southern Gospel hall of fame member, Ray Dean Reese didn’t even get one featured verse.  Shame!
  • A good portion of the album sounding like Brian Free and Assurance from ten years ago.
  • Weakest songs included in order:  “Legacy” and “Let Go And Hold Fast”.

WRAP UP:

Knowing it would be nearly impossible to follow-up their previous effort, Battle Cry, I applaud the Kingsmen and producer Jeff Collins for taking They Don’t Know in a different musical direction.  An album they can definitely be proud of.

SONG/Featured Vocalist – Songwriter:  1. “They Don’t Know (What The Lord Can Do)”/Randy – Jason Cox, Kenna West, Tony Wood  2. “Keep The Lions Hungry“/Ensemble; Bob – Regina Walden  3. “God Calls It Grace“/Joshua – Megan Mulnix, Logan Peck  4. “Hear The Word Of The Lord”/Bob – Lee Black, Marcia Henry  5. “The Evidence I Need”/Randy – Dave Clark, Jason Cox, Kenna West  6. “I’ll Sail Away Yonder”/Ensemble – Ila Knight  7. “Cost Of The Cross”/Bob – Kristi Fitzwater, Jerald Hill  8. “Let Go And Hold Fast“/Joshua – Regina Walden  9. “Fade To Black”/Joshua – Randy Crawford  10. “Don’t Underestimate God’s Grace”/Randy – Sandy Knight  11. “Legacy”/Bob – Barbara Fairchild, Marty Funderburk

Best Album Openers: “Meet Me At The Table”

kingsmen1986standupmaxLets start a new week by taking a look at another of Southern Gospel’s best album openers.

That opening song on an album sets the tone for the entire recording.  It is even more important when the artist is recording a live album.

This week’s best album opener comes from the Kingsmen’s 1986 live recording, Stand Up At Opryland USA.  The Kingsmen were in fact kings of the live recording.  They recorded more live albums than any other artist in Southern Gospel music.

“Meet Me At The Table” is one of the Kingsmen’s best album openers.  Ronny Hinson and Mike Payne came together to pen this, now, classic.