GMA Week: SGMG Concert
This year I wasn’t able to make it to Nashville in time for the Tuesday night concert hosted by the Southern Gospel Music Guild last night. But a few folks who were there have promised to send in some thoughts. I’ll be posting these as they arrive.
It was better than last year. (How could it not be?) The sound was better, the production was better and the talent was better. And no random jumping off stage weirdness that haunted us all after last year. Gold City sounds better than I’ve heard them in years. KPNR is reliable. Kim Hopper is simply briliant.
My take on it is this: there is so much talent in the SG industry. True talent. To waste time on an unmemorized introduction for Barbara Mandrell, to give her an award in 2009 for…why, exactly?, to have us sit through her daughter-in-law’s okay song, well, in essence, to waste so much time when there was so much talent was the one, true, tragic misstep. It was loooooonnnggg. Most of us left before the Crabbs, in one version or another, took the stage for the last three songs.
It remains a mystery to me why SG just can’t do a blow-out, fantastic, “here’s some of the best we have to offer doing what they do for a twenty minute set” showcase like everybody else this week. GMA is just not the time for a heavy three hour southern gospel cattle call. And an SG showcase does not have to be validated by a country music legend. I know, I know, it helps with advertising. But does it? Really?
They are going the right direction now. So, here’s hoping next year that the “awards” can be given out at a different time (a private ceremony before the celebration concert?) and the people who aren’t good at public speaking will sit back and allow the people who are, our tried and true best artists, do what it is that they do best–sing. And, in a perfect world, they’ll get more than one song.
More to come later, I hope.
Later: Another take:
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In a word: tedious. Again, way too long.
Goods: the sound & lights we’re pretty good unless you were sitting in the wings; music performances all went well except for a coupla things that just seemed (Where’d that come from?) thrown in.
The bads: The “presentation” to Barbara Mandrell was endless and Barbara was trying to own the stage, too. All the top 10 songwriter/artist/publishers received little parchment thingys in groups of 2 or 3 (songs) throughout the program … EVERBODY associated with the songs came to the stage not knowing where to stand, who was to talk, etc. Judy Nelon, the presenter, tended to ramble on and on and let everybody talk as much as they wanted. It was a mess–and again, took forever.
Aaron Wilburn was the “emcee/glue” between songs and seemed to be trying to keep things moving except that he, too, had a hard time relinquishing the stage for the next performer.
Had they just done the music and kept it moving, it would have been quite good, I think.