Personnel Round up

Today’s round up is all about hellos.

  • Randy Crawford is back with BFA (mostly random aside: I’m pretty sure I saw Crawford at Jacksons in Nashville a month or so ago, and if you’re ever at Jacksons, make sure you visit that delightful used and rare bookstore across the street while you wait for your late friends to arrive). It’s a curious choice in some ways. Crawford is not a bad singer, but neither is he anything to write home about, judging from his KM and Assurance days. And he doesn’t really seem like a BFA fit – not his look, not his vocal style, and not his vocal ability. And, as a friend of mine pointed out as well, Crawford tends to perform “way more energetically” than BFA. Then again, maybe that’s what they have in mind … someone who could energize their performance a bit.
  •  Mark Trammell Trio has brought a downmarket tenor, Joel Wood, to replace Eric Philips. I have no knowledge of or exposure to this guy whatsoever, and neither do a lot of folks I’ve talked to. Of course, in sg when a more or less complete stranger to the national circuit gets a job like this, the cynics say, he must come with money somewhere. But then, that’s what cynics (as opposed to your always optimistic host) would say.
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  1. Aaron Swain wrote:

    I’m getting ready to review Daybreak Quartet’s new Hymns project next week. That’s the group Joel Wood just came from, and the CD features him on tenor.

    From everything I’ve heard from him so far, I’d agree with Daniel Mount’s statement that his vocal style is similar to that of Keith Waggoner (Liberty Quartet).

  2. Aaron Swain wrote:

    (adding to my previous comment)
    I can probably be a better judge of how he’ll fit with MTT once I get done with the review, but I have a feeling he’ll do just fine.

  3. youngartist wrote:

    Don’t judge Randy until you’ve seen him perform with BFA. Just look at how much Jeremy Lile changed his looks from Crystal River to BFA. :)

    I think more energy will be great, and I for one love this choice so far.

  4. NonInsider wrote:

    Its an interesting choice for sure… But we will see I will see them this year at NQC, by then we can look back and say whether or not it was good choice… Maybe

  5. Larry S wrote:

    I think Randy’s a great choice. Brian obviously know what he’s getting as a vocalist AND as another personality on the bus. He’s an ol’ pro - I’ll miss Derrick, but Randy will do an awesome job, methinks. For what it’s worth, anyway.

  6. H. Reed wrote:

    Randy Crawford is a masher and will do great with Assurance

  7. afan wrote:

    No offense intended here, but some of you insiders or artists fill me in on the thoughts/feelings of those artists who seem to be constantly in and out of the industry. Paul Lancaster is the classic example. Paul has lots of fans, including myself, but he never sticks anywhere for very long (though it seems that he is considerably respected in the industry to have been a part of such groups as the Nelons, Martins, Greenes, Karen Peck and New River, etc.). I ask this question based on the fact that Randy Crawford is coming back into Southern Gospel music after being gone for a few years. Is there a love of singing and of Southern Gospel music but a constant battle knowing the sacrifice involved with living that kind of lifestyle (on a bus more than half of your life) and the limited monetary resources that most Southern Gospel artists are paid. I’d love to hear some input from people who actually have some insider knowledge.

  8. jgurnett wrote:

    Crawford is a major step-up for BF&A in the baritone position. The dude can bring it.

  9. cynical one wrote:

    Anyone who brings at least comparable singing and more stage presence than the last baritone they had will be a major improvement. I’ve felt for a couple years or more, every time I’ve seen BF&A, 2 guys look like they’re enjoying what they’re singing, and connect with the audience. The other 2 don’t. And that’s a shame, ’cause I like their sound. Just hard to watch.

  10. soldier wrote:

    There is a long-established notion in the industry that baritone singers are to be heard, not seen. They are supposed to blend the sound, not compete with the lead singer for most energetic performer.

  11. cynical one wrote:

    #10 soldier — Point well-taken, but EVERYBOD on stage ought to look like they’re glad to be there, no the deer-in-the-headlight look we talked about on a previous thread about a certain musician.

    And bass singers are allowed to be energetic in most quartets. BF&A’s doesn’t look that part, either.

  12. NonInsider wrote:

    Speaking of Personnel changes, chatter about Gold City having a complete makeover is starting to pick up again…

  13. soldier wrote:

    cynical one, I respectfully disagree with your comment about Jeremy Lile. He’s one of the best bass performers out there.

  14. cynical one wrote:

    #13 soldier, Please don’t think I don’t care for Jeremy’s singing. I think he does a great job vocally. You’re right, he’s one of the best out there, but not in stage presence.

    His appearance on stage makes me think maybe he’s a little insecure. He need not be, as he does a great job. He probably just needs a little coaxing in the visual performance category.

    Let’s face it, a HUGE part of communication is facial expression and body language. There are some people who have learned to communicate well in that area, and some who have not. I just happen to think Jeremy is too good a singer to be so stiff on stage.

    Now don’t get me wrong, I don’t believe anyone needs to go as extreme as EH&SS has, but maybe there’s a happy medium.

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