The Martins Valedictory?

Via Burke (the go-to place lately), I see the Martins have a single out from their latest album … a reunion project, it appears. Am I the only one with ambivalent feelings about this?

I mean, I’m sure there’s still a lot of interest in and enthusiasm for the Martins (including me!), but insofar as this feels like a valedictory album, it’s as much the occasion for mourning the Martins’ serial dysfunction, which kept hobbling their forward momentum, as it is an opportunity to reflect on their enormous, prodigious ability. One way to look at it: the Martins have been in this on-again-off-again squabbly fitfulness almost as long as they were originally together and touring on a national scale. If this is a reunion, it’s the bittersweet kind that runs on the pleasant but wispy fumes of memory and nostalgia.

But gosh they were astounding to encounter for the first time, weren’t they? Their style may have not have fundamentally changed the arc of southern gospel history or development, but they were atop a vanguard of groups who gave voice and shape to a generation of gospel fans looking for the music to open up and let a little air in from the outside.

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  1. quartet-man wrote:

    I first heard the Martins do “He Leadeth Me” on a Gaither DVD (the first time they appeared.) This was NOT the one Jonathan had a solo on that they later did on there. I mention that to differentiate between the two performances. I believe Jonathan’s one on the latter one was another verse that the one on the original VHS never had.

  2. tim moxley wrote:

    Johnathan has serious [edit] issues. [edit] I wish Big Jim was here and didn’t have to play the role or need the money. He could set the record straight. With all the Martins…………

  3. pk wrote:

    I do wish they would put out some new material, like a new CD. I love the old stuff, and it is a mainstay in my iPod, but I need new stuff…and it has to be them.

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