Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Fan Spotlight : Nicholas W.

Hey, all!

Modesty here, with a new Fan Spotlight feature for you.  We had Nicholas on the blog in September of 2016, and he's back for a second go-round!


(M) : Tell us a little about yourself.  (NicholasW) : I’m a 16 year old who loves Southern Gospel Music (particularly quartets) and who loves to hang out with friends and watch the Andy Griffith Show.  (M) : When and what got you started on SGM?  (NicholasW) :  I truly got into SG music in 2012, when I saw the Kingdom Heirs for the first time at Dollywood.  (M) : Do you remember which album/concert/group you heard first?  (NicholasW) :  The first group I saw live in concert was the Dove Brothers, I believe. I don’t remember the first album I heard.  (M) : What are your top five favorite groups?  (NicholasW) : That’s a hard question!! Five of my favorite groups are the Kingdom Heirs, Gold City, The Cathedrals, the Statesmen and the Blackwood Brothers.   (M) : What is one of your current favorite songs?  (NicholasW) :  My favorite song is and will always be, “He Didn’t Throw The Clay Away”.  (M) :  What SG song was last played on your iPod/CD player?  (NicholasW) :  The last song I played I think was, “We’re Gonna Rise” by my dear friends, The Little’s.  (M) :  How many SG groups have you seen in concert?  Have you kept a talley of how many concerts you've attended?  (NicholasW) :  I have no idea how many groups I’ve seen in concert (a lot of them I’ve just seen at NQC) and I have not kept a tally but that is a good idea!  (M) : Out of all the concerts/events you've attended, is there one to you as a favorite?  (NicholasW)  :  One concert that sticks out to me that I’ve attended was when Gold City came to my church on February 14th, 2015. Aside of salvation, that was probably the best day of my life!! Another event that always sticks out to me is NQC.  (M) :  Do you prefer to download music, or own the physical CDs?  (NicholasW) :  I probably prefer to download music (Apple Music). However, I love CD’s when I wanna listen to music in the car.  (M) :  Do you sing or play any instruments?  If so, what part or instrument?  (NicholasW) :  I sing at home just for fun (I love to sing) but I don’t do it professionally at all and I’ve picked up guitar a few times but I’ve not stuck with it.  (M) :  What song do you turn on for a pick-me-up?  (NicholasW) :  I don’t have a particular song in mind but I’d definitely turn on something upbeat if I need a pick-me-up.  (M) :  What song do you turn on when you need to relax?  (NicholasW) :  Once again, I don’t have a particular song in mind, but in this situation, I’d turn on something slower.  (M) :  If you could choose one song as a life song, what would it be?  (NicholasW) :  "He Didn’t Throw The Clay Away".  (M) :  Do you own any SG records/cassettes, or just downloads/CDs?  (NicholasW) : I own 2 records and about 4 or 5 cassettes.


Nicholas, thank you so much for joining us for this!  Readers, we hope you enjoyed getting to know a little more about a fellow-SG fan.  If you'd like to be featured in the Fan Spotlight, send us a message or email us at : southerngospelgazette(at)  

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Moments With Mercy- Interview With Josh Townsend!

Hey y'all! Today's interview features a very talented young pianist that you very likely have already seen in concert, as he has played for some of the very best quartets in Southern Gospel music.

While we had run into each before, the first time I actually got to chat with Josh Townsend was on the Singing at Sea cruise 2 years ago, back when he was with the Lefevre Quartet.

Now fast forward a couple of months and around mid June of last year, Josh joined the renowned group Legacy Five.  Without missing a beat, he immediately fit into this group and is doing a great job with them!
Since I'm sure you all already know who Legacy Five is, here's a link where you can watch Josh share his testimony

And now for the interview:

Josh, thank you so much for doing this! Readers, I hope you enjoyed.  Make sure to go check out Legacy Five's schedule to see if they are ever around you!

Monday, March 5, 2018

Backstage with Brett Sanders!

Hey, y'all!

Modesty here today, and we want to take you backstage with Brett Sanders.  Some of you may know Brett from his days with Redemptions Plan, but he now has a solo ministry of his own!


Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Top Moments of 2017 + Cds That Released This Year That Are Must Haves!

Hey friends,

Mercy, here.  We're hoping you all had a very Merry Christmas and a wonderful time time with family and friends.  As this year is coming to an end, we thought we'd share a few of our favorite Cds that were released in 2017.

1.  Long Run by the Old Paths

2. Last Big Thing by the Kingdom Heirs

3. They Don't Know by the Kingsmen Quartet

4. Resurrection by Joseph Habedank

5. Walk Worthy by Masters Voice

6. Back Porch Christmas by Doug Anderson

7. Beyond Amazed by Brian Free and Assurance

8. Quartet Tribute by Tribute Quartet

9. Thankful by Triumphant Quartet

10. Can't Hardly Wait by the Dixie Echoes

11. Faith and Freedom by Legacy Five

12. The Lefevre Quartet has 2 new releases this year- Well Done and I'll Be Home For Christmas.

13. No Excuses, No Regrets by Steve Ladd

14. Silence The Stones by 11th Hour

Here are a few of my top highlights of the year!

1. The return of the Old Paths Quartet!  We were so blessed to be there for their first concert this year at the Memphis Quartet Show.  Make sure you go see these guys next year!!

2. Singing At Sea cruise.  This is always such a blast and its such a blessing to get away from everything and just have a good time with some of the best in Southern Gospel.

3. NQC- The National Quartet Convention.  This is my favorite time of year, in one of my favorite places on earth.

What are some of your favorite southern gospel cds/eps?  Favorite concert you went to?  Comment and maybe we'll share it on our Facebook page!

Thank you all so much for watching/reading our interviews and reviews!  We have a few ideas in the works for Two Sisters' SGG, and can't wait to share many more with you all in the coming year.

~Modesty + Mercy

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Moments With Mercy- Interview With Channing Eleton

Hello everyone, I am so excited to share this interview with y'all. 
At NQC this year I had the pleasure to meet Channing Eleton and his family for the first time and it was such an honor!
For those of you who haven't kept up with him since he left Gold City let me tell you a little bit about him and then we'll get started.
"October of 2005, Channing resigned his position as Gold City’s keyboardist. Channing reflects, “I’ll always be thankful for my days spent with Gold City. Not only did I grow ‘leaps and bounds’ as a musician, I learned so many valuable lessons in professionalism. The Gold City guys are first class in my book and I’ll always love them and value their friendships.”November of 2005 finds Channing winning yet another ‘peer voted’ award, the Southern Gospel Music Guild’s ‘Musician Of The Year’. Channing recalls, “What was so special about this particular award show is the fact that I got to share the stage with a huge influence, hero and friend, Anthony Burger. We played a duet of one of his songs. Not only that, but I got to have a long talk with Anthony and his wife LuAnn, at the pre-show dinner. What a special memory. It was the last time I ever saw Anthony.”“For a couple of years, I was involved with a music ministry that included former Gaither Vocal Band member Buddy Mullins, Buddy’s wife Kerri, and former Sunday Drive and Martins member Paul Lancaster. This ministry was called Everyday Driven. God taught me so much during my time with these great people.”“The older I get, the more I realize that God uses the different seasons of our lives to prepare for us what’s to come. I have learned to keep looking ahead. Keep plowing forward, while enjoying the present and living each day to its fullest.”These days finds Channing still doing what he loves, making music. “My experiences allow me to do so many things I enjoy. I go out and minister to people one on one in my solo concerts. I also enjoy working in the studio with various artists, either producing or playing on their records.”Channing shares, “I want to reach people for the cause of Christ. And to get to them, I am using a powerful ministry resource…music. I have a testimony and God has given me the gift of music and the ‘Ultimate Gift’, His Son Jesus Christ. How can I not go and share it with the world?"

Just a side note, I want to apologize for my hair blowing in my face... It was a little windy that evening! And now for the interview.

If you'd like to keep up with Channing you can find him on Facebook.
Channing, Thank you so much for doing this.  Readers, I hope you enjoyed!

Saturday, November 4, 2017

Moments With Mercy - Interview with Nick Succi

Hey y'all, today we have a special treat for you.  As many of you know, while we are obviously fans of Southern Gospel today we love the history of southern gospel as well, whether it be from 10 years ago or 100 years ago.  A little while back, we got the idea to try and interview some artists that are no longer active in Southern Gospel.  So for our first interview in this "artists from the past", we'll be interviewing Nick Succi- former pianist for the mighty Kingsmen. :) 

Mercy : Tell us a little bit about yourself.

Nick : Hmmm, this is where I am supposed to discuss my humble beginnings, born to a struggling family of dirt farmers in a log cabin just outside Poverty, Ontario. We were poor… but we had nothing.
But since that didn’t happen, I’ll say this: the real Nick Succi loves to laugh and have fun more than anybody, and will refuse to take himself too seriously unless he absolutely must (and that includes this interview). He will also talk in the third person from time to time which, quite frankly, I find annoying.
So be forewarned, I (or he) may intertwine the serious with the… less serious. So, read on if you wish...
Mercy : When did you get saved?
Nick : (Seriously now) I was saved at a very young age, my father led me to The Lord. Since then, my spiritual journey has progressed through some winding roads but always striving to move forward.

Mercy : When did you start playing piano?
Nick : I started playing the piano when I was quite young. In fact, my sister was taking lessons first, not me – but I tended to fool around with the piano, and one day I realized I liked the sounds I was making… and have played ever since. I come from two very musical families, and like to think I inherited from both.

Mercy : Do you play any other instruments or sing?
Nick : I play bass guitar, but I’m smart enough to leave the singing to the professionals. However, I am an amateur bass player, so perhaps I should leave the singing to a professional bass player?

Mercy : What did you like and dislike most about being on the road?
Nick  : What I liked: Meeting amazing people, being a part of a ministry that touched people’s lives, the camaraderie among the group members I traveled with, traveling to parts of the country I have never seen, etc.
What I disliked: Not being able to be actively involved with my family as they grew up. This was by far the most taxing for me personally. I certainly admire and respect those who continue with their calling, however I feel I am exactly where God wants me in this season of my life and wouldn’t trade it for anything.

I also disliked having to fire Tony Peace every time he made me angry! Don’t get me wrong, I love Tony and he knows it, love him dearly. Nobody made me laugh more than Tony during his year and a half with The Kingsmen and he is a dear friend to this day. But even though I had no authority to do so, I
nevertheless had to fire him whenever he upset me, which tended to be on a weekly basis. So Tony, if you’re reading this, get your stuff off the bus. You’re through, “Skeeter”.
There, I feel much better now. Ask your doctor if firing Tony Peace is right for you. (Are you reading this, McCray?

Mercy : What is your favorite song to play and why?

Nick : Not sure, to be honest. In Gospel Music, I might say ‘Can You Imagine’, because I always thought it was the perfect opener, but that was liking to play a song strictly for the music, not the content. For songs I enjoyed playing as well as for content, there were many. ‘More Than Enough’ (Carolina Boys/Kingsmen, “Ready”, 2003) springs to mind as an example.
For songs that I love for spiritual content but have never had the opportunity to play, there is only one song on my list: ‘Ticklish Reuben’ by The Cathedrals. Seek it out and let it minister to you. I think I even heard Hillsong do it once.
Mercy : What do you like to do in your free time?

Nick : In my free-est of free time, I love to rollerblade, kayak, cycle and get out with my friends however and whenever possible. I also volunteer a little at the Care Home for Retired Kingsmen (affectionately referred to as ‘Beautiful Home’). Say ‘hi’ to Big Squire Maynard if you ever have the chance to stop by.
Mercy : Who are some of your pianist heroes/Inspirations?

Nick : Good question. There were certainly many, as I tried to learn what I could from each that I liked and respected. Anthony Burger would have been the single biggest influence in my formative years, but this later extended to many others as my individual style shifted away from Anthony’s. I certainly have to mention Channing Eleton, who I always considered one of the most brilliant yet humble musicians to ever grace the Gospel stage. (Of course, my favourite keyboard player of all time is Mr. Jon Lord, but we gotta stay Gospel here. 😊 )

Mercy : What is your favorite Bible verse?
Nick : Recently, it would be Isaiah 40:31 – “but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.”

Mercy : Are you still active in the music industry?

Nick : I certainly am, though in a different genre altogether. Since stepping away from The Kingsmen after six years in 2007, my Gospel Music days have been behind me (at least for now, but you never know, I might be persuaded to turn around ‘Glory Road’ one more time). Since that time, I have been playing keyboards and organ with various blues artists. Presently, I am playing whenever possible with an incredible blues guitarist named Jack De Keyzer, and have to say that I love every minute of it!
But as I said, you never know what’s around the corner. I am pretty sure I can still kick off ‘Saints Will Rise’ in an emergency. So one never knows...
Bonus Fun Question - what is the difference between Canadian bacon and any other bacon? 🙂
Nick : Simple: I think Canadian Bacon was a short-lived and poorly-received sitcom from the 90’s about an overweight family, and all the tomfoolery and misunderstandings they got up to each week, whereas any other bacon is pork, in all it’s porky goodness.

Nick, Thank you so much for doing this! Readers, I hope you enjoyed. 

Behind the Songs : Maria Kramer Wolfe!

Hey, y'all!

Modesty here this morning, and I want to share an interview with you.  I'm very excited about this one myself, and hope you are as well.  Maria is one of the absolutely sweetest girls you'll ever meet, and I was thrilled when she agreed to appear on Two Sisters'!

Before we get started, here's a little bit of information about The Kramers Music... "The Kramers are a national and international gospel music family group currently touring and ministering at 200 events per year.  Members are D. Scott Kramer (vocals, guitar, keyboards) Rachel West Kramer (vocals) and Maria Kramer Wolfe (daughter – vocals, ukulele, mandolin, piano, guitar). They are recording artists with Electric Station Records label group and booked for ministry events through the Covenant Agency based in Madison, Indiana."