Gaither Homecoming Christmas in Allen Arena Dec. 12
By Janice Ng |
Gospel Music Hall of Famer Bill Gaither brings his all-star Gaither Homecoming crew to Lipscomb University’s Allen Arena for a special Christmas show on Thursday, Dec. 12, at 7 p.m.
The concert is hosted by the Gaither Vocal Band, featuring Gaither and vocalists David Phelps, Mark Lowry, Wes Hampton and Michael English. Special guests will include The Martins, Gene McDonald, Angela Primm, The Isaacs, Charlotte Ritchie, Kevin Williams, Greg Ritchie, Matthew Holt, Buddy Greene and Jeff Taylor. In addition, a 100-voice choir will feature students from Lipscomb Academy and Lipscomb University.
The Homecoming tour is Gaither’s salute to Southern and country gospel music and is patterned after the highly successful Gaither Homecoming video series.
Tickets and seating are now limited. Tickets range in price from $22.50-$75. For more information or to order tickets visit www.ticketsnashville.com or call 615.966.7075.
The Gaither Vocal Band
The Gaither Vocal Band started in the early 1980s with four guys singing around a piano backstage before a Bill Gaither Trio concert and an impromptu performance in front of an audience. Bill Gaither has been in the music industry for more than 40 years. He and his wife, Gloria, have won many Dove and Grammy awards for their duos prior to the creation of the Gaither Vocal Band. After the release of their first album, Homecoming, the Gaither Vocal Band released an average of more than one album per year. They have received six Grammy nominations, two Grammys for “Best Southern, Country or Bluegrass Gospel Album,” and more than 15 Dove Awards. In January 2009, the Gaither Vocal Band released a reunion of Gaither Vocal Band alumni on DVD. It immediately shot to the top of Billboard Magazine’s music video charts for four consecutive weeks, and topped Christian and Southern Gospel audio charts.
The Southern gospel a cappella trio is comprised of siblings Joyce Martin McCollough, Jonathan Martin and Judy Martin Hess. Since their release of their debut album, “The Martins,” they have produced four albums and received six Dove Awards and a Grammy nomination. They have performed on Gaither’s Homecoming video and concert series as well as at the White House for a televised concert, “Celebrating America's Musical Heritage.”
McDonald started his singing career as a child touring with his family across the Midwest and then joined the group Jack Campbell and the Ambassadors. After college, McDonald attended the Ben Speer School of Music and sang in The Plainsmen Quartet and The Florida Boys Quartet. He began singing bass on the Gaither’s Homecoming stage in 1994 and since then has become a regular in the Homecoming choir.
Primm has provided background vocals for several artists including Gaither before branching out as a solo artist. Primm is a regular for Gaither Homecoming concerts, special events and tapings.
The Isaacs have been nominated for numerous Grammys and have won four Dove Awards, including the 2008 Dove Award for Country Album of the Year for their album “Big Sky.”
Ritchie began as a vocalist for Jeff and Sheri Easter, and then as the soprano singer for legendary gospel group, The Nelsons, before becoming a gospel solo artist in 2008. She has released two solo recordings, “Closer” and “Bridges,” which have both had national success.
Williams has been with the Gaither Vocal Band for 18 years as their Homecoming Tour’s guitarist/band director. He has released eight solo instrumental albums, including his latest “Acoustic Sunday.”
Holt was playing piano professionally by the time he was 19 years old. He joined the award-winning family group The Perrys in 2004 and remained with them full-time until 2008. In 2012, Holt became the full-time keyboard player for the Gaither Vocal Band and the Gaither Homecoming Tour.
Greene’s unique vocal blend of country, bluegrass, folk and gospel influences bring variety to the Homecoming stage. Greene wrote the modern-day Christmas standard “Mary, Did You Know?” in 1991 together with Mark Lowry. Greene, one of Nashville’s finest harmonica stylists, is a founding member of Christ Community Church in Franklin, Tenn.