As multiple online sources havereported, Roger and Kirk Talley’s father R.C. “Red” Talley passed away this afternoon. He had been ill for some time. He was preceded in death by his wife, Connie Talley, in 2010. The visitation and funeral will be on Monday.
It’s never a good time for a parent to pass away, but some are decidedly worse than others. Debra Talley is currently in a Nashville hospital with a concussion. Her chair fell off the back row of the stage at yesterday’s Gaither Homecoming video recording.
Please keep the Talleys in your prayers!
UPDATE (5/23): Debra has been released from the hospital and is on the mend.
He began his recording and radio performance career in the 1930s. He joined the Billy Graham crusade team in 1947, and would remain associated with Graham and the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association for the next fifty-five years. Through his singing career, it is estimated that he sang to more than 220 million people live and in person. He has held the Guinness Book of World Records title for performing to more people live than any other person.
His impact on Southern Gospel is extensive; among other things, he co-wrote “I’d Rather Have Jesus” and popularized both “How Great Thou Art” and “To God Be the Glory.”
Canton Junction is discontinuing their debut recording, which we reviewed here, and replacing it with Show Me Your Way, releasing May 21. Eleven tracks will be from the discontinued debut, and will apparently be re-cut with new vocalist Shane McConnell. There will be three new tracks, live renditions of “Just a Little Talk with Jesus/Jesus on the Main Line Medley” and “In God We Still Trust,” and a new studio track, “Back On My Feet Again.”
ORIGINAL POST, SUNDAY, 10:04 P.M.: Several Southern Gospel performers, including Jeff & Sheri Easter, Karen Peck Gooch, and Shawn Degenhart (who performed with Hill in the Heritage Harmony Quartet), are reporting that soloist Stephen Hill passed away suddenly today after a heart attack. He was in Lumberton, North Carolina for a concert at Antioch Baptist Church (Wesley Pritchard’s home church)(UPDATE: Early reports that it was Pritchard’s home church appear to be incorrect.)
Hill was best known for his Gaither Homecoming appearances as a soloist. He was also on the Heritage Harmony Quartet’s debut recording, which we gave a five-star rating here.
UPDATE, 7 AM 8/6/12: The Gaither organization has officially confirmed Stephen Hill’s passing. He suffered a massive heart attack during soundcheck for yesterday evening’s concert. They added:
Stephen was a “gentle giant” with a kind, soft-spoken nature and a tenor voice as versatile as it was beautiful. He had a sincere heart for people and for sharing the hope of Christ with audiences throughout his career. He was dearly loved by his friends, family and the music community.
Stephen is survived by his wife, Kathy, and their three children, Melody, Miriam, and Caleb.
UPDATE, 8:58 AM, 8/7/12: Funeral plans, via Woody Wright on Facebook:
I hope everyone will make plans to be with us on Monday August 13 at Grace Church of the Nazarene near Opryland in Nashville at 1 PM. Kathy, Melody, Miriam and Caleb appreciate your prayers as they deal with the shock and grief of this sudden, unexpected tragedy. They have asked for a great celebration of Stephen’s extraordinary life.
UPDATE, 9:25 PM, 8/7/12: Updated time for service: The funeral will be at 3:00 pm Monday, August 13; visitation will be (before) 1:00-3:00pm.
Mark Trammell posted on Facebook that his mother, Elizabeth Trammell, passed away at 1 AM Central Time:\
At 1 AM central time… Mom quietly and peacefully walked thru the gates of pearl….No more broken hip, no cancer, no arthritis, no heart problems. She made it…..because Jesus said that she would!!!!!!! Yay MOM!!
Please keep the Trammell family in your prayers.
UPDATE: Singing News posted funeral arrangements: “Huson Funeral Home in Sherwood, Arkansas, will be handling the arrangements for Ms. Trammell. The visitation will be Sunday, August 5, 2012 from 12 – 2 p.m., with the celebration of life service at 2 p.m.”
Lily Fern Weatherford posted on her Facebook page today that Maude Aimee Humbard has passed away. Maude was the wife of Rex Humbard, the televangelist at the Cathedral of Tomorrow who launched the Weatherfords’ career and formed the Cathedral Trio/Quartet.
Jackie Wilburn passed away this morning at age 74. The patriarch of the Wilburn clan was vacationing with his family in Gatlinburg, Tennessee. Funeral arrangements will be handled by Sanderson Funeral Home in Carthage, Tennessee.
Jackie married Elaine Wilburn in May 1959. By the mid-1970s, he became an ordained preacher. They also started touring and singing with their three sons as The Wilburns. The group launched to national prominence in the late 1980s, retiring in 2004. Though they would have several hit songs, including “Outside the Gate,” “When Dust Shall Sing,” and “Resting Place,” their largest legacy is in the careers they launched. When their son Jonathan moved from The Wilburns to Gold City, the rest was history, and Gold City was on its way (back) to the top.
But that was just the beginning. The list of prominent Wilburns alumni includes, in fact, most of their members: Tony Gore (Tony Gore & Majesty), Loren Harris (Perrys), Ricky Atkinson (songwriter / Ricky Atkinson & Compasson), Troy Peach (Steeles, First Love, Perrys), Michael Helwig (Dixie Echoes), and the list goes on. Rounding out that list are two members of the final (2004) Wilburns lineup, Gary Casto and Josh Singletary, who continue to perform together in their own group, Tribute Quartet.
Jackie Wilburn’s legacy continues today through his family: His son Jonathan and grandson Jordan Wilburn, the second and third generations of the Wilburn clan, recently launched the duo Wilburn & Wilburn, carrying the legacy forward.
Several weeks ago, in what may have been his final concert appearance, Jackie appeared with Elaine, Jonathan, Jordan, and Ricky Atkinson for a Wilburns Reunion concert. SGConcerts’ Diana Brantley was on the scene and posted several videos. Here’s an acappella song featuring Jackie, “The Old Story Will Never Grow Old”:
From the same evening, here are all five singing “Resting Place”:
Since Jesus died, the grave has lost its victory And if you’re in Christ, death has lost its sting You see, Christ conquered death, so He opened up the chorus With voices raised, and shouts of praise, dust shall sing
When dust shall sing, on Resurrection morning…
This morning brought death, not resurrection. Yet this morning, in the presence of the King, dust is singing.
UPDATE: Here are some comments from Jonathan Wilburn about his father’s last day.
Janice Brashear, mother / pianist for the Brashears, passed away on Monday, the 26th. (Hat tip, DW.) She is survived by her husband of 51 years, Jarrell Brashear, three children, seven grandchildren, and a great-grandson. She had been suffering from Parkinson’s Disease. Funeral arrangements are listed here.
Charlie Burke passed away this morning in Winston-Salem North Carolina, after suffering a likely brain aneurysm last night.
For several decades, Burke was a behind-the-scenes member of the Southern Gospel industry, through owning the Singing Americans, owning Tape Corporation of America (with his son, Michael Burke), and as a co-owner and board member of the National Quartet Convention. Under his leadership, the Singing Americans brought singers like Danny Funderburk, Ivan Parker, Clayton Inman, Rick Strickland, and Michael English to the forefront of Southern Gospel music. He also helped launch the Whisnants, the Reggie Sadler Family, and the Dove Brothers.
Mike Rogers joins Brian Free & Assurance (19) Daniel J. Mount: I got the press release a few minutes ago. I scheduled it to go up tomorrow. (Today was crazy enough without adding another story into the mix.) Josh: Aaron Dishman is the new DMB baritone/pianist. Ah, Facebook. Chris Henry: That makes 3 singers from the DMBoys that Brian has hired as baritone. Singletary, Selph, and now Rogers. He goes to Ed O’Neal for baritones like Weird Al goes to Michael Jackson... Aaron Swain: Matt Felts posted this picture on Facebook a couple of weeks ago and said an announcement was coming soon, so they may have found a baritone/pianist that has not yet been announced....
Joseph Habedank leaves The Perrys (38) Shirley Farrah: Does anyone know if Joseph’s resignation was effective immediately? Just wondering if he might do a few more concerts before leaving. Thanks! Rick: I really hate to see Joseph leave. It would be nice if they could talk Loren Harris in to coming back. I expect to see Joseph singing with his wife based on some things on his Facebook page. Daniel J. Mount: Thanks! I knew for sure that he was at least somewhat responsive. I just didn’t know how responsive he was. ANOM: AS AN UNNAMED FAMILY MEMBER OF THE PERRYS I RESPOND TO THE TRACY BEING IN A COMA QUESTION, HE IS RESPONSIVE HE IS JUST GOING TO HAVE TO LEARN TO DO EVERYTHING AGAIN, WALK, TALK, SPEAK SO...