The Booth Brothers have been recording for over 15 years now, and they have covered a broad spectrum within those years. Last year they undoubtedly stepped out of what they had done previously with the heavy and thought provoking Declaration. I personally genuinely enjoyed that album very much; but it never gained a whole lot of traction since it never got a distribution deal. Well Let It Be Known takes a scatter gun type approach both musically and lyrically and certainly in my opinion it honestly works for the Booth Brothers. Read below for thoughts on each song individually.
1. First John – This song brought to them by Lari opens the project acappella. It is similar to the “The Gospel Song” from Declaration though in my opinion not quite as good. This song truly showcases the Booth Brothers blend and harmony in a mighty big way. 9/10
2. See What A Morning – this song flows seems to just be a natural fit opposite of the previous song, you probably cannot get anymore different in style, tempo etc… it is given a very nice Celtic feel. Northern Ireland’s Southern Gospel trio Revelation recently recorded this song as well; but the Booth Brothers’ version undoubtedly takes it to another level both musically and vocally in my opinion. 10/10
3. She Still Remembers Jesus’ Name – This is a truly heart wrenching ballad that Ronnie Booth sings exceptionally well. My grandma suffered from Alziemers, so I can relate to this song in a personal way; which is probably why it is the first single, it relates to so many people. 9/10
4. He’s So Good To Me – This song is a delightful upbeat song that has been recorded by several other artists, nothing really stands out on this one other than that typical Booth Brothers sound that we are all so familiar with. 8/10
5. When You Bow At Jesus’ Feet – This song penned by Jim Brady is a beautiful ballad featuring Brady, it slows things down and makes you sit up and take notice at the lyrics and the beautiful harmony from the Booth Brothers. The lyrics are just plain beautiful and fitting for us today as Christians, it simply says take your guilt, and your burdens and your past mistakes and just lay them at Jesus feet. This song was just what I needed the first time I heard it. Love this song. 10/10
6. Since Jesus Came – This song sung in a mills brothers style (who are key influences on the Booths) is a kind of tribute to the Mills brothers. This song showcases just how smooth singing the Booth Brothers are. I am looking forward to seeing this one live, I hear they are doing it around two microphones. Should go over well at NQC coming up next month. 9/10
7. Masterpiece of Mercy – I have loved this song since the former Statement Of Faith Trio did it last year on their freshman release. Penned by Rodney Griffin and Jim Brady, it is a terrific song lyrically and musically. The lyrics portray God as an artist working on the masterpiece that is our life as long as we let him be the artist! Ronnie Booth gets the feature, and this style of song is right in his wheelhouse. Ronnie just has that smooth voice ,and proper enunciation; my dad has always said he is one of the most easy to understand singers in Southern Gospel. 10/10
8.Let It Be Known – This song is a fantastic song for the Booth Brothers, who needed a song like this to trumpet at their concerts. It is a great flowing song that is exceptionally well written and extremely well sung. There are some very pretty harmonies throughout especially on the tag. It actually is lyrically similar to the Cathedrals “Jesus Saves” tune. I hope that daywind will send this one to radio. 10/10
9. The Masters Table – This song is a beautiful song that will draw you in from the start. It is grounded in some mighty nice lyrics, and once again is another song marked with that unmistakable Booth Brothers sound smooth and easy. I find myself coming back to this track almost more than any other song on the album it just grabbed me from the beginning and has not let go. 10/10
10. Bread Upon The Water- This song originally covered by the Imperials, and probably most notably (in the last 20 years) by the Gaither Vocal Band. This version is closer to the original, with a unique twist. It borrows a little from the rock genre as the arrangement is similar to “Walking On Sunshine”. Some people might hate that; but the Booth Brothers truly make it work. Jim Brady unquestionably stands out on this song that I cannot wait to see them perform live. 9.5/10
11. What About Now – This is hauntingly beautiful and convicting song that starts with a pretty intro with guitar which is heard throughout most of the song. However, it is not the arrangement (while very good) that stands out on this track, its the lyrics thatdownright make you stop and take notice. Michael Booth gets his first and only feature on this number, he sings it with a genuine passion to reach people. The lyric is decidedly in your face that simply asks where are you at right now in your spiritual life, “not just somewhere in your past somehow what about now” that is the defining lyric, and it is bound to convict most that hear it… I commend the Booth Brothers for doing this sort of song, not every group would have the courage to do so. It is also features a exceptionally nice A Capella outro that ties up the album quite nicely. 10/10
Overal Rating- 10/10
Summary: As I stated up top, this album takes a scatter gun approach and makes it work (it rarely does IMO). The Booth Brothers are some of the best performers both in the studio and live in Southern Gospel. Their association with Lari Goss which at first seemed to not match the Booth Brothers style has proven to be a match made in heaven. I will not compare this album with Declaration mainly because they are incomparable for one is like soccer and the other football (American). I genuinely like both and listen to both equally. I would however say that since Let It Be Known has a distribution deal through Lifeway it will probably reach a broader audience, so it will ultimately prove to be the better seller. The Booth Brothers are as good as it gets in Southern Gospel and this album proves that… Go get it!
Troy and Katy Peach are restarting First Love, Troy and Katy will be joined by Jeff Snyder formerly of The Bowling Family and The Greenes. I for one can’t wait to hear them! They will be debuting at NQC on Monday September 12th at a regional artist showcase.The statement below is from their newly formed Facebook fan page.
IT’S TRUE!! First Love will be appearing at this years NQC!
Katy VanHorn Peach, Troy Peach, and Jeff Snyder will join their voices togther as First Love in the Arist Spotlight Showcase at this year’s National Quartet Convention. Their time slot is Monday afternoon at 2:00 PM!
With First Love only making very selected appearance dates througout the year, this will be one you will not want to miss!
Come join us, Monday September 12, at 2:00 PM!
Joel Wood has announced that he is leaving the Mark Trammel Quartet. I for one liked Joel with the MTQ, and I hope he does extremely well for himself wherever God leads him in his life! I am sure that Mark will find just the right fit, and they will not miss a beat if the hiring of their bass singer Pat Barker is any indication, he is of the best bass singers in the business. As they say in sports talented players attract other talented players; so since the MTQ is chock full of good singers they should have no trouble attracting a quality tenor, the key will be finding the right fit personality wise… Pray for Mark Trammel as he is looking for that right fit.
Daniel Mount has reported that Burman Porter will be re-joining the Dove Brothers; He will start back with the quartet the week before NQC. I will sure miss David Hester as I feel he was/is one of the best bass singers in Southern Gospel music, his take on “Leaving On My Mind” was stellar… I also really like Burman so I am really looking forward to seeing them with Porter at NQC.
On August 1st the Dixie Echoes announced that they had hired a new bass singer Mike Jennings. Now they have hired their new tenor to replace Wesley Smith, his name is Michael Helwig. Michael is not new to Southern Gospel after stints with the Stamps Quartet, The Wilburns, and The Williamsons, and most recently a short stint with the Blackwood Gospel Quartet. Interestingly enough he sang baritone and lead most of the time with aforementioned groups. I have heard that he is a very capable tenor as well, I am curious to the sound that Mike and Michael will bring to the Dixie Echoes, I am sure I will find out soon enough at NQC. Here is a press release on both hires.
Daniel Mount has a terrific post (here) about when or when not to encore a song. He uses “We Shall See Jesus” as an example of a song that is never turned around The Cathedrals never encored it, Ernie Haase And Signature Sound, and Legacy Five do not encore it either… The only time I have seen it encored is when my local group (which I sing lead in) encored it once upon request from some people in the crowd right after we finished the song… So we sang the whole song again much to the delight of the parishioners. Anyway back to the point I personally believe you should never encore any ballads, and very few convention songs; too many times I have seen a group encore a chorus and they lose that “punch” that they ended the song with originally, as my dad always says “you better quit while your ahead”, also a thought that I read from one of Daniels commentators was “don’t ever encore a song, always leave the audience wanting more”. That is a valid point you can keep the crowd eating out of your hand the whole night if you leave them wanting a little more after each big song…