Skip to main content

Blog Recognizes Song Written By My Dad

I wish I had seen this earlier.

On March 6, 2012, a popular gospel music blog, Southern Gospel Views From The Back Row, rated the Speer Family's 'Big Singing Day' LP as the groups' number one album. That makes me smile because two Albany boys wrote that song, my dad and Gene Coulter. And, not only did the Speer Family record the song, they made it the title of their album!

The Southern Gospel Views From The Back Row blog regularly publishes a 'Ten On Ten' feature and the March 6, 2012 blog highlighted the the Speer Family, which has always been referred to as 'first family of Gospel music.' Mom and Dad Speer (George and Lena Speer) started singing in 1921. Eventually, the article states, all the kids would be a part of the group and Brock and Ben Speer would go on to spend their entire singing careers with the Speer's.
The blogs writer, Steve Eaton, wrote "In trying to determine the Speer Family’s pinnacle recording, it came down to the top four. Big Singing Day, from 1968, ended up at #1. Brock and Ben Speer along with Harold Lane, Ann Downing, Jeanne Johnson and Bob Johnson were members during the time of this recording. Some of the best singing from the Speers was found on this recording. "There’s Nobody Like Jesus", "Salvation In My Soul", "When Jesus Breaks The Morning", "Joy In The Camp", "I Don’t Want To Walk In The Darkness" and "Going Home" all highlight this album."

What excites me about this article is Big Singing Day beat out the 1971 album The King Is Coming, which ended up at #2. The Speer Family were the group to popularize the Bill and Gloria Gaither's classic song. It became a signature song for the group and many groups would go on to record the song over the course of the last 40 years. 

Here is the rest of the top ten....

3. He’s Still In The Fire (1989)
4. Especially Warm (1975)
5. In Concert (1972)
6. The Speer Family Album (1955)
7. Between The Cross And Heaven (1976)
8. Sacred Hour (1963)
9. Touring That City (1973)
10. The Singing Speers (1960)
Eaton concluded in his article, "Rarely do you have an artist in any genre of music that has released a 60th anniversary recording, a 70th anniversary recording and even a 75th anniversary recording, but the Speer Family has. They are a true Southern Gospel institution that should never be left out of discussions on Southern Gospel music’s biggest trend setters."

Thanks Southern Gospel Views From The Back Row for recognizing an album that my dad had a part in, The Speer Family's Big Singing Day. Click PLAY below to listen to dad's group, The Gospel Servants, sing Big Singing Day....


  1. ftrader38@aol.comMarch 23, 2013 at 9:22 PM

    randy,i know you are proud,your dad was a great artist, my wife bettys uncle george hudson played with darrel a lot, darrel will be a household name in our house and many others i am sure,thanks for sharing, fred thrasher


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

The Tornado at Beaty Swamps

Shortly after midnight on Wednesday, May 10, 1933, Beatty Swamps, TN ( also known as Bethsaida), a small rural community located in Overton County, Tennessee, approximately 6.7 miles from Livingston, was struck by an F4 tornado that completely devastated the community. The funnel, anywhere from one-half to three-quarters of a mile wide, destroyed every home in the community, and killed or injured virtually every single resident. Much of the area was swept clean of debris. This is the second deadliest tornado ever to strike Middle Tennessee.

There have been tornadoes that have gained greater notoriety, such as the Super Outbreak of April 3, 1974, but never has a tornado affected a community as completely as the one that struck Beatty Swamps.

According to the National Weather Service, it had been a humid evening in the rural Cumberland Plateau community. In nearby Allardt, the temperature that Tuesday afternoon had climaxed at 82 degrees, a warmer-than-normal reading for early May. …

Ode To A Mule

James Arness died today. Gunsmoke was every one's favorite TV show back when I was a kid. For years, at my house, we watched every single episode that came on the TV. There's isn't any need to explain the show because I am sure that most of you have seen an episode of Gunsmoke at one time or another.

When I heard that Mr. Arness has passed away, I went online, because I wanted to read some quotes from the TV show - more specifically, I wanted to read some dialogue between Festus, played by singer Ken Curtis (Sons of the Pioneers), and the rest of the cast. Festus had a way of speaking, but he always spoke the truth and what he said always made sense, well in a Festus-sort-of way, I guess.

So, I went online to do that, and well, one click led to another click, and then another and another, and before I knew it, I found myself on YouTube, and that's when I heard, for the first time in many years, this beautiful story that I want to share with you.

If you paid close atte…

Long Live The Goat Man

(This photo was made in the 1950's as the Goat Man passed through my town)
Charles McCartney was born on July 6, 1901. In 1915, at age 14, he ran away from his family's Iowa farm. He eventually wound up in New York, and was soon married to a Spanish knife-thrower. When she got pregnant they tried to make it as farmers, but bad weather and the Great Depression wiped them out. About the same time, he experienced a religious awakening. A man on a mission, he hitched up his team of goats to a wagon and took to the open road with his wife and son. His wife made goatskin clothes for him and his son to wear as a gimmick during their travels, but she quickly grew tired of the road and returned to Iowa, taking their son with her.

Charles McCartney looked like a goat. He smelled like one, too because he rarely took a bath. You take a fellow who looks like a goat, travels around with goats, eats with goats, lies down among goats and smells like a goat and it won't be long before peop…