5 star

CD Review: Deeper Oceans (Joseph Habedank)

  • Posted on October 17, 2019 at 4:57 pm

Singing News readers just voted Joseph Habedank favorite artist again for 2019. It won’t take long to figure out why when you listen to his latest CD. His song Shame On Me has already made it to the #2 spot on the Singing News Top 20, but there is not a so-so song on this recording. Every song was co-written by Joseph and reflects This Grace that he has obviously found.

The last song on the CD, One More Reason, was dedicated to his grandma. Having lost my grandma earlier this year, this song especially resonates with me, and I think it will with a lot of people.

The music on this CD is very progressive so will be liked by a broad audience of old and young, southern gospel and contemporary fans.

CD Review: Noah Believed (Buddy Davis)

  • Posted on May 20, 2019 at 7:38 pm

If you have never heard Buddy Davis, you are missing out. I think of his music as being for children, but I have enjoyed listening to this CD before I give it to my 9-year-old nephew who is a HUGE Buddy Davis fan.

This CD includes 12 songs written by Mr. Davis–all on the topic of Noah and the Ark. They are Biblical, some are witty, telling the story in music. The other day, my 3-year-old niece was a little grouchy so I brought her in with me and we sat and listened to this CD. Whenever a song would end, she would ask for another. If you have young children or grandchildren, or if you are just in a mood for something different, I highly recommend this.

Songs included are: The Lord Himself Will Shut the Door; The Global Flood Really Happened; Forty Days and Forty Nights; Animal Kinds; Inside the Ark, We’re Safe; Noah’s Ark Fever; The Earth Is Dry; My Raven Won’t Come Back; Floating Zoo; Noah Believed; The Wonder of a Rainbow; and Come to the Ark.

CD Review: Turn the Page (Misty Freeman)

  • Posted on May 14, 2018 at 9:08 pm

This is my favorite CD from Misty Freeman thus far. The only negative thing I have to say about it is that there are only six songs but the songs are comprised of good lyrics and arrangments, so you will not feel let down. You will just have to listen to it more often. 🙂

New Beginnings is a song that everyone should hear. Life is too short to hold grudges, compare yourself with others, be too serious, etc.

A Day in the Life of Jesus talks about the things Jesus did on a daily basis: healing people, walking on water, forgiving.

“The time that you spent here on earth is The best Sermon I ever heard.” A thought-provoking song. Something we should all aspire to have said about us.

Too Fast is a song that every parent can relate too. Enjoy your children while they are little. This stage will be over way too soon.

The other songs on this CD are: Garden of Grace and When God Speaks.


CD Review: Life is Good (The Hoppers)

  • Posted on January 9, 2017 at 5:57 pm

My first CD review this year goes to my favorite CD of 2016. It caught my attention after hearing a few songs off of it. When I got the CD, I was not disappointed. I ordered a copy for a friend right away and, thankfully, he shared my sentiments. It was five years in the making for The Hoppers but definitely worth the wait.

I believe Jesus, the One was their first radio single. This was the only song I wasn’t really wild about when I first heard it but it’s grown on me.

Life is Good is my new pick-me-up when I’m having a rough day.

Connie sings the lead on Grace Will Get to You. No matter what you’ve done, God’s grace will find you.

“If He asks you to walk a mile with him, Walk Two. If He asks you to lend an ear to Him, listen the whole night through.” The world is full of people who will grudgingly do the bare minimum.  God needs people willing to wholeheartedly go above and beyond the call of “duty.”

I love their arrangement of Brethren We Have Met to Worship. It will make you want to “have church.”

Another song I really like is If We Ever Gotta Look. I saw them do this in concert and loved it immediately. “If we ever gotta look at what’s waiting up there, we wouldn’t want to stay down here.”

The tempo slows down as Claude sings an old Rusty Goodman song: Until You’ve Known the Love of God.

Song of Moses is a song of hope. “All your battles, He won at Calvary. Shout the message of Moses’ song.” If you know the story of Moses, you will recall the stories of victory, hope when all seemed hopeless.

I’ve enjoyed seeing Dean & Kim’s daughter Karlye on stage with her family this year. She sings the lead on My Ransom.

The tempo picks back up for By and By.

Before the Sun Goes Down is the perfect ending for a thought-provoking CD. “Before I reach the end of day, I’ve got to know I’ve walked Your way.” A song to ponder as you listen carefully to the words.

CD Review: Moments Like These (The Bowling Family)

  • Posted on February 10, 2016 at 6:26 pm

The Bowling Family is comprised of Mike and Kelly Bowling and their daughter Hope. This is my first time to listen to a full CD of theirs, but what a blessing it is. I give it 5 stars because of the quality of the songs. There is not a “dud” on this recording. Songs of faith, hope, and the resurrection fill this CD, leaving you encouraged and ready to face another day.

Mike sings the uptempo, Praise God, He is Alive.

Hope sings about One Moment of Faith.

I Was There is the Heavenly Father reminding you that He was there during everything you have gone through … and He will continue to be.

Mourning to Dancing is another toe-tapping song of hope.

In the next song, Mike tells us again I Believe He’s Alive.

The tempo slows way down for a song Mike and Kelly Bowling wrote with Marcia Henry Bloodworth: Even When You’re Asking Why. “You will never get to walk this road by sight. Only faith will lead you through the night. But God loves you and He’s with you, even when you’re asking why.”

Some of you will know the old song, I’ve Got My Foot on the Rock. I hadn’t heard this one in quite a while.

God is Always Good reminds us of that truth that many seem to lose sight of. No matter what you are going through, it does not change the fact that God is still good.

If you’re still not convinced, the next song puts it another way: God Likes Working in the Midnight Hour.

Kelly sings Our First Hallelujah There, a song that ushers you into the presence of Heaven as you picture your first moments there.

CD Review: Welcome Home (Joseph Habedank)

  • Posted on July 25, 2015 at 3:16 pm

Two years ago, Joseph Habedank left his ten-year position as a singer for The Perrys due to an addition to prescription drugs. Shortly after that, he acknowledged his need for help and checked into a drug and alcohol center. After what must have been a very difficult, humbling time in his life, he emerged victoriously and, last year, released a CD of 10 very encouraging songs, all co-written by him.

Welcome Home is an uplifting song of welcome for the family of God.

“Jesus loves beggars Begging For Change.” I love that! When Jesus comes into your life, He will change your life. You simply need to surrender.

“When it seems it can’t be done, I know God is Big Enough.” A song of great encouragement for those who are down and beginning to feel that things are hopeless.

Life can be hard, even for Christians. Sometimes it’s very hard. “But I have Never No Never seen the righteous forsaken.”

The enemy is working hard to discourage God’s children; however, it is so important to realize that his words are Empty. We serve a God who has a great plan for your life in spite of what satan says.

The Beauty of the Blood was the #8 song on Singing News’ chart for last week. A beautiful song about the Cross and God’s love for us.

God can do Wonders With Water, including working through your tears.

Now I Know Him reminds us that, although we may know a lot about God and know Him to some degree, it is through the pain and tears that we come to know Him better than ever before.

A Little Bit of Thunder is another song of hope. No matter what is going on in the world, there is nothing to be afraid of. Our God is still in control.

“When the stage is bare and there’s nobody there, will it still be my prayer to live the life they all think I lead? And will I be like who I sing about When the Lights Go Down?” A powerful song of reflection. Are you the person everyone thinks you are, or are you living a double life? God is calling you to come Home. Allow Him to change you from the inside out. Receive the peace and joy that He gives to those who are willing to surrender to Him … even after the lights go down.

CD Review: HYMNS: the A Cappella Sessions (The Nelons)

  • Posted on February 24, 2015 at 9:18 pm

I am not typically a fan of a cappella recordings but this CD from the Nelons is a keeper.

They did a brave move by starting the CD with The Hallelujah Chorus but it does the job in capturing your attention so you desire to hear the rest of the project.

It may grow on me but I am not particularly fond of their rendition of There is a Fountain. I expect some will like it though because it is different. It does showcase their tight harmony.

I hadn’t heard Do Unto Others before but they put a lot of soul into this arrangement.

Then the tempo slows down for a medley of Pass Me Not, O Gentle Savior and Just as I Am.

They did a rousing rendition of Keep On the Firing Line/Onward Christian Soldiers.

Other songs include: Tis So Sweet; Hallelujah, What a Savior; Since Jesus Passed By; and I Need Thee Every Hour.

CD Review: Difference (Brothers Forever)

  • Posted on July 15, 2014 at 6:49 pm

I was introduced to Brothers Forever a number of years ago, so I was excited when their latest CD was finally released. Curtis Hagy and Gary Ballew did not disappoint me except for the fact that there are only six songs on this recording. They are worth the purchase though. Very well done. Good songs professionally recorded and arranged.

That’s Why I Pray This was the first song released to radio which was a great choice. The verses mention the negative happenings in our world today but the chorus reminds us that that’s why we should pray. “I’m begging for forgiveness. I wanna make a difference even in the smallest way. I’m only one person but I can feel it working. I believe in better days. THAT’S why I pray.”

Live to Love is a song about a couple who had a fight but the chorus is one of commitment to work it out. “If our hearts break, nobody wins.” Marriages are worth fighting for.

Difference talks about how short life is and the importance of letting “the world know who saved my soul and redeemed my heart.” No matter what others’ goals are, “I wanna make a difference.”

Changed speaks of the difference in a person’s life after coming to know Christ.

Fight talks about surrender. There is no good thing in us apart from Christ. If we surrender to Him, we receive His peace, love, and so much more. Why are you fighting Him and resisting the change that He desires to bring?

I Do is a beautiful love song. If you’re looking for a song to be sung at your wedding, this is a nice one.

CD Review: “Statements of My Faith: Hymns” (Ann Downing)

  • Posted on February 27, 2014 at 2:27 am

152199It wasn’t that long ago that I did not like “Hymns” recordings. Maybe I’m getting old but I think there are better “Hymns” projects being recorded these days. Years ago, every recording seemed to feature the same hymns, just different vocals. Today there seems to be more variety and creativity to remind us there are more than just 8 or 10 hymns to inspire and minister to you. Ann Downing has chosen 11 such hymns which she sings very traditionally, yet in her own way. One thing I particular like about this CD is that each song sounds different: different instruments, arrangements, etc. Jeff Duffield did the orchestrations on this recording, and he did a great job.

As soon as she begins singing I Stand Amazed in the Presence, my heart wells up with praise as I truly think of how wonderful is my Savior’s love for me! This feeling continues to the last note of All That Thrills My Soul.

And Can It Be? deserves a special mention. Very nice musical arrangement and sung in a way that brings the words to life. “My chains fell off. My heart was free. I rose, went forth, and followed Thee.” I’m so glad I did!

There is a Fountain is sung with piano only.

Sue Duffield joined Ann in a beautiful arrangement of Lead Me to Calvary.

Other songs included are: God Leads Us Along, How Firm a Foundation, Footsteps of Jesus, He Giveth More Grace, Blessed Assurance, and He Hideth My Soul.


CD Review: Sweet Songs About Heaven (Blackwood Brothers)

  • Posted on January 4, 2013 at 11:14 pm

The Blackwood Brothers recently released a new project with Daywind. If you liked the old Blackwood Brothers Quartet with James and Cecil Blackwood, you will enjoy this CD.

“Goodbye, Egypt (Hello, Canaanland)” is a moderate tempo song, typical of the kind of quartet song we would expect from the old Blackwood Brothers.

“Swing Low Sweet Chariot/Swing Down Chariot” takes me back to my earliest memories of hearing the Blackwood Brothers sing these songs. It’s amazing how much Jimmy Blackwood sounds like his dad, James. I didn’t realize until writing this review that Jimmy recently retired so I’m especially blessed to have what will apparently be his last recording for a while.

Tenor Wayne Little sang, “Sweet Songs About Heaven.”

“That’s What Was Good About the Good Old Days” is an uptempo song about, as the title says, the good old days.

Jimmy sang, “It Is No Secret.”

One of my favorites is “I’ve Heard About a City/Walk Dem Golden Stairs,” featuring bass singer Butch Owens. It’s the kind of quartet song and singing I love.

“That’s What Heaven Will Be” is a moderate tempo “happy” song.

“Declaration of Dependence” is a powerful song about our dependence on the Lord. We can do nothing apart from him.

I love the song “Someone to Care,” and the Blackwoods did a good, heartfelt arrangement of this song as well.

“The Devil Can’t Harm a Praying Man” is another uptempo song that must be fun in concert.