Rodney Dillard’s long and illustrious career has resulted in two GRAMMY® Nominations, induction into the International Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame, a well-known acting stint on The Andy Griffith Show, and worldwide acclaim for over 50 years of recording both traditional bluegrass and his own brand of DillardGrass. It is with great pleasure that Rural Rhythm Christian announces the August 16, 2011 album release, “DON’T WAIT FOR THE HEARSE TO TAKE YOU TO CHURCH” by Rodney Dillard & The Dillard Band (Featuring Beverly Dillard). The album features stand out tracks like the title cut, and also the “The Devil Just Can’t Knock Me Off My Knees”, written by the Dillard’s friend and 5-time Dove Award winning songwriter Bruce Haynes.
Musicians on DON’T WAIT FOR THE HEARSE TO TAKE YOU TO CHURCH include: Rodney Dillard (lead & harmony vocals, guitar, Dobro); Beverly Dillard (lead & harmony vocals, banjo); Steve Bush (banjo, mandolin, bass); George Giddens (fiddle, mandolin, harmony vocals); Tim Crouch (fiddle, mandolin); Bruce Hoffman (fiddle); Marty Wilhite (bass); Pete Generous (Percussion); and Jim Glaspy (harmony vocals).
The Andy Griffith Show has captured the hearts of Americans since the 1960’s. Its emphasis on family values, Christian principles and simply doing the right thing made it the most popular show in television history. RODNEY DILLARD was one of the beloved “Darling boys” on many episodes. Now RODNEY and his wife, BEVERLY announce they are bringing their acclaimed MAYBERRY VALUES program to churches all over America, proclaiming those cherished values. Using humor, stories, testimonies, scriptures, song and video presentations, the Dillards are able to touch and inspire families and individuals of all ages. As they say in Mayberry, lets get “all keyed up” – this time for the Lord.
“My wife Sharon and I have known Rodney and Beverly Dillard for over 20 years. We know them to be fine Christian people of integrity and they have a heart for the lost. I think MAYBERRY VALUES is a great way to witness to people because everybody knows about Mayberry and what it stands for. God bless their ministry and all their efforts to further the Kingdom of God,” said RICKY SKAGGS
For more information on Rodney Dillard & The Dillard and also the MAYBERRY VALUES ministry, please visit www.RodneyDillard.TV
(Scroll down to hear song clips for each track of this incredible new album)
Mike Scott will be a special guest on WAMU’s Bluegrass Country with Bob Webster in Washington, DC telling the stories behind the 13 tracks, writers, musicians, guest artists, and each song’s spiritual connection on “Take Me Lord & Use Me.”
Part one will air this Sunday, March 27, 2011 at 7:00 – 11:00 am (EST) and repeated Tuesday, March 29, 2011 at 9:00 am – 1:00 pm (EST).
Part two will air Sunday, April 3, 2011 at 7:00 – 11:00 am (EST) and a repeated Tuesday, April 5, 2011 at 9:00 am – 1:00 pm (EST).
Rural Rhythm Christian Announces Two GMA Dove Award Nominations:
SOUNDS LIKE HEAVEN TO ME by Lou Reid and Carolina
LOOK TO THE LIGHT: SONGS OF FAITH by the Pen of Rick Lang
by Various Artists
RURAL RHYTHM CHRISTIAN is very proud to announce the label’s two 2011 GMA DOVE AWARD NOMINATIONS for BLUEGRASS ALBUM OF THE YEAR: LOOK TO THE LIGHT: Songs of Faith from the Pen of Rick Lang – Various Artists, produced by Rick Lang, John Miller and Jesse Brock; and SOUNDS LIKE HEAVEN TO ME by Lou Reid and Carolina, produced by Lou Reid. “I am humbled and feel very blessed that our new label, Rural Rhythm Christian is represented by 2 of the 6 nominations in the Bluegrass Album of the Year category. Congratulations to Lou Reid and Carolina, Rick Lang and all the wonderful artists on the LOOK TO THE LIGHT album for this special honor and acknowledgement for their music ministry. We are also very grateful to all those important GMA members who voted for our artists for these nominations,” said Sam Passamano, Jr., President of Rural Rhythm.
LOOK TO THE LIGHT: Songs of Faith from the Pen of Rick Langincludes over two dozen songs by Christian songwriter, Rick Lang. The album features performances by a variety of top, well-known award-winning bluegrass artists including: Russell Moore, Dale Ann Bradley, Jeff Parker, Junior Sisk, and Barry Scott; with musicians, Michael Cleveland, Ron Stewart, John Miller, Jesse Brock and more. “On behalf of all who played a part in the making of LOOK TO THE LIGHT, I am deeply honored. I am extremely thankful to Sam, Pam and all the wonderful folks at Rural Rhythm and Rural Rhythm Christian for believing in me and for their their strong support of my newest creative work. This is truly a blessing,” said Rick Lang.
SOUNDS LIKE HEAVEN TO ME, by Lou Reid and Carolina is the first bluegrass gospel album by the band. Lou was thrilled to hear the news today saying, “Now this really Sounds Like Heaven To Me! After waiting almost my whole lifetime to record a gospel album and then hearing it received a Dove Award nomination, well, it just doesn’t get any better than that!”
Lou of course provides his trademark lead vocals and mandolin talents and is joined by Christy Reid on bass and vocals, Shannon Slaughter on guitar and vocals, Trevor Watson on banjo, with special guest. Ron Stewart on fiddle. The album also includes the beautiful a capella song, “It’s So Hard to Stumble (When You’re Down on Your Knees)” co-written by Lou Reid. This song garnered a nomination for the 2009 IBMA Gospel Song of the Year Award, and was nominated for the 2010 GMA Dove Award for Bluegrass Gospel Song of the Year. Lou Reid and Carolina fans received a preview of the group’s bluegrass gospel roots as “It’s So Hard to Stumble” was also featured on the band’s current award winning mainstream bluegrass album, MY OWN SET OF RULES.
Rural Rhythm Records has received numerous GMA Dove nominations of the past several years in the BLUEGRASS ALBUM OF THE YEAR category including: GOD’S MASTERPIECE by The Marksmen Quartet in 2008 and PICKIN, PRAISIN’ & SINGIN’ by Cody Shuler & Pine Mountain Railroad in 2009. Late in 2009, the label launched their new Christian arm of the label, RURAL RHYTHM CHRISTIAN with two projects, I JUST WANT TO THANK YOU LORD by Larry Sparks and BLUE RIDGE MOUNTAIN MEMORIES by The Marksmen Quartet - both of which received 2010 GMA DOVE NOMINATIONS.
The 42nd Annual GMA Dove Awards Show will take place on Wednesday, April 20, 2011 at the Fox Theatre in Atlanta, Georgia at 8:00 p.m. EST. The awards will be broadcast on GMC, America’s on Easter Sunday, April 24, 2011 at 7:00 p.m. EST.
RURAL RHYTHM CHRISTIAN is proud to announce the new album release, “SOUNDS LIKE HEAVEN TO ME,” by LOU REID AND CAROLINA. The first radio single, “God’s Front Porch” has been released to bluegrass, Southern Gospel and other stations via Airplay Direct.
SOUNDS LIKE HEAVEN TO ME is now available everywhere including Walmart, f.y.e., Ernest Tubbs, County Sales, Music Shed, Amazon.com, iTunes, Elderly Instruments, Family Christian, Lifeway, and more fine outlets.
This is the first bluegrass gospel album by LOU REID AND CAROLINA and includes the talents of Lou Reid on lead vocals and mandolin, Christy Reid on bass and vocals, Shannon Slaughter on guitar and vocals, Trevor Watson on banjo, and guest, Ron Stewart on fiddle.
SOUNDS LIKE HEAVEN TO ME also includes the beautiful a capella song, “It’s So Hard to Stumble (When You’re Down on Your Knees)” co-written by Lou Reid. This song garnered a nomination for the 2009 IBMA Gospel Song of the Year Award, and was nominated for the 2010 GMA Dove Award for “Bluegrass Gospel Song of the Year.” Lou Reid and Carolina fans received a preview of the group’s bluegrass gospel roots as “It’s So Hard to Stumble” was also featured on the band’s current award winning mainstream bluegrass album, MY OWN SET OF RULES. That album also contained another hit song, “Amanda Lynn” that won the 2010 SPBGMA Song of the Year Award and garnered #1 chart positions for both the album and single on the Bluegrass Unlimited Magazine and Bluegrass Music Profiles charts.
For more information on Lou Reid and Carolina, please visit www.loureidandcarolina.com
Rural Rhythm Christian is proud to announce the album release, SOMWHERE IN GLORY by Common Strings. Music partners Darron and Vanessa Nichols called on their very talented bluegrass friends and fellow mountain neighbors to capture the authentic sounds of Appalachia including: Album Producer, Sammy Shelor who also provides his banjo talents; Dale Ann Bradley and Steve Gulley on harmony vocals; Mike Hartgrove on fiddle; and Mark Hodges, Engineer.
SOMEWHERE IN GLORY is a collection of songs sung and played much of the same as they have been in Appalachia over the past seven generations. Some songs were written in the early seventeen hundreds and one was written while on a ship sailing to the new world. Even the new songs written by Vanessa’s father, Wayne King (“Beyond the Mist of Blue”, “The Revelation”) and Darron Nichols original songs (“Glorious Power” and “Golden Streets of Home”) have a very old, mountain sound.
Vanessa Nichols is a true coal miner’s daughter, whose father is still a miner in the mountains of Eastern Kentucky. She is blessed with an amazing voice and an appreciation for the old-time mountain songs her mother and grandmother shared with her over the years. The band is dedicating the song, “Hardhat for a Halo” to the families and miners of the West Virginia and Kentucky coal mine accident. Singer, songwriter and musician Darron Nichols has also been blessed with a strong love of the musical heritage passed down through the years and has a strong desire to preserve the songs of Appalachia for future generations.
The group is also celebrating another milestone. Tuesday, Common Strings, Dale Ann Bradley and Steve Gulley launched The Cumberland River Academy of Bluegrass and Appalachian Music at the Bell Theater in Pineville, Kentucky. The program is designed to educate and inform students of all ages about the historical values of the music and culture of the people who settled the Southern Appalachian Mountains. Mary Jenkins will serve as Executive Director.
For more information on Common Strings including SOMEHWHERE IN GLORY, please visit the band’s website.
Rural Rhythm Christian is proud to announce the May 4, 2010 album release of “LOOK TO THE LIGHT: Songs of Faith from the Pen of Rick Lang.” Christian songwriter, Rick Lang has had well over two dozen of his songs recorded and performed by a variety of top, well-known and award-winning bluegrass groups. Also serving as Executive Producer, Lang hand picked award-winning bluegrass artists to perform on the album including: Russell Moore, Dale Ann Bradley, Jeff Parker, Junior Sisk, and Barry Scott; with musicians, Michael Cleveland, Ron Stewart, John Miller, Jesse Brock and more.
The album, arranged and co-produced by John Miller and Jesse Brock, features newly written songs by Rick Lang and co-writing assistance on three tracks from Pete Goble, Ted DeMille and Justin Carbone. The first single release, “How Far Will I Fall,” includes the incredible lead vocals by Russell Moore who said, “This is a wonderful project and I’m very proud that Rick asked me to be a part of it. I hope that my vocal contributions have given justice to his heartfelt messages.” The song is now available to radio via AirPlay Direct and will also be serviced to Bluegrass, Southern Gospel and Country Gospel radio stations.
“LOOK TO THE LIGHT’ is more than a great gospel album, it’s a tour de force of bluegrass’ finest, coupled with heartfelt songs from the pen of preeminent bluegrass gospel songwriter Rick Lang. “A must have,” said Terry Herd, Bluegrass Radio Network.
Rick Lang is featured in the new issue of Bluegrass Music Profiles, Songwriter Profile and also in the current issue of Power Source Magazine, Bluegrass News section, New Release Spotlight. Rick explains his goal for “LOOK TO THE LIGHT ” saying, “To touch the heart and stir the soul of all who listen to these songs. Each was written from personal experiences and my own struggles with day-to-day life and my faith.”
1. THIRST & HUNGER (Russell Moore & Dale Ann Bradley)
2. BEAUTIFUL HALL (Jeff Parker)
3. LOOK TO THE LIGHT (John Miller, Jesse Brock & Dale Ann Bradley)
4. ANGEL AT YOUR SIDE (Barry Scott & Dale Ann Bradley)
5. I’VE BEEN REDEEMED (Junior Sisk)
6. BAD NEWS FOR THE DEVIL (John Miller & Dale Ann Bradley)
7. HIS LOVING CARE (Junior Sisk)
8. HE’LL LEAD YOU UP (Jeff Parker)
9. HOW FAR WILL I FALL (Russell Moore & Dale Ann Bradley)
10. I LONG TO SEE HIS FACE (John Miller & Jesse Brock)
11. THE GOOD SAMARITAN (Jeff Parker)
12. MOMMA’S PRAYER BEADS (John Miller & Dale Ann Bradley)
13. HE UNDERSTANDS (Barry Scott & Dale Ann Bradley)
14. SAILING ON (Russell Moore & Dale Ann Bradley)
Les Butler, Syndicated Radio Host, Front Porch Fellowship / Singing News Magazine said, “Add simple Christian lyrics to some high powered singing and playing and you’ve got an equation for success!”
“LOOK TO THE LIGHT” will be available nationwide at top bluegrass locations including iTunes, Amazon.com, Ernest Tubb Record Shops, County Sales, Music Shed, Rural Rhythm Records and more.
First title from Rural Rhythm Record’s new Gospel Label RURAL RHYTHM CHRISITIAN – “Dedicated to creating fine inspirational Christian Music from America’s Heartland”
Emerging from the Stanley Brothers’ Clinch Mountain Boys band, Larry Sparks carries on with the sounds created by Bluegrass music’s first generation and has always intended to let his music speak for itself—but for those who listen, it has told a story that runs like an unbroken thread through more than 40 years of bluegrass history.
Named as the IBMA (International Bluegrass Music Association) “Male Vocalist of the Year” in 2004 and 2005—and as winner of both “Album of the Year” and “Recorded Event of the Year” honors in 2007 —the Legendary veteran Larry Sparks kicks off the new Gospel Label RURAL RHTYHM CHRISTIAN (Rural Rhythm Records) with his new release “I Just Want To Thank You Lord”. “Lost, found and improved with a fresh new life” is how Larry describes the release of this Gospel album. Originally recorded several years ago with his band The Lonesome Ramblers, Larry Sparks wanted to record a very special gospel album that would address the spiritual needs of everyday people with songs that touch your heart, inspire your life and faith !
“Having this album be the first album release on the new Rural Rhythm Christian label is a Blessing and a real stoke of good timing “, says Larry. Releasing 8 highly successful gospel albums over the past 40 years, Larry Sparks has been very hands on in the development of this new release including going back into the studio and creating a new soulful ballad version of the title track “I Just Want To Thank You Lord” and supervising the song sequencing, mastering, packaging and serving as album producer.
When Larry Sparks sings…his voice commands your attention! When you combine his vocals, passion and faith which pour out on these 12 hand-picked gospel songs, then you have a very special gospel album and a fan favorite.
“Larry Sparks is my all-time favorite traditional bluegrass singer. He’s never better than when he’s singing Gospel music.”
Les Butler, Syndicated Radio Show Host, Front Porch Fellowship, Singing News Magazine
Rural Rhythm Records is proud to announce LARRY SPARKS will appear during the National Quartet Convention (NQC), gospel music’s largest annual event, held at the Kentucky Fair & Expo Center in Louisville, KY September 13-19, 2009. Sparks will perform Thursday, September 17, 2009 during the Bluegrass Pickin’ Jamboree, hosted by Les Butler at the Freedom Hall between 2:00 – 3:15 p.m. The Jamboree will include the Front Porch Fellowship Bluegrass Gospel Fan Awards where Sparks is one of five nominated for the Impact Award, given to secular artists contributing to bluegrass gospel music.
Les Butler, host of the Front Porch Fellowship Syndicated Radio Show, as well as the NQC Bluegrass Jamboree, stated, “I am especially excited about this year’s special guest. Larry Sparks is my favorite traditional bluegrass lead singer. It’s obvious to me that bluegrass gospel music is special to him. This is going to be an extraordinary Jamboree.”
Named as the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA)) Male Vocalist of the Year (2004, 2005) and winner of both IBMA Album of the Year and IBMA Recorded Event of the Year honors in 2007, legendary veteran Larry Sparks kicks off the new RURAL RHTYHM CHRISTIAN label with his new release “I Just Want To Thank You Lord” on October 20, 2009.
For more information on the National Quartet Convention, please visit www.natqc.com or call toll-free 800-846-8499.
Earlier this year, Rural Rhythm Records announced the first music from their newly formed RURAL RHYTHM CHRISTIAN label – the digital release of “Amazing Grace,” produced and performed by acclaimed vocalist, Carrie Hassler. Now the label is proud to announce the first full album releases appearing on the new arm of the label: The October 20, 2009 album release of “I Just Want to Thank You Lord” by Larry Sparks and the October 27, 2009 release of “Blue Ridge Mountain Memories, 20 Gospel Favorites (Yesterday & Today)” by The Marksmen Quartet.
Named as the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA)) Male Vocalist of the Year in 2004 and 2005, and winner of both IBMA Album of the Year and IBMA Recorded Event of the Year honors in 2007, legendary veteran Larry Sparks kicks off the new RURAL RHYTHM CHRISTIAN label with his new release “I Just Want To Thank You Lord.” “Having this album as the first album release on the new Rural Rhythm Christian label is a blessing and a real stoke of good timing,” says Larry. “Lost, found and improved with a fresh new life” is how he describes this album recorded several years ago with his band, The Lonesome Ramblers. Larry has been very hands on in the development of this new release including going back into the studio and creating a new soulful ballad version of the title track. He also supervised the song sequencing, mastering, packaging, plus served as album producer.
The Marksmen Quartet’s “Blue Ridge Mountain Memories, 20 Gospel Favorites (Yesterday & Today)” was produced by Mark Wheeler who joined his Dad and Marksmen patriarch, Earle Wheeler over 40 years ago. During their incredible career, The Marksmen Quartet has received a long list of awards and honors, including, but not limited to: a 2008 Dove Nomination for their Rural Rhythm Records album, “God’s Masterpiece;” 2007 Top Male Artist (Mark Wheeler) by the Gospel Music Awards (Front Porch Fellowship Bluegrass); 4-time winners of Country Gospel Quartet of the Year by the Country Gospel Music Guild; 4-time winners of the SPBGMA Bluegrass Gospel Group of the Year; several #1 country gospel songs including “Love Letters in the Sand” that appears on this album; Gospel Hall of Fame honor by the Texas Country Music Association; and so many more.
In 2010, Rural Rhythm Records will be celebrating 55 Years of creating quality Bluegrass, Country, Roots and Gospel music from rural America. “Counting the many blessings that we have received throughout our lives has led us to this decision and direction to begin the Rural Rhythm Christian label. The ability to spread inspiration through music to uplift our daily lives is one way we can give back and share our faith,” said Sam and Pam Passamano. Rural Rhythm Christian – Dedicated to creating fine inspirational Christian Music from America’s Heartland.