New Gospel Album Released from Larry Sparks.
Just like the aged wooden siding of the church on the cover of the new CD Ministry In Song, Larry Sparks has stood the test of time. With the release of this, his newest recording, the soulful singer and guitarist observes his fifty-eighth year as a professional musician. For the occasion he fills a long overdue need of providing his fans with a collection of gospel songs. By his own admission, “it’s my first all-sacred recording in over a decade.”
Sparks is, of course, no stranger to bluegrass. He came of age in the middle and late 1960s as a member of the Stanley Brothers and, immediately following that, as the lead singer in Ralph Stanley’s Clinch Mountain Boys. Since 1970, he has led his own group, The Lonesome Ramblers. Longevity has its rewards. He is a two-time winner of the IBMA award for Male Vocalist of the Year and in 2015 he joined other legends of bluegrass as an inductee to the IBMA Hall of Fame.
Bluegrass entertainers perform gospel music for a variety of reasons. For some, gospel is a time-honored tradition that is popular with their fans. For others, like Larry Sparks, it is an extension of their core beliefs.
I serve a great God and through the name of His Son and our Savior Jesus Christ, I pray these songs will be a blessing to you – Larry Sparks.
New material on the new disc comes in the form of Larry’s own “Lord, Show Me the Way” and a trio of selections by aspiring writer Daniel Crabtree: “Don’t Take Your Eyes Off of Jesus,” “Holdin’ On,” and “All Over Me.” Crabtree started writing songs to perform with his church group, the Lights Chapel Boys. After he pitched them his first song, “they told me they thought it was pretty good… that gave me the encouragement to try to write some more.” Noting that he “writes most of my songs from personal experience,” the Greenbrier, Tennessee picker now has over fifty songs to his credit and is a wellspring of new material for veteran artists such as Larry Sparks.
Giving his followers a touch of something old with the new, Larry dusted off a few fan-favorites that have been unavailable for some time: Where We’ll Never Say Farewell, King Jesus, and Thank You Lord. He also dipped into the well of country music classics with songs by Hank Williams to include House of Gold and I Saw the Light and former Louisiana governor Jimmie Davis with Someone to Care and To My Mansion in the Sky.
Lending excellent support throughout Ministry In Song are band members Evan Wilson on mandolin, Jacob Wright on banjo, and Larry D. Sparks (Larry’s son) on bass. IBMA-award-winning multi-instrumentalist Ron Stewart and former Ralph Stanley sideman John Rigsby add their talents as guests on the record.
To stream or purchase Ministry In Song on your platform of choice click here.
Track List Larry Sparks , Ministry in Song:
|1. Don’t Take Your Eyes Off of Jesus
2. House of Gold
3. Where We’ll Never Say Farewell
4. King Jesus
5. Holdin’ On
6. Thank You Lord
|7. Lord, Show Me the Way
8. Someone to Care
9. To My Mansion in the Sky
10. Jesus Won’t You Guide Me
11. All Over Me
12. I Saw the Light