The Southern Gospel Music Guild (SGMG) recognized Bill and Gloria Gaither with the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award at a special VIP reception held during the 2008 National Quartet Convention. Newly elected SGMG President, Judy Nelon presented the honor where a group of industry friends and colleagues gathered to share in the special occasion.
The afternoon celebration included congratulations and numerous stories from Les Beasley, NQC Executive Vice-President Clarke Beasley, ASCAPs Dan Keen, Ken and Lisa Abraham, Ben Speer and Sue Dodge.
The Lifetime Achievement Award is given to an individual who exhibits and upholds the SGMG Mission Statement which states, With Jesus Christ as our cornerstone, to create a cooperative environment designed to encourage excellence, education, awareness and growth, while preserving the essence of Southern Gospel Music over a lifetime. Bill and Gloria concluded the event with separate speeches of appreciation to the southern gospel industry and the SGMG. The celebratory afternoon of recognition was sponsored by the National Quartet Convention.
Judy Nelon, SGMG president and organizer of the lifetime honor stated, “Having the opportunity to pay tribute and recognize Bill and Gloria Gaither for their significant contributions in southern gospel music is one of my greatest honors. It is impossible to separate one from the other as both Bill and Gloria have been successful in their collaborations together as well as individuals: by composing over 700 songs, performing with The Gaither Trio, Gaither Vocal Band and for over ten years now with the phenomena recognized around the world as the Gaither Video and Television series.
More than 40 years ago, they founded Gaither Music which includes publishing, copyright management, record labels, recording studios and concert tour management. Gloria has created The Gaither Family Resources; a model store for their visitors in their hometown, Alexandria, Indiana. No one on earth has done more for music than Bill and Gloria Gaither.”
This folows on from their DVD topping the Billboard’s Music Video chart a month after it’s release. The two-volume Country Bluegrass Homecoming DVDs stars world class artists from all three genres and hosted by gospel legend Bill Gaither, Country Bluegrass Homecoming Volumes 1 and 2 feature performances by Vince Gill, George Jones, Ralph Stanley, the Gaither Vocal Band, Marty Stuart, the Isaacs, Larry Sparks, the Grascals, Dailey and Vincent, and more than a dozen others.
“Country, bluegrass and gospel music are connected in many ways, but one common denominator is that most artists in these three genres got their start singing in church,” Gaither pointed out. “So when we all got together there was a wonderful sense of camaraderie. After bringing these talents together in an event that was so thoroughly enjoyable to create, it is especially gratifying to see that the public is responding so positively.”
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