My bride and I got to experience the New South Gospel Show last week and what a wonderful experience it was! Gospel music in a Branson show is not unusual and Branson has a number of pure gospel shows, but, in my opinion, this show stands alone for a number of reasons. Here are five of those reasons:
- Uniqueness: This, once a week Thursday afternoon show, is the only Branson gospel show performed by a cast who also regularly performs in one of Branson’s most popular non-gospel evening shows. The stars of New South Gospel also star in the Grand Jubilee show at 7:30 PM, every evening of the week, except Sunday.
- Great Gospel and Inspirational Music: From the opening number, “Gonna Be Some Changes Made,” to the finale, “Statue of Liberty,” this show is filled with a wonderful variety of gospel and inspirational music including such favorites as “Havin’ A Little Talk With Jesus,” “When the Roll Is Called Up Yonder,” “The Lighthouse,” “Peace In the Valley,” “Low Down the Chariot,” “He,” “Chariots of Fire,” and many more.
- Award Winning Cast: In a town filled with top notch talent, it is certainly worth noting that this cast is one of the most awarded of any show in Branson. Among others, these awards include:
New South, composed of David Ragan, Lead Vocalist; Luke Menard, Tenor; Jon Drockelman, Baritone; and Mark McCauley, Bass, has won the “Branson Quartet of the Year” and “Branson Gospel Group of the Year.”
Jackie Brown, Female Vocalist, has won the “Branson Female Vocalist of the Year,”
Jamie Haage as “Jim Dandy,” has won “Branson Comedian of the Year.”
The Grand Band, composed of Tracy Heaston, Piano/Keyboard & Music Director; Wayne Massengale, Fiddle and Acoustic Guitar; Larry Allred, Bass Guitar; Rob Blackburn, Drums; Gene Mulvaney, Steel Guitar; and Chad Cathell, Lead Guitar; has not only won “Branson Band of the Year,” but individual awards for “Fiddle Player of the Year,” “Piano Player of the Year, “Drummer of the Year,” “Guitar Player of the Year,” and “Steel Guitar Player of the Year.”
- As Entertaining As It Is Inspirational: Producer Mike Patrick and Associate Producer Andy Holloway have produced a show that combines the exceptional talent, personality, and spirit of its cast with some of the greatest gospel and inspirational music of all time, colorful costuming, and a dash of “prayerful” comedy into a total experience that is as entertaining as it is inspirational. Whether it’s one of my favorites such as New South singing “Glory Road,” David Ragan’s featured solo of “The Light House,” Jackie Brown’s beautiful performance of “He,” Jim Dandy’s funny illustration on “answered prayer,” Tracy Heaston and the Grand Band’s magnificent rendition of “Chariots of Fire,” or any one of many others, this show seamlessly moves from one exciting, inspirational and entertaining moment to another.
- A Special Spirit: Sitting in the friendly comfort of the Grand Country Music Hall, surrounded with people who were there to share in an afternoon of gospel music, and hearing words being sung from the mouths of performers, some of whom I know personally, that I believe expresses what they feel in their hearts, filled me with peace and a special spirit. I just have to feel that I was not the only one who felt that way.
For additional information or tickets for The New South Gospel Show, please feel free to contact the Branson Tourism Center, one of Branson’s largest and most respected vacation planning services by calling 1-800-785-1550 or visiting www.BransonTourismCenter.com.