2010 Gaither Homecoming: Variety of gospel music at the arena Saturday

By M. SCOTT MORRIS / NEMS Daily Journal

TUPELO – Gospel music will come in many flavors when the Gaither Homecoming Tour 2010 pulls into the BancorpSouth Arena.
Saturday’s concert will feature Southern gospel, along with country, bluegrass and contemporary. You’ll also find family-friendly comedy.
That’s all part of Bill Gaither’s plan.
“I grew up listening to music like that,” he said. “Maybe it’s because I’ve got a short attention span, but that’s how we like to do it.”
The show will include the Gaither Vocal Band, along with The Martins, Mark Lowry, Buddy Greene, Charlotte Ritchie and more.
“We’ll have Jason Crabb with us. He’s a wonderful new artist,” Gaither said during a call from his office in Alexandria, Ind. “The Isaacs, they are an interesting bluegrass group.”

Something new
Gaither, along with Lowry, Michael English, Wes Hampton and David Phelps, collectively known as the Gaither Vocal Band, will have news songs to perform.
On Aug. 10, the group released, “Greatly Blessed,” a 13-song collection of new recordings.
“We’ll definitely play our favorites. People always want to hear what they’re used to,” Gaither said, “but they also kind of say, ‘What do you have that’s new?’”
When bands come to Tupelo, they’re often tempted to sing an Elvis Presley tune. In this case, Elvis once covered a Gaither tune, “He Touched Me.”
“That was one of Elvis’ favorite songs,” Gaither said, adding that it’ll “probably” be performed on Saturday.

No ‘pie in the sky’
The music will come with a message, and Gaither said it’s a message worth hearing in these stressful times.
“I don’t think it’s pie in the sky. I don’t think we have our heads in the sand,” Gaither said. “I think it’s hopeful, but I do think it’s realistic, too.
“Christians go through the same things everyone else goes through. Hopefully, we go through it with a sense of joy, a sense of purpose.”
Everyone’s invited to experience the Gaither Homecoming, an old-fashioned gospel variety show.
“There will be some type of music that will be uplifting and interesting,” Gaither said. “What’s more, it’ll be fun. It’s a chance to have fun. Come on and come. We’ll have a great night.”

Contact M. Scott Morris at (662) 678-1589 or scott.morris@djournal.com.