The Gospel Collection

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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - David McGee
Billy Sherrill was coaxed out of retirement to produce his buddy George Jones's double-CD The Gospel Collection, and the resulting music -- powerful and stirring -- honors the best in both men's legendary work. Possum isn't going through the motions here: He unabashedly asserts the conviction and deep feeling of a true believer in the song selections. When it gets down to brass tacks, however, he stays close to his honky-tonk meal ticket, his iconoclastic phrasings blurring the line between the blues and hard country while a small combo of seasoned Nashville session players provide the twang of the guitar, the cascading notes of the saloon piano, and the cry of the pedal...
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - David McGee
Billy Sherrill was coaxed out of retirement to produce his buddy George Jones's double-CD The Gospel Collection, and the resulting music -- powerful and stirring -- honors the best in both men's legendary work. Possum isn't going through the motions here: He unabashedly asserts the conviction and deep feeling of a true believer in the song selections. When it gets down to brass tacks, however, he stays close to his honky-tonk meal ticket, his iconoclastic phrasings blurring the line between the blues and hard country while a small combo of seasoned Nashville session players provide the twang of the guitar, the cascading notes of the saloon piano, and the cry of the pedal steel. But this is a classic Sherrill production, with an orchestra, strings, and rich harmonies anchoring the meditative numbers and enhancing the toe-tappers with lofty grandeur. The 24 songs feature fewer enduring warhorses such as "Amazing Grace" and Thomas A. Dorsey's "Peace in the Valley" than bedrock Baptist hymns -- the older the better. Jones takes "Where We'll Never Grow Old" at a slow, deliberate pace, transforming its images of heavenly reconciliation into something far bluesier than most congregations ever hear. And it's a good bet that the hymn of invitation "Softly and Tenderly" isn't usually performed with Floyd Cramer–style "slip note" piano fills and pungent, top-strings guitar solos. But the text is the thing here, and Jones's treatment of these sacred themes is so beautiful it almost defies description. You can take the honky-tonker out of church, but you can't take the church out of the honky-tonker. Somebody say amen to that.
All Music Guide - Thom Jurek
In 2003, could there be anything more desirable in country music than George Jones reunited with "retired" producer Billy Sherrill? Hardly. Some will complain that the pair should have worked on an album of countrypolitan or love or drinking songs instead of a two-CD, 24-track collection of gospel tunes, but that's just cryin' in their beer. After all, this is a George Jones record, and there isn't a thing the man sings that doesn't have the weathered sound of whiskey, women, and toil in the honky tonks. Jones was supposedly inspired to make this recording during his long recovery from a serious car wreck and a subsequent case of pneumonia. Musically, the material is choice, striking, moving, and full of emotion. Jones is incapable of singing gospel music without emotion. The set is split along traditionals such as "Amazing Graze," "Just a Closer Walk With Thee," "Swing Low, Sweet Chariot," "Peace in the Valley," "The Old Rugged Cross," and about eight others, and classic country gospel tunes like Stuart Hamblen's "It Is No Secret," Cleavant Derricks' "Just a Little Talk With Jesus," the Vaughan/Rowe staple "If I Could Hear My Mother Pray Again," and the Jimmie Davis/Jack Campbell stalwart "I Know a Man Who Can." What matters ultimately is the performance, though, since Jones has released other gospel collections on various labels. Sherrill's silky soundscapes add a lot to Jones' voice, which is no longer the instrument it once was. There is no doubt he is still a great singer, but his ability to throw his voice around and hit the higher notes in his baritone register is all but gone. With his more limited stylistic vernacular, however, Jones digs deep and gets the tunes across, making them swing and sway with emotion and honky tonk swagger. The edges one can hear now are far from crags and they do add a certain hard-won wisdom and change to his sound, but one can't help but miss the smooth delivery of his earlier years. Nonetheless, these songs ring truer than any collection of gospel music Jones has ever released, thanks to Sherrill being able to get the finest performance possible out of him. If you had to pick one Jones gospel record, it should be this one, hands down.
Blender - Alan Light
What makes Jones country's greatest male voice is that he sings like melody is his true religion.

What makes Jones country's greatest male voice is that he sings like melody is his true religion.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 4/1/2003
  • Label: Rca
  • UPC: 078636706320
  • Catalog Number: 67063

Album Credits

Performance Credits
George Jones Primary Artist, Guitar, Vocals
Mylon LeFevre Background Vocals
Glen Duncan Fiddle
Gary Prim Keyboards
Eddie Bayers Drums
J.T. Corenflos Electric Guitar
Paul Franklin Steel Guitar
Mark Ivey Background Vocals
Brent Mason Electric Guitar
Louis Dean Nunley Background Vocals
Michael Rhodes Bass
Gordon Stoker Background Vocals
Bruce Watkins Acoustic Guitar
Bergen White Background Vocals
John Willis Electric Guitar
Curtis Young Background Vocals
Reggie Young Electric Guitar
Ray C. Walker Background Vocals
Shemekia Copeland Background Vocals
Barry Charles Background Vocals
Michael Black Background Vocals
Technical Credits
Johann Pachelbel Composer
Jimmie Davis Composer
J.J. Cale Composer
Claude Gray Composer
Stuart Hamblen Composer
William Shakespeare Hays Composer
Walt Breeland Composer
Paul Buskirk Composer
John Newton Composer
Billy Sherrill Producer
Bob Warren Composer
Rev. Thomas A. Dorsey Composer
Albert E. Brumley Composer
Vestal Goodman Arranger
M. Christian Composer
Ira F. Stanphill Composer
Tony Castle Engineer
Joseph Scriven Composer
George Bennard Composer
Charles C. Converse Composer
Cleavant Derricks Composer
Danny Walls Composer
James C. Moore Composer
Traditional Composer
Elisha A. Hoffman Composer
James Rowe Composer
James W. Vaughan Composer
Jack Campbell Composer
C. Austin Miles Composer
Astrid Herbold May Art Direction
Billy April Composer
A. J. Showalter Composer
Will L. Thompson Composer
Daniel Cole grooming
Charles William Fry Composer
Hank Williams Mastering
C. Derricks Composer
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Customer Reviews

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( 1 )
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    My Grandfather wrote I Know A Man Who Can

    Hello. I loved George Jones verison of I Know A Man Who Can. My grandfather wrote the song years and years ago and he has song it just as long. I'm so glad George recorded it, so now the whole world can hear it.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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