Leon Ashley & Margie Singleton - Songs Of Faith: Gospel Relections

Published Tuesday 30th October 2018
Leon Ashley & Margie Singleton - Songs Of Faith: Gospel Relections
Leon Ashley & Margie Singleton - Songs Of Faith: Gospel Relections

STYLE: Country
RATING 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8
OUR PRODUCT CODE: 171436-27241
LABEL: Ashley
FORMAT: Cassette Album

Reviewed by Tony Cummings

If you're a long-time follower of country music, you'll know of the late Leon Ashley and his wife Margie Singleton (who is still alive and, amazingly - she's 83 - still making music). I'm not sure what formats this compilation was released on (mine's on cassette!) and some of the 20 tracks here feature early fadeouts to squeeze them all on. What these oldies demonstrate is that over the decades, Leon and Margie recorded some excellent gospel tracks, alongside their big mainstream country hits like "Keeping Up With The Joneses" (1964) and Bobbie Gentry's "Ode To Billie Joe" (1967). Margie is an inventive songwriter (one of her most attention-grabbing songs is the rockabilly-tinged "Jesus Is My Pusher") and an effective singer, while Leon sounds a bit like Johnny Cash. His rendition of the Bobby Goldsboro hit "Honey" and the much recorded gospel anthem penned by Stuart Hamblen "It Is No Secret" both work well. It has to be said that some of the accompaniments here are a little too cornball, with the most primitive of production values, and like most old-school country is unlikely to appeal to modern tastes brought up listening to the Rascall Flatts and Carrie Underwood. But if you're nostalgic for the old-school country or keen to explore country gospel's proud history, this is a collection well worth searching out on Amazon or wherever.

The opinions expressed in this article are not necessarily those held by Cross Rhythms. Any expressed views were accurate at the time of publishing but may or may not reflect the views of the individuals concerned at a later date.

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