Monday, 12 August 2013

Harry Ironside's advice to gospel singers, and 'My Ain Countrie'

'... Ira D. Sankey I heard twice only. He was not with Mr. Moody at the meetings I have referred to, but he visited Oakland and San, Francisco in 1897, and I heard him in both cities. I shall never forget how he moved a great audience gathered to hear Henry Varley, as he sang, for the first time on the Pacific Coast, "Saved by grace." Other hymns that he brought out with him, that were new in those days, were, "There'll be no dark valley when Jesus comes," and, "Let the blessed sunshine in."

And, of course, he sang, "There were Ninety and Nine," as only he could sing it. I have never heard anyone else who seemed to put into it what he did, and who made it so appealing and impressive. In each meeting he sang by special request, "My Ain Countree," and told how he found it and how he came to use it. Since I myself am of Scotch extraction, I think I enjoyed this most of all.

One trouble with many modern gospel soloists is, there is too little gospel and too much solo. The tendency is to perform instead of endeavoring to give a spiritual message. If either preacher or singer is more concerned about drawing attention to himself than exalting Christ and reaching the consciences of his hearers, he fails utterly in his service ...'

- from this website.