IF YOU GO
■What: Singing Echoes' 44th anniversary Blue Springs Valley Singing.
■ When: 7 p.m. today, July 17; 6:45 p.m. Friday, July 18; and 6 p.m. Saturday, July 19 (different guest groups each night).
■ Where: Singing Echoes Park, 150 Bryson Lane, Cleveland, Tenn.
■ Admission: $13 nightly.
■ Phone: 423-472-2421.
■ Website: www.singingechoes.com.
■ Note: Bring your own seating or rent a folding chair for $1.
The Singing Echoes, a Grammy-nominated family of Southern gospel singers and musicians, are celebrating their 44th anniversary this week by hosting the annual Blue Springs Valley Singing at home base, Singing Echoes Park in Cleveland, Tenn.
The four-day event kicked off Wednesday, July 16, with Mallory Ledford, 2x2 Quartet and Meadow Lane in featured performances.
Still to come are some of the biggest names in gospel music the Watson Brothers Trio, Tony Gore and The Perrys today, July 17; Wilma Smith, Gold City and Karen Peck & New River on Friday, July 18; and The Songmen, Archie Watkins & Smoky Mountain Reunion and Primitive Quartet on Saturday, July 19. The hosts will perform each night.
According to the group's website, the family ensemble originated in 1970 with Lela and Max Epperson, their two sons, Lynn and Gary, and Gary's wife, Debbie. Max and Lela are now deceased, but their legacy lives on with Lynn, Gary and Debbie and the third and fourth generations of Eppersons: Jeremy, Joshua, Adam, Matthew and Jonah.
Their best-known songs include "It's Enough," "Think I'm Excited," "Somebody's Here" and "Wake Up To Sleep No More," which was nominated for a Grammy Award in 1973.
The anniversary singing is said to be one of the largest outdoor gospel singings in the Southeast. The park is equipped with camping facilities, shelters, concessions and the Singing Echoes Museum, which displays mementos of the group's history.