Robert S. Arnold sang tenor with several quartets because he had a pure and high tone to his voice. But, throughout his very long Music career he was not known as much for his singing as for his songwriting and publishing. Traditional music groups and singing conventions across the South still sing his song, No Tears In Heaven, written in 1935.
Gene ‘Buddy’ Campbell grew up singing with his family who are also inductees of the TGMHF, The Campbell Family. It was not unusual for Gospel singing families to produce a standout vocalist who would have his own career as a “quartet man” – Buddy was that man! He went on to sing with The Jubilee Quartet, The Inspirationals Quartet, one of the many Stamps Quartets and The Men of Music.
Merle Conn Longnecker [1927-2017] was the first woman to be inducted in the TGMHF. She grew up singing with her family in East Texas and eventually gained notoriety along with her two sisters and three brothers. When she was 19, Albert E. Brumley, writer of I’ll Fly Away, asked her to introduce his newest song, If We Never Meet Again, later made famous by Johnny Cash and Elvis Presley. Throughtout her life she sang on Gospel Music stages, in churches, on radio and on television all over the United States with the Conn Family, The Sunnysiders and Merle & The Gospel Four.
When the TGMHF began inducting music groups in 2005 (mostly quartets), near the top of the list of Texas favorites was the Rangers Quartet. Formed by two brothers from Italy Texas, Arnold and Vernon Hyles started the quartet after attending the Stamps-Baxter School of Music in Dallas. In 1936 The Rangers worked as Good Will Ambassadors for the Texas Centennial Celebration at the State Fair. For this work the Governor, James Allred, commissioned them as Honorary Texas Rangers (the name stuck). Also in the group were Walter Leveritt, Denver Crumpler and pianist David Reece. They were one of the first professional music groups in Gospel Music traveling all across the country and making live radio appearances from Georgia to Kansas to Texas.
Larry Scott was inducted in 2007. His career as a radio personality goes back to the early 1950s. Larry has as many fans and friends in Country Music and Texas Western Swing as he does in Gospel Music. He was a favorite Emcee at a variety of awards shows and concerts along the way. He was the weekly Emcee for the Johnnie High Country Music Revue for most of the 1980s. He hosted a number of radio programs through the years, but for a long time before his passing in 2015, he produced a show called “Singin’ and Swingin” that was heard in numerous radio markets across the Southwest. His wife Gail still preserves the work and legacy of Larry though an impressive collection of photographs and memorabilia.
Joe Atkinson was inducted in 1998 at the very special celebration of his 40th Anniversary of music ministry. This photo shows Calvin holding the “Texas shaped” plaque in his hand as he prepares to present it Joe. Of the many Southern Baptist Music Evangelist in Texas, Joe has performed all styles and genres of Gospel Music. In 2008 he marked his 50th year and is still singing across America and the world in places like India, Russia and the Middle East. In 2016 his wife Judy passed on to her heavenly home. She served as Joe’s partner in life and ministry through all those years focusing on the blessed GOSPEL in the MUSIC we love. Joe lives in Arlington and has numerous recordings and videos available.
Harold & Jean Marshall were inducted into the TGMHF on August 2011. The ceremony was held at their internationally recognized gospel music concert series LAKE COUNTRY JUBILEE, onstage of the magnificent Terrell Performing Arts Center, Terrell, Texas. In 1991,Harold and Jean began this concert series as a Sunday School class fund- raiser to help build a new church auditorium. Later, when the concerts outgrew the new facility, this dedicated couple moved them to the Greenville Civic Center, and then to the Municipal Auditorium. In 2005, Lake Country Jubilee moved to the current venue at Terrell, and continues the heritage of presenting top talent to a huge fan base, plus multiple church groups, who support this couple and their efforts. A veteran of radio promotion, Harold Marshall is highly recognized and uses all areas of technology in promoting gospel music. He pilots his own plane, and he and Jean travel to major gospel music events. In 2013 at the premier Cathedral Quartet Reunion, he was presented with the very first “Promoters Award.” The gospel music industry treasures the efforts of this great couple, and Texas is extremely proud of these prestigious inductees into the Texas Gospel Music Hall Of Fame.
Dallas grew up in Minnesota but gladly proclaims, “Like the bumper sticker says: I wasn’t born in Texas, but I got here as fast as I could”. That fun spirit and amazing talent were on display at DBU in 2007 when Dallas and his wife, Linda were on hand for his induction into the Texas Gospel Music Hall of Fame.
The special gift that Dallas has as a singer and songwriter has blessed tens of thousands of people for over four decades. He is still considered one of the early pioneers of what became known as Contemporary Christian Music (CCM). In 1970 he began working with David Wilkerson in his youth crusade ministry and during that time he formed Dallas Holm and Praise. They became the first CCM group to receive an RIAA certified Gold Album for their “live” album that contained the song: Rise Again. That band toured for eleven years and included another TGMHF inductee, Ladonna Gatlin Johnson.
Dallas has been featured on many of Bill Gaither’s Homecoming Videos in recent years. His original music and arrangements are as varied as the many styles in the great State of Texas: blues, country, pop and even reggae. His musical influence on younger generations and full-time music ministry with Linda carries on even today all across the U. S. and several foreign countries.
When the Stamps Quartet began their live radio program on KRLD out of Dallas, Texas, there was a famously recognized piano arpeggio that started every show: Marion Snider rolled an ascending F7 chord that introduced “Give The World A Smile”! That opening signature song was heard all across the country for many years as southern style gospel quartet music was growing in popularity. Marion had established himself as a talented pianist in his teens and following those early days with several of the Stamps-Baxter groups in the 40’s and 50’s he continued to work with a number of nationally known quartets. He also performed with his own group on a Sunday morning television program in Dallas and has been a strong supporter and promoter of southern gospel music for his entire life.
Glenn Sessions was born in the little country town of Kerans, Texas. Like many of our Texas music heroes, his love for music began in childhood, so in his teenage years he started singing with a male quartet from Weatherford. Then around 1939 he joined the Smile A While Quartet with a man named Deacon Utley from Macon, Georgia. In 1942 he moved to Detroit, Michigan to sing in a family group with his future father-in-law, Kelly Campbell. His involvement there was short, because that same year he joined the Air Force and served until 1944.
Following his military service he married Wilma Campbell in Detroit and returned to Dallas in 1946. Soon he was asked to sing with the Stamps-Baxter Menís Quartet and also began working in the bindery for Stamps-Baxter Music Company.
In the early 1950ís Glenn formed the Big State Quartet in Dallas – a very good menís quartet that gained an early following. But, in 1953 Glenn was asked to sing lead for the Rangers Quartet, a well-established group that had become very popular all across the South. Glenn eventually returned to the Stamps Menís Quartet to finish out the 50ís.
From 1983 until his death in 2001 Glenn sang with a very popular group in the North Texas area – the Gospel Lights. Headed up by pioneer, Cecil Pollock, the group had a passion for traditional four part harmonies and sang traditional classic quartet music as well as, new songs with a classic style