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Written by Dr. James Goff, Jr.

FINALLY! Comprehensive and richly illustrated, this new 394-page soft-cover book, "Close Harmony" traces the development of the music known as Southern Gospel from its antebellum origins to its twentieth-century emergence as a vibrant musical industry driven by the world of radio, television, recordings and concert promotions. Marked by smooth, tight harmonies and a lyrical focus on the message of Christian salvation, Southern Gospel, particularly the white gospel quartet tradition, had its roots in nineteenth-century shaped-note singing. Close Harmony is filled with stories of artists and groups such as Frank Stamps, the Chuck Wagon Gang, the Blackwood Brothers, the Rangers, the Swanee River Boys, the Statesmen and the Oak Ridge Boys. The book also explores changing relations between black and white artists and shows how, following the civil rights movement, white gospel was influenced by black gospel, bluegrass, rock, metal and rap. The author, James R. Goff, Jr, is professor of history at Appalachian State University in Boone, NC. He also serves as the chief historical consultant for the Southern Gospel Music Hall Of Fame And Museum in Pigeon Forge, TN, and is a regular columnist for Singing News magazine. This is a book any true Southern Gospel fan will find thoroughly fascinating! (See the audio recordings listings for a companion CD of great classic songs.)