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Carolina the Band Releases New American Classics Records with Club44 Records

Nashville, TN – In an effort to preserve the American Songbook, and provide a home for artists who represent this timeless music, Club44 Records was established in 2019. Since the company’s formation, Club44 has served as the creative home for many singers, instrumentalists and writers dedicated to maintaining the legacy that shaped American culture. Club44 continues to offer even more diversity and musical enjoyment as they present the July 1 release of Turn – A Legacy of American Songs from Carolina The Band.

Carolina The Band originally formed in 2006, following the official retirement of the Melody Masters Quartet, a name synonymous with Southern Gospel Music. Legendary names such as James “Big Chief” Wetherington, Jake Hess and Wally Varner at one time or another were members of Melody Masters. That rich tradition was carried on by Scott Whitener, Roger Burnett and Chris Roberts in a very popular and critically-acclaimed version of MMQ during the late 1990s. One by one, MMQ members began to retire and following a brief Reunion Tour in 2004 and 2005, Whitener, Burnett and Roberts decided to launch a new endeavor that became known as Carolina.

Today, Carolina The Band is breaking new ground with songs that celebrate faith, family and freedom. With this new release, Turn – A Legacy of American Songs, the 2020 Diamond Award Best New Artist winner delivers classic songs from the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s that take each listener back to a simpler time. The recording features a timeless repertoire of great American songs, held together by progressive arrangements and rich vocal harmony.

The title cut, “Turn! Turn! Turn! (To Everything There is A Season),” made popular by The Byrds in the 1960s, shares the message of the third chapter of Ecclesiastes. “The first eight verses of the third chapter of Ecclesiastes seem like the unlikely text for a global hit song from the late ‘50s,” explains group member Scott Whitener, “but that’s exactly what folk icon Pete Seeger came up with when he wrote the song. Once the ‘60s rolled around, the song struck a chord with audiences during those turbulent times, and the song became a career-defining hit for The Byrds.” Decades later, the cry for peace feels just as poignant and timely as Carolina The Band recreates the magic and reverence of the song.

“Turn! Turn! Turn!” is one of nine cuts Carolina The Band chose for this musical walk down memory lane. Other popular tunes include “I Can’t Stop Loving You,” “Green, Green Grass of Home,” “Little Green Apples” and “Carolina In The Morning,” just to name a few. “When we decided to record an album of iconic songs from the American songbook, ‘Carolina In The Morning’ was one of the first we selected,” Whitener shares. “Dean Martin, Doris Day, Judy Garland and so many others have cemented the song’s place in musical history, and we chose it not just because of the geographical ties, but because we really wanted to give it male harmonies and a unique arrangement, somewhat different from other versions recorded by so many music icons.”

Club44 Co-Owner and Producer Wayne Haun shared his sentiments for both the songs and the recording, “Listening to this record reminds me of being in the back of my parents car in the 1970s, listening to the radio. These songs shaped me. I’m sure I’m not the only one. I know you’ll enjoy listening to it as much as we enjoyed recording it!”

Refreshing and unique arrangements and iconic classics promise to provide hours of listening delight to audiences who add this collection to their playlist, as Carolina The Band pays tribute to songs that helped pave the way in American musical history, while celebrating family, faith, freedom and the familiarity of home.

Turn – The Legacy of American Songs is distributed digitally by Green Hill Productions/ Universal Music Group and to retail outlets by Provident/Sony. Pre-order at digital outlets here. 

Turn – A Legacy of American Songs Song List:

Turn! Turn! Turn! (To Everything There Is A Season)

I Can’t Stop Loving You

Green, Green Grass Of Home

Little Green Apples

Home On The Range

Carolina In The Morning

If I Had My Druthers

Tie A Yellow Ribbon ‘Round The Ole Oak Tree

I’d Like To Teach The World To Sing (In Perfect Harmony)

ABOUT CAROLINA THE BAND:

Carolina The Band was birthed from the extremely popular Melody Masters Quartet, who rose to fame in the ‘50s and ‘60s when its members included the likes of legendary singers like Jake Hess, Big Chief Wetherington and Wally Varner. The group’s musical legacy was one that spanned six decades until long-time group members retired and eventually reunited as Carolina. Each group member possesses decades of musical experience, yet collectively, as Carolina, in 2020 they were honored with the Diamond Award for Best New Artist. Each year they perform in excess of 80 concert in churches, theaters and auditoriums, sharing the rich tradition that began more than a half century ago.

ABOUT CLUB44 RECORDS:

Based in the Music City of Nashville, Tennessee, CLUB44 is a new independent label which aims to highlight the Broadway, cabaret and jazz genres, preserve the American Songbook, and provide a home for artists who represent this timeless music. Following their premiere studio release, Christmas at Birdland, the label has presented Love Notes, the latest album from Tony Award and Golden Globe winner Linda Lavin; Billy’s Place from Grammy Award winner Billy Stritch; Act One from rising vocal star Nicolas King; Jane Monheit’s Come What May, which celebrates the international Billboard #1 pop/jazz vocalist’s 20th anniversary as a recording artist; Spencer Day’s Broadway by Day, highlighting creative arrangements of theater standards; and Carol Sloane’s Live at Birdland, an intimate set captured at the legendary venue. Club44 Records also serves as the creative home of many other singers, instrumentalists and writers. All releases are distributed digitally through Green Hill Productions/ Universal Music Group and to retail outlets by Provident/Sony. Club44Records.com 

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Absolutely Gospel Music
Formed over 19 years ago by Deon & Susan Unthank originally as SoGospelNews.com, the site was birthed from an email discussion group by the same name. The SoGospelNews email discussion list was created by the Unthanks after the Singing News shut down its extremely popular discussion list. SoGospelNews started as a simple webpage listing artists, fans, individuals, etc. that were avid supporters of the newly formed SoGospelNews talk list. The site eventually took on printing news for Southern Gospel artists, and eventually took on reviewing the latest recordings from both signed and independent artists within the small genre. SoGospelNews became the most viewed Southern Gospel website on the Internet with over 4,000,000 hits per month.

The Unthank family are now involved in the site, as well as the addition of over two dozen staff writers. The website is based out of Murfreesboro, Tennessee. In April 2010, SoGospelNews changed its name to AbsolutelyGospel.com. The name change allows them to cover news items of not only Southern Gospel, but also Country Gospel, Inspirational, and Black Gospel.

On January 5, 2011, Susan Unthank passed away, leaving the website in control of Deon, their son, Chris, and their daughter Amy.