The Forgotten Cathedrals Tenor?

Bobby Clark, Mack Taunton, Roy Tremble, Kirk Talley, Danny Funderburk, Kurt Young, Ernie Haase.  Who is missing?  The answer is Roger Horne, who sang from 1971-1972 with the group, and was present on their Welcome To Our World LP, as well as on the jackets for a couple of Vista compilations: Right On and  Request Time.  Roger also appeared regularly with the group on the Gospel Singing Jubilee, and is prominently featured on the Gaither compilation videos of that show.

So why does he seem to be totally forgotten?  He was there longer than Kurt Young, but I would guess more people have heard of Young than Horne.  Roger Horne had a full, high tenor voice, and came to the Cathedrals from the Gospel Harmony Boys in Huntington, WV.  After leaving the Cathedrals, he formed his own trio.  Some of the highest arrangements the Cathedrals ever did were with Roger, and the version of George Younce’s classic “Yesterday” with Horne on the aforementioned LP is the best version I’ve heard.

When the Cathedrals released their reunion video years ago, Horne was one of three prominent complete omissions.  George Younce said from the stage that Danny Koker was not able to attend, but there is no mention anywhere of Bill Dykes, Steve Lee, or Roger Horne.  Young was also not mentioned, but he was with the Cathedrals for such a short time that it isn’t exactly surprising.  The others were members who appeared on recordings with the group.

So why is Roger Horne the “outcast” of Cathedral tenors?

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About Wes Burke
I'm a .NET developer and Southern Gospel music fan. Married with a wonderful family.

14 Responses to The Forgotten Cathedrals Tenor?

  1. John Crenshaw says:

    Thanks for mentioning Steve Lee. I think he was the second best baritone the Cats ever had – with Danny Koker being #1. Great guy and a great talent. I saw Steve recently. He has some health issues, but he’s still a very talented singer and pianist.

    • Jeffrey Reynolds says:

      Respectfully, Mark Trammell has to be 1 or 2 on the list of Cat’s baritones. He is the standard by which great quartet baritones in the modern era are judged, in my opinion. His voice is unique among all the rest. Danny Koker or Scott Fowler have to fill the other slot.

  2. That’s an excellent question….I had the opportunity to hear the Cathedrals with Roger at Woodland Methodist Church in Morgantown, WV in 1972. That was a dyanamite group, but didn’t stay together very long (a year or so). I went to high school in Belle, WV with Roger’s brother Danny Horne (who was a good trumpet player)…..Danny died early in life from cancer if I remember. I talked with Roger that night I heard the Cathedrals about Danny,,,,,Roger was a very personable guy,,,He was great with the Gospel Harmony Boys too!!

  3. Samuel says:

    Don’t forget Steve Warren. He’s the ultimate in forgotten Cathedrals members. He played piano in 1970, and the only documented evidence is on their Facebook page.

  4. Roger Horne, the writer of “Sailing Away”. From what I heard about the Reunion gig, was that the tenure was to have been at least as many as 2 years of performance with The Cathedrals. The show was already planned to be long and epic, with a lot of great and different lineups, so I guess that was their way of simplifying and condensing it. But I guarantee that if Horne’s time there had been as significant as Gerald Wolfe’s, even if it were for a short period, he would’ve been there. But because his time was not as memorable as others, he ends up on a southern gospel blog of “Where Are They Now” and gives us something to talk about (good call Burke). Although a surprise may have been Lee. He’s said to have really helped shape that 80s sound more than we realize, even being very instrumental in finding and helping groom a young Roger Bennett at piano.

    • Wes Burke says:

      Good point FNR. I think Roger’s tenure and subsequent “legacy”, for lack of a better word, is hindered by the fact that the Cathedrals weren’t the “super group” that they would later become. That said, the lineup of Horne, Payne, Tremble, Younce, and Matthews to me is one of the best, and most underrated, lineups the Cathedrals ever put on stage. Watch “He’ll Soon Be Here” on one of those Gaither Gospel Singing Jubilee videos and you’ll see why.

  5. Samuel says:

    Lorne Matthews was crazy amazing. A great sing and a great pianist. Listening to him on their “Live” album from 1979, Lorne sounds like Roger Bennett when he talks, but his singing voice sounds like Glen. Maybe it’s a Canadian thing with him.
    He also has a good testimony to read.

  6. Paul Hoffman says:

    Roger was a friend of mine. We went to Marshall University in Huntington WV and had the same voice teacher, Dr. Paul Balshaw. We sang in choirs together and operas. Roger could vocalize off the top of the piano keyboard. One day at the end of college Roger said to me, “Goodbye Paul”. I said something like ” yea see ya”. Roger called me over and reminded me we were friends and probably would never see each other again. I never forgot that. He was a cou[le years older and wiser and I was barely 22. I never forgot him. A really great person.

    • Roger L Horne says:

      Paul, It really is a small world, and Thanks for the kind words. Yes….it’s me – Roger Horne. I’m living in Franklin, TN now; just south of Nashville. I miss those days too, and I especially miss those days with the Cathedrals. We did have a great group, but it was great only because God blessed our brief but annointed ministry. I don’t get to sing much anymore. Probably because most people think I’m dead, but no I’m still here! God has blessed me in so many ways, but particularly with my songwriting. By the way; I wrote He’ll Soon Be Here. It was the first of many songs to do well for me. Stay in touch and Thanks again for remembering. Roger

  7. I found the Steve Warren picture on Steve’s personal web site, and put it on the Cathedrals page. I think he said he was just a fill in for like 2 weeks. It was when Bobby Clark had come back to the group on tenor, and Roy Tremble was the baritone. Back then, the personnel was changing so much after they left the Cathedral Of Tomorrow, that members just came and went. Eventually, George Amon Webster came back on baritone, and Roy moved up to tenor, and they had a set lineup. I just kinda fazed Roger, Jim and others into an “others” category on the Cathedrals fb, because I’m not as familiar with that time period, and they just came and went. I did give the actual Cathedral members who are on fb access to the page, so they could maybe fill in the missing details.

  8. Jeff says:

    Does anyone know if this is the Roger Horne who lived in South Florida and was associated with Gold Coast Christian School for a time? I went to school there in the mid 70s and he led music in the host church and in the school.

    • Roger L Horne says:

      Jeff, No…I wasn’t at the school or church in South Florida. I did serve as Minister of Music at a couple different churches back in the ’80’s, but that was after I came off the road. I’m retiring from Nationwide Ins. Co. in January after 30 yrs. of service. I have continued to write during those years, but not too much singing other than fill ins for the Stamps, Palmetto St. and a few others. Thanks, Roger Horne

  9. Alan Williamson says:

    Roger, my how time flys by! Remember the summer church camp meetings at the Nazarene Camp grounds in Summersville, WV? You sure knew how to upset the pastors back in those days when we were all kids. I kind of got in some “hot” times myself there on occasion and had to go have a “set down talk” with Rev Riffle so I didn’t get sent home. Back then a lot of us worked our way through camp by staying on the camp grounds and doing whatever needed to be done but all in all, it was something I looked forward to every summer. Danny Woolums and I were talking about you just last week and I’m trying to find an album of you and Becky singing and what we’re hoping to find is the song “He Kept On Loving me”. I can’t listen to that song without a tear rolling down my cheek and Danny’s the same way. If I can find the album I’ve got, I just hope it’s on there. Do you remember when you and Becky came to Walnut Hills Church of the Nazarene and sang for us? An absolutely beautiful Sunday and the two of you sure brought Heaven down to those of us lucky enough to be there. I sure didn’t realize at the time how those memories of church camp would come to mean so much to me in later years. Wish I had it all to do over and take some different paths with my life but like your song says, “He Kept On Loving Me, Just The Same”. How much more fortunate can we get? God Bless you and Becky always. A friend from the past, Alan Williamson

    • Roger Horne says:

      Hey Alan, you just made my day! I just stumbled onto your message; so I don’t know when you wrote it, but thanks for remembering, and yes I too remember those wonderful times at church camp. They helped shape and mold us into who and what we are today. If you will email me at Songsbyrlhorne@yahoo.com I’ll send you an mp3 copy of He Kept On Loving Me. We’ll talk more then. So good to hear from you. Your old friend, Roger

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