John Rulapaugh Announces Freedom Quartet

John Rulapaugh announced the formation of a new quartet tonight, Freedom Quartet.  Joining Rulapaugh at tenor will be Dale Shipley on lead, Preston Garner on baritone, and Burman Porter on bass.  Rulapaugh and Porter have a long history together both as original members of the Dove Brothers, and later with the Palmetto State Quartet.  Garner is a relative newcomer to the full time gospel music scene, but got a vote of confidence from former Won By One tenor and songwriter Ray Scarbrough.  I’ve long been a fan of Dale Shipley, and having him back in Southern Gospel music is quite thrilling news.  The group will soon begin work on their debut project, and will be booked by Mountain Top talent, a division of Michael Davis and Associates.

Here is the text of the release:

John Rulapaugh, founder of a group known for its dynamic energy and prowess, Freedom, raises the bar even higher, as he introduces Freedom Quartet.

The quartet’s new line up is the “creme dela creme” of Gospel music.
The new lead singer has an array of accolades and accomlishments and is best known for his days with the group, Perfect Heart.  He is Dale Shipley.
Filling the baritone position for the group is Preston Garner.  Garner is not only a notable vocalist with a vast array of experience. He is also a music minister and worship pastor and has a very clear understanding of leading an audience to the throne of God.
Taking the bass position is one of the most talented bass singers to grace a Gospel music stage.  He is none other than Burman Porter.
Along with the solid and seamless tenor singing of Rulapaugh, this combination is poised to be one of the most cutting edge and impacting Gospel music ministries of the decade.
“The departure of my friend Josh Garner from Freedom’s lineup left a great void, one that could not easily be filled,” shares Rulapaugh.  He continues, “Since the inception of Freedom, it was always our desire to have a great quartet. There have been several opportunities to make that move, but the timing was never right. Over the past few weeks the Lord has really made His plans evident in our lives and we are thrilled with the new starting place He has set for us. I couldn’t be more happy than with the addition of my old friend, Burman Porter, to the lineup of Freedom. Many will remember that Burman and I worked together on two previous occasions; First with The Dove Brothers Quartet and, then, with Palmetto State Quartet. There’s so much to tell about how this decision and direction unfolded…and not nearly enough space here to tell it all. Over the coming days and weeks I will share the details of how this all came to be. If you’re interested in the “back story,” visit and join our website.  You can sign up for free and receive all the latest news from the group.”
The group is partnered with a premiere booking agency, Mountain Top Talent (one entity of the mutil-faceted Michael Davis & Associates).  Mountain Top will be heading up their scheduling.
Michael Davis expresses, “John Rulapaugh has done it again by assembling one of the strongest personnel lineups to come along in quite sometime.  The move from trio to quartet will be well received by John’s fan base.  I am very excited about the future of the Freedom Quartet.”

The quartet is looking forward to getting into the studio soon for their first full recording together.
To meet and follow the exciting happenings of this outstanding quartet, visit their brand new website at
You can find them on Facebook at and follow them on Twitter at

For more information visit


News and Notes For 8/13/2013

Yes, I’m still here, though life is insanely busy these days with an 8 year old starting soccer next week and a 6 year old that has started competitive cheerleading.  🙂  There have been several stories that have made the rounds lately that I really shouldn’t, and cannot, ignore.

  • Tracy Stuffle is back in ICU.  He has several challenges ahead of him, not the least of which is a so-far completely drug-resistant infection.  None of the antibiotics they have tried have worked.  There is an infectious disease doctor coming in to advise on how to treat further.  The infection has greatly reduced Tracy’s kidney function as well.  PLEASE be in fervent prayer for Tracy, Libbi, and Jared Stuffle, and for the rest of the Perrys.  Libbi has shown incredible strength throughout this entire ordeal, pray that God will continute to grant her that strength.
  • Josh Garner has departed Freedom and joined the Dixie Melody Boys as their new lead singer.  Garner has an incredible lead voice, and gives the DMB what is sure to be a fantastic vocal lineup.  I’ll be interested in hearing their first CD together, as it should be very, very good.  John Rulapaugh has every intention of keeping Freedom going, though as has been the case until now, on a very limited travel schedule.  Pray for John as he searches for a new lead singer.
  • Burman Porter announced last night that he was leaving the Dove Brothers due to health issues (hat tip, DJM).  Burman indicated that McCray has a replacement lined up already, so be watching for that announcement soon.

I’ve got several things coming up for the blog, including a review of the latest CD from the Old Paths, These Truths and I’ll revisit those Blackwood Brothers 78s I told you about a couple of months ago with a Classics Corner post. Finding blogging time has become challenging, but maybe the posts will be worth the wait!

Burman Porter Rejoining Dove Brothers

According to his Facebook page, Burman Porter is rejoining the Dove Brothers (hat tip, DBM).  I for one am glad to see this, I’ve always been partial to the original Dove Brothers lineup of John Rulapaugh, McCray and Eric Dove, Burman, and Richard Simmons.  Burman has a tremendous bass voice, and is especially adept at carrying melodic solos.  It will be good to have him back in SG.  Welcome back Burman!

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