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MP3 Jessy Dixon, Geraldine Gay, and Nash Shaffer, Jr. - In the Right Hands - Chicago Gospel Keyboard Pioneers

In June 2004, The Sirens Records recorded three gospel keyboard masters, Jessy Dixon, Geraldine Gay, and Nash Shaffer, Jr. in a soul-stirring studio session. The result is an inspirational and magical collaboration of heart, rhythm and soul that will dee

11 MP3 Songs
GOSPEL: Traditional Gospel, BLUES: Piano Blues

The legendary gospel performer Reverend James Cleveland discovered Texas-born Jessy Dixon. Dixon''s creative songs caught Cleveland''s ear, and the gospel great performed and recorded many of young Dixon''s songs, including God Can Do Anything But Fail. Later, Jessy Dixon became a gospel star in his own right, and has performed at Radio City Music Hall, The Apollo Theatre, Carnegie Hall, Madison Square Garden, and on the Oprah Winfrey Show. With an active touring schedule, he frequently appears with Bill Gaither. He has over twenty recordings, including seven Grammy nominations, and Jessy sings on several recordings by rock musician Paul Simon. Mainstream artists such as Amy Grant, Natalie Cole, Diana Ross, Randy Crawford, and many others have recorded his compositions.

Although Jessy is internationally known for his singing and song writing, this disc proudly spotlights Jessy as a solo piano player. It''s refreshing to hear him play his own songs in his own style. His energetic playing and passionate singing are underscored by the old style gospel sound. You can read more about Jessy at https://www.tradebit.com.

Geraldine Gay is most notably recognized as a member of The Gay Sisters Trio that recorded for Dolphin and Savoy Records in the late forties and early fifties. The Trio, which included Geraldine and her sisters Evelyn and Mildred, performed at New York''s Apollo Theater, Carnegie Hall, the Astrodome, and the Bicentennial Celebration of the United States on the Washington Mall. In addition, the sisters sang at churches around the country, and have performed or recorded with some of the most influential artists of the 20th century, including Mahalia Jackson, Elvis Presley, Sam Cooke, Dr. Thomas Dorsey, Clara Ward, Pops Staples, and many others.

In his book "The Gospel Sound," Anthony Heilbut referred to Geraldine Gay as the "Errol Garner of gospel". Besides her jazz-influenced piano sound, her playing reflects her personality - down home friendliness yet sophisticated charm.

Pastor Gregory Donald Gay is the co-founder of Prayer Center Church of God in Christ, and younger brother of The Gay Sisters Trio. At six years of age, Pastor Gay appeared at Carnegie Hall with his sisters. His singing continues the Gay family gospel tradition. On this recording, his voice is deep and rich, and his bluesy intonations add to the emotional quality of his powerful singing. The disc''s rousing track God Shall Wipe All Tears Away, demonstrates the Gay family''s musical prowess; Geraldine accompanies her brother Donald and nephew, Gregory, in this song written by her late sister Evelyn.

The Gays'' legacy lives on in the recordings of well-known artists such as Aretha Franklin, Pop Winans, and Lyle Lovett who have covered the Trio''s music. The Gay family was honored by the Smithsonian Institute for their contributions and advancement of gospel music in America. In the early 90''s, Geraldine and Donald were recorded on "The Soul of Chicago" Shanachie (5762). "In the Right Hands" will expose the next generation of listeners to their exceptional talent.

Nash Shaffer Jr. started studying piano at age six. By the time Nash turned fourteen he played on Chicago''s "Jubilee Showcase" gospel TV show. Nash has recorded with the "Queen of Gospel Music," Albertina Walker, for Savoy Records, as well as many other talented vocalists. In addition to his musicianship, Nash has kept traditional gospel alive by disc jockeying a radio program for the past twenty-one years (Sunday mornings on WCEV 1450AM from 5 to 7 a.m.). Honored with numerous awards for his music and service to the gospel community, he has served as the minister of music for many Chicago area churches. On this disc, Nash plays a rollicking version of "When the Saints Go Marching In" and soulful duets with Geraldine.

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