II was fortunate to attend a Booth Brothers' concert last summer and found the trio to be entertaining and inspiring. So when Family Christian Bookstores presented an opportunity to review the group's new CD STILL I was delighted. Within seconds of inserting the CD into the car's player, I knew that this was an album that I would play and replay. Now the group has its roots in traditional Southern Gospel going back to the group that Ronnie and Michael Booth's father sang in; the Booth Brothers themselves date to the late 1990's. This album strays from that traditional route; instead it is an astonishing mix of styles, tempos, and accompaniments. A fresh percussion beat strikes out on FAITH KEEPS WALKING, the first song on the cd. HAPPY RHYTHM, the second song echoes a bit of a big band sound. STILL, the song for which the album is named is sweet and slightly more traditional. With each of the ten songs, you will find a distinctive sound and message.
One of the reasons this album will take a favorite place in my collection is the group's rendition of TOUCH OF THE MASTER'S HAND. This is the song which tells the story of an old violin discarded on a wagon. When the auctioneer presents it, no one will bid, not even one dollar. Then a gray haired old man picks up the violin and plays the sweetest music. Clearly the master has changed the worth of the instrument. The rest of the song draws parallels to God, our Master and our own changed lives. The men's choir in which my husband sings has performed this song (different arrangement) and I've come to love it. Partly because it is a true life parable for us. About 16 years ago, my husband, then in his mid-50's accompanied me to an auction. An old, battered violin case on a wagon of junk caught his eye. My husband sings and plays guitar, but had never touched a violin. Something told him that day that he needed that violin. He bid, and brought that violin home. Caring reconstruction of the instrument by a luthier, lessons with an accomplished teen violinist, and my husband has become the "gray haired" older man who makes the useless instrument, an instrument of God's love. And he, too, has been changed.
Back to the CD review -- Give a listen to the mix of music styles and sounds. You will find a favorite among the ten songs, one that will encourage your faith, bring a parable to life, or give you strength. Even if you have other Booth Brother CDs, you want this one. Thank you Family Christian for the opportunity to review this album.