Legacy Five has been a popular and award-winning southern gospel music group for many years all across North America, as well as more locally at Country Cupboard, in Lewisburg, where they will return to perform once again on Friday evening.
“Legacy Five is a great group of guys,” said Melissa Swartz, events coordinator at Country Cupboard. “They have some new members this year, so we’re looking forward to meeting them and hearing them sing together as a group.”
“I think they are going to be great,” she said. “I am sure the concert guests are looking forward to hearing and seeing them again as well.”
When the Cathedral Quartet retired in December 1999, members Scott Fowler and Roger Bennett decided to continue the southern gospel quartet tradition with a new group, Legacy Five, which made its official debut in January 2000 in Atlanta, Ga. Since the beginning, the group has remained at the top of the charts in Christian music. They have been featured on numerous tapings of the Gaither and Friends Homecoming video series, and have performed for ministries led by Dr. Charles Stanley and Dr. David Jeremiah.
They are especially loved for their unique four- and five-part harmony.
Fowler said singing, and specifically singing southern gospel music, has always been a part of his life. His dad was a pastor, and was very musical; so was his mother. Some of Fowler’s earliest memories are of singing along with them. He jokes that he thought southern gospel music was “all there was,” since “It was all we listened to and sung and played.”
In school, Fowler said, “I would opt for every musical class the school offered.” As a young adult, he had the opportunity to sing with a southern gospel group. And then, as soon as he graduated college, he began singing full-time. Thirty-two years later, and that’s still the case. And he is still in love with the southern gospel style.
“It’s fun music,” he said. “It’s fun to sing, to listen to. For whatever reason, it’s just kind of in me.”
In addition to the music, the message in the songs is also what draws him.
“The lyrics are very strong and very biblically-based,” he said. “They motivate me. They challenge me. They cause me to celebrate. I feel like this music has the ability to touch the heart with every emotion a human can experience. When you can find one style of music that can do that — to me, that’s just the perfect combination.”
Over the decades of his music career, Fowler said he has heard numerous stories from listeners whose lives were touched in powerful ways – specific ways.
“One person gets encouragement for their journey,” he said. “The other person celebrates the journey they’re on…This music has the ability to be for a person what that person needs for the moment.”
Every time he’s performing, Fowler said, “I try to keep in mind that every person out there is different, and every person in the audience may need something different. It’s incumbent on us to realize that many folks out there are depending on an encouraging message to help them get through the day, week, month — sometimes their life.”
A few weeks ago, Fowler said a couple in their mid-60s came up to him after a concert, and the woman told him that after 35 years, they were planning to file divorce papers the next day. But after listening to the songs they sang during the concert, they decided to get some help and remain together.
Swartz said the southern gospel groups that come to Country Cupboard “are drawing great crowds.”
“We love that we have a mix of people who come to several shows per year and some that come for the first time.”
Many enjoy the smaller, more intimate venue.
Not only does Swartz believe that the audience will love the music – “Our hope is that they leave here encouraged,” she said.
Legacy Five consists of Matt Fouch, bass; Bryan Walker, baritone; Fowler, lead; Lee Black, tenor; and Josh Townsend, pianist.
They will be releasing a new project, “Pure Love” on Aug. 23. Fowler said Friday’s concert will feature some of those songs, along with some beloved fan favorites.