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Les Beasley Honored at 2017 National Quartet Convention

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (​September 30, 2017) – ​Beloved Gospel music icon and legend, Mr. Les Beasley, was honored for his lifetime of contributions to Gospel Music during NQC’s 60th Anniversary. The presentation occurred today, Saturday, September 30, 2017 during the afternoon showcase, A Tribute to the Gospel Singing Jubilee. Clarke Beasley, son of Les and NQC VP, presented the honor on behalf of the NQC Board of Directors.

Beasley, known for being the lead singer and manager for The Florida Boys, was a pioneer in Gospel Music TV as well. Beasley produced the Gospel Singing Jubilee for over two decades. Under Beasley’s direction, the popular television program aired on Sunday mornings in every major television market in the United States. Millions viewed the show every Sunday where the careers of many of Gospel Music’s most loved artists were launched and some of the most beloved Gospel songs were introduced for the first time.

NQC – the National Quartet Convention – was founded in 1957 by gospel music legend and former backup vocalist for Elvis Presley, J.D. Sumner who co-produced the event with James Blackwood. The annual convention was moved in later years to Nashville, TN and then to Louisville, KY where it was held for 20 years.

 

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Formed over 19 years ago by Deon & Susan Unthank originally as SoGospelNews.com, the site was birthed from an email discussion group by the same name. The SoGospelNews email discussion list was created by the Unthanks after the Singing News shut down its extremely popular discussion list. SoGospelNews started as a simple webpage listing artists, fans, individuals, etc. that were avid supporters of the newly formed SoGospelNews talk list. The site eventually took on printing news for Southern Gospel artists, and eventually took on reviewing the latest recordings from both signed and independent artists within the small genre. SoGospelNews became the most viewed Southern Gospel website on the Internet with over 4,000,000 hits per month.

The Unthank family are now involved in the site, as well as the addition of over two dozen staff writers. The website is based out of Murfreesboro, Tennessee. In April 2010, SoGospelNews changed its name to AbsolutelyGospel.com. The name change allows them to cover news items of not only Southern Gospel, but also Country Gospel, Inspirational, and Black Gospel.

On January 5, 2011, Susan Unthank passed away, leaving the website in control of Deon, their son, Chris, and their daughter Amy.

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