It was 15 years ago, February of 2005, when talented musician and singer Gordon Mote first answered the invitation to join popular Southern Gospel trio, The Booth Brothers, for a couple of music events they were hosting in their home state of Florida. That weekend marked the beginning of what would become a full-time touring musical ministry for the gifted individual. “Little did we know what God had in store,” Mote says smiling. “As my wife and I, along with my manager, Bob and his wife Gayle, traveled down to Florida, we all had lots of questions, as we wondered what God would have in store. I know for me personally, there were many doubts and some fears.” Fortunately, those fears and doubts were put to rest as the weekend proved to be a tremendous success. “That weekend,” Mote explains, “God removed the doubts and fears. Although there have been seasons of questions, God has blessed in so many ways. From the very beginning His hand has been, and continues to be, upon this ministry.”
Blind from birth, the Alabama native’s earliest recollections center around a love for music and sports – two loves which he continues to enjoy with much passion. “Growing up in our little town of Gadsden, AL, our whole family would listen to Alabama Crimson Tide football games on Saturday and Gospel music on Sunday. Truth is, I think I could say ‘Roll Tide’ before I could say ‘Daddy,’ ” Gordon laughs.
By the age of three, Gordon began playing piano, singing and traveling with his family. “As kids, my brother, who is also blind, and I traveled and sang in churches of all sizes. I was so passionate about music and loved listening to every album I could get my hands on while we were growing up.”
As Gordon began to excel musically, he enjoyed academic success, as well. He became one of the first blind students in the country to mainstream into the public school system. Later, he received a full scholarship to Jacksonville State University in Jacksonville, AL, then after three years transferred to Nashville’s famed Belmont University, where he graduated with honors.
Two days after graduation, he accepted a position with country music legend, Lee Greenwood. Greenwood became the first of many popular entertainers Gordon enjoyed sharing the stage with for the next 13 years, including Trisha Yearwood, Tanya Tucker and Porter Wagoner
During that time, Gordon also established himself as one of the most sought-after studio musicians, whose piano artistry and producing abilities can be heard on recordings by the likes of Alan Jackson, Brad Paisley, Blake Shelton, Martina McBride, Bob Seger, Rascal Flatts, Carrie Underwood, Lionel Richie, Josh Turner, Darius Rucker and Alison Krauss, just to name a few. In recent years, he has produced recordings for the Gaither Vocal Band, The Martins and The Triumphant Quartet, which received the Dove Award for Southern Gospel Album of the Year from the Gospel Music Association in 2019.
While his place at the pinnacle of music success was firmly established through his studio work and touring with other multi-award winning recording artists, there was a calling that eventually Gordon felt compelled to accept. “At first, I had no desire to embark on a full-time music ministry. In fact, when I was first approached about it, I turned it down. Then about nine or 10 months later I was sitting on my porch, listening to a Braves baseball game, and I was just feeling so down. I had nothing to feel down about. I was working a lot. My kids were healthy and everything was great between my wife and me, but I just felt empty. Finally, I just said, ‘God, if this really is what you want me to do, I’ll do it; but you know in my heart I have no desire to do this. I need You to give me a passion to truly minister.’ I knew God was leading in this direction and once I fully accepted His calling, I have never had the same kind of passion for anything else like I do for ministry. Don’t get me wrong, I love all the other things I do and all the other opportunities God has allowed me to enjoy but there is nothing like ministering to the people,” he shares. “I’ve come to realize that you don’t have to be perfect. You just have to be willing.”
“It’s been amazing to see how God has used Gordon,” says long-time friend and manager, Bob Rodgers. “Gordon’s ministry, message, humor, humility and incredible talent relates to audiences, regardless of the demographic or preferred worship style. This is reflected by the broad spectrum of churches, venues, corporate and other events that invite Gordon each year. He sees every opportunity as an invitation to present a message of encouragement, hope and God’s love. We are so thankful for all the opportunities God has presented, and we look forward to what the future holds.”
Balancing a busy music career with family time can be quite taxing but Gordon credits his wife Kimberly, as well as their three children, Samantha, Parker and Ashton, for keeping the balance there. “I am so blessed,” Gordon beams. “Kimberly is Super-Woman, and I can’t thank God enough for the blessings He has given to me both personally and professionally.”
With 11 solo recordings to his credit, as well as 18 Academy of Country Music Award nominations, including three Piano/Keyboard Player of the Year honors, a Gospel Music Association Dove Award, and 28 years of touring, including 15 years as a solo artist, Gordon Mote shows no signs of slowing down and he refuses to rest on his laurels. In fact, most recently he has added yet one more credit to his exciting resume. This one, too, finds Gordon behind a microphone, yet not on a concert stage or in a recording studio, but in the announcer’s booth. “Music and sports have always been my two passions. I am thrilled to have this opportunity,” he shares.
In 2018 he began announcing baseball games for Christ Presbyterian Academy in Nashville and in 2019 he added football games to his resume. “Gordon is a special man, and we are grateful for his commitment to CPA Athletics,” states Mike Ellson, CPA Director of Athletics. “He has a rich radio voice and is truly helping others see the game from a perspective of how announcers have painted the picture of sports for him since he was a young child. Gordon has never seen a field, a player or a ball, yet he still comprehends the concept and rules. He loves the atmosphere good announcers create for the fans.”
“Every game presents its own set of challenges,” Gordon says. “So many times I am responsible for much more than just the game; there’s all kinds of craziness happening, but the crowd needs the information and it needs to be entertaining. I have had people ask me, ‘How can a blind guy be the voice from the press box?’ I guess it is a little odd,” Gordon says with a chuckle. “But I am living proof that if God gives you a gift and He opens a door for you to do something, He is going to give you the skills, the tools and the people you need to get it done.”
“Gordon believes that in whatever event or surrounding he finds himself, it is an opportunity,” Kimberly, his wife of 28 years shares. “Whether in a church, on a concert stage, performing at a conference, working in a recording studio or sitting in a press box announcing a football game, Gordon believes his ultimate responsibility is to represent the love of Christ.”
A well known speaker once said, “If you can’t figure out your purpose, figure out your passion. Your passion will lead you right into your purpose.” This speaker could have easily been referring to Gordon Mote when making this statement. As he embarks on year number 16 in his full-time ministry, t is fairly safe to say that the multi-talented producer, singer, musician, and now sports announcer, is using his many passions to fulfill his purposes.
Gordon Mote is currently scheduling events for 2020. For complete scheduling information, call 678-231-6723. For additional information regarding Gordon Mote, visit www.gordonmote.com.