Album ReviewsIT'S HAPPENING
Itís Happening was released in 1969. Up Ďtil then, The Oak Ridge Boys were just a good solid southern gospel quartet. But just as that mighty Saturn V rocket blasted the Apollo astronauts into lunar orbit that same year, Jesus Is Coming Soon propelled The Oak Ridge Boys to new heights. Jesus Is Coming Soon was their gospel Elvira. It put them on the map in gospel music just as Elvira would do for them in country music 12 years later.
By this time, the Oaks counted the likes of Johnny Cash among their fans, and this album boasts a rousing rendition of Cashís song Daddy Sang Bass. Other highlights include Duane Allenís self-penned Without Jesus You Wonít Make Heaven and Willie Wynnís lively lead vocal on Iím Almost Home. A clean shaven William Lee Golden handles lead vocals on Nearer To Thee and Amazing Love. Noel Fox debuts on bass, fitting into the Oaksí look and sound easily, and contributing leads on Itís In Your Hands and It Wonít Be Long.
This Dove Award winning album is transitional in a way, as the residual echoes of the hootenanny Oaks from the Folk Minded Spirituals album give way to a more countrified sound. The computer card graphics and smart photography on the fold-out album jacket speak of a group of young men who are focused on the future. For The Oak Ridge Boys, itís still happening.
Outstanding Cuts: Jesus Is
Coming Soon, Iím Almost Home, Daddy Sang Bass, Without Jesus You Wonít Make
Cut Outs: None