All articles are the property of SGHistory.com and should not be copied, stored or reproduced by any means without the express written permission of the editors of SGHistory.com. Wikipedia editors, this particularly includes you. Please do not copy our work and present it as your own. Thank you.
Page last modified on September 22, 2017, at 02:33 PM EST
J.J D Sumner
John Daniel (J.D.) Sumner (November 19, 1924 - November 16, 1998)
Legendary bass singer J.D. Sumner began his career in 1945 with the Sunny South Quartet in Tampa, Florida. He later served as manager of the Dixie Lily Harmoneers. His big break came in 1949 when he was hired as bass singer for the Sunshine Boys. After five years with that group, James Blackwood persuaded J.D. to join the Blackwood Brothers following the deaths of R W Blackwood and Bill Lyles in 1954.
In 1965, he left the Blackwoods to manage and sing bass for the Stamps. Over the next decade, JD Sumner And The Stamps Quartet became a fixture of the Southern Gospel Music world and became known to millions outside the gospel music community as a result of touring with Elvis Presley from 1971 to 1977.
During the 1980s, Sumner served as bass singer for the legendary Masters V quartet, along with Hovie Lister, Jake Hess, and James Blackwood. Near the end of the decade, Hess, Blackwood, and Lister left the Masters V. Sumner hired replacements and revived the Stamps name. He sang and managed the group until his death in 1998.
J.D. has been listed in Guiness Book of World Records as the World’s Lowest Bass Singer. J.D. is credited with the introduction of the tour bus to the Southern Gospel industry in 1955. He and James Blackwood also created the National Quartet Convention in 1957. He also composed over 700 songs, with his most famous being The Old Country Church. He served as Southern Gospel Music Association President from 1996 to 1998.
1965 Bass, Bass, Bass (Skylite Records/SLP-6033): Look Down That Lonesome Road, Lord, It's Me Again, If I Could Hear My Mother Pray Again, Anytime, Anywhere, Near To The Heart Of God, I Am A Pilgrim, Steal Away, Keep Walking, What Heaven Means To Me, Lord I'm Coming Home, Ole Time Religion (Re-issued in 1975 as The Stamps Quartet Present Their Dynamic Bass on Skylite Records SLP-6148).
1968 The Many Moods Of The Illustrious J.D. Sumner (Heartwarming Records/HWS-1963): These Hands, God Put A Rainbow In The Sky, God Will Take Care Of You, His Eye Is On The Sparrow, The Way That He Loves, Swing Low, In The Upper Room, Life's Railway To Heaven, His Hands, At The Cross, When The Great Trumpet Sounds, Roamin' River.
1969 The Heart Of A Man (Sumar Records/SLP-4306): Time Has Made A Change, Papa's Banjo; Victory In Jesus, If I Can Help Somebody, Big Boss, Follow Me, Silver Haired Daddy, Take My Hand, Precious Lord, Sweetest Mother, Recitation: Who Will Take Grandma/Music: Where We'll Never Grow Old (Re-issued in 1982 as The Masters V Present Their Majestic Bass, J.D. Sumner on Skylite Records SLP-6266).
1972 The Way It Sounds Down Low (Heartwarming Records/R3149): If You Know The Lord, All Because Of God's Amazing Grace, Tears Are A Language God Understands, Turn Your Radio On, Medley: If I Could Hear My Mother Pray Again/Life's Railway To Heaven, The One Left Behind, Lord Build Me A Cabin In Glory, One By One, Roll Jordan Roll, The Unseen Hand.
1984 Thank God For Kids (Skylite Records/SLP-6321): Thank God For Kids, The Three Nails, If You Know The Lord, Life's Railway To Heaven, Put My Little Shoes Away, His Hand In Mine, Take My Hand, Precious Lord, Will The Circle Be Unbroken, Medley: Mama's Boy/Precious Memories, Blessed Assurance.
1985 The Masters V Present Their Magnificent Bass, J.D. Sumner (Skylite Records/SLP-6347): American Trilogy; The Unseen Hand; Leave It There; Just Thinking Out Loud; Old Man River; Roll, Jordan, Roll; In The Upper Room; Roamin' River; When I Hear Jesus Say, Come Home; Summertime.
1988 Present The Superlative Bass Voice Of J.D. Sumner (Masters Records/MSC-8801): His Hands; I Shall Be At Home; One By One; Now I Have Everything; Steal Away; Never; The King And I; Precious Is He To Me; We'll Talk It Over; My Way.
1999 The Wait Is Over (Skylite Records/9674504952) (compiles performances featuring Sumner from Skylite masters of the Blackwood Brothers, Stamps Quartet, Masters V, and J D's solo albums): What A Morning, Look Down That Lonesome Road, American Trilogy, If I Can Help Somebody, Precious Memories, Thank God For Kids, His Hand In Mine, Blessed Assurance, If I Could Hear My Mother Pray Again, Going Home, Let The Lower Lights Be Burning, Green Green Grass Of Home, Old Time Religion, Roll On Jordan, I Am A Pilgrim, I've Got To Walk That Lonesome Road, Walking And Talking With My Lord, A Wonderful Time Up There, Give The World A Smile, Rainbow Of Love.
2009 A Musical Biography (Image Records/DAY1623D) (narrated by Donnie Sumner/features rare recordings of JD Sumner).