The Angelic Gospel Singers were organized by Ms. MargaretAllison in 1944, who, in addition to being founder, is also manager, booking agent, lead singer and pianist for the group. She, along with two other original members, Ella Mae Norris and Lucille Shird, were members of a gospel chorus called the Spiritual Echoes of Philadelphia, PA. As a result of a dream by Ms. Allison, the three of them along with her sister, Josephine McDowell, formed the group known today as the Angelic Gospel Singers.
The group startetd out singing in and around the Philadelphia area. After a reasonable amount of success there, the group traveled to Asheville, NC, Ms. SHird's home and Greenville, South Carolina, Ms. Norris' home. From there, the Angelic's travels became more extensive.
In 1947, the Angelics signed with Gotham Records and recorded their first song, "Touch me Lord Jesus," which was an instant hit. In 1950, the Angelics teamed with the Dixie Hummingbirds and together they recorded such sons as "Dear Lord Look Down Upon Me," "In the Morning When the Dark Clouds Roll Away," "Mother Left Me Standing on the Highway," "Wondering WHich Way to Go," and many others. Through the years, the Angelics have worked with such gospel greats as the late Mahalia Jackson, The Mighty Clouds of Joy, The Soul Stirrers, The Jackson Southernaires, Willie Banks and the Messengers, The Brooklyn Allstars, Slim and the Supreme Angels, The Swanee Quintets, The Danis Sisters, Evangelist Shirley Caesar, The CBS Trumpeters, and the Sensational Nightingales, to name a few.
Though the task has not been easy, the Angelics have managed to stay together singing praises to God for the uplifting of mankind for more than fifty years. There have been some changes in personnel, but the core of the group has remained the same. In 1951, Bernice Cole of New York City, joined the group. Then in 1953, Lucille Shird left the group to get married. In 1955, Ella Mae Norris left the group for the same reason. In 1957, Bernice Cole left the group because of illness in her family. Through it all, Margaret and Josephine continued to sing. then in 1961, Thomas Mobeley came to the group and stayed for twelve years.
Geraldine Morris joined the Angelics in 1972 and stayed until the Lord called her home one year later. In 1975, Bernice Cole returned to the group. In 1982, Pauline Turner of Franklin, VA, joined the group followed by two new musicians the following year, Darryl Richmond on bass guitar and John Richmond as lead guitar.
As the longest selling female gospel group in history, The Angelic Gospel Singers enjoyed a hit with their first release in 1947 on Gotham Records, "Touch Me Lord Jesus." While with Gotham, they also recorded such songs as, "He Never Left Me Alone," "Jeus, When Troubles Burden Me Down," and the original Christmas compsoition of "Glory to the Newborn King," and many others. In 1955, the Angelics moved to Nashboro Records and did a remake of "Touch Me Lord Jesus."
Other songs the Angelics are well known for are: "This Old Building Keeps on Leaning," "I've Got to Move to a Better Home," "Welcome Home," "Thank You Lord For One More Day," "I Hope it Won't Be This Way Always," "I'm Bound for Mt. Zion," and "If Anybody Makes It, Surely I Will."
After twenty-seven years with Nashboro, in 1983, the Angelics signed with Malaco Records in Jackson, MS. During their tenure with Malaco, the group has recorded eleven projects. In December of 1983, Malaco released their second project, "Don't Stop Praying."
In 1984, the company released an anniversary album on the Angelics commemorating forty years of gospel. The album features such songs as "if You Can't Help Me," and "Don't Stop at the Top of the Hill." For nearly sixty years, the Angelics have weathered many of the storms of life and through it all sing in their tight-harmony with a nice bluesy feel hoping and praying that every listener is touched by the spirit of their music and blessed with stronger faith.
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