Noted gospel pioneer, Sallie Martin once observed in an interview, “I’ve never been the greatest, nobody ever called me the greatest; yet, still I’ve been everywhere the greatest have been, and that’s just the way it goes.” Another legend, Country-Western Hall of Famer, Hank Snow scored one of his biggest hits with a song called, “I’ve Been Everywhere.” These themes certainly describe Nashville’s own, Everett Drake.
As so many stage performers who have gone before, Everett was raised in the church, singing in the choir for as long as he can remember. Today, between road trips, he still devotes as much energy as possible to his beloved First Baptist Church South Inglewood. In the early 1970s, it was his involvement with gospel music that led him to join a Nashville group called, The Johnson Ensemble. He both sang and directed the group. The Johnson Ensemble gained the attention of gospel producer, Shannon Williams, who signed them to his Nashboro Records label, and over the next few years, several albums were released. The plaintive, “The Harvest Is Plentiful”, became one of the top selling gospel albums of the year…thus, Everett experienced singing on his first hit record.
Although Williams produced only gospel, many country producers sought his assistance in obtaining gospel singers for background work with their clients. Consequently, Everett was introduced to both Country and Gospel artists that recorded at Woodland Studios. He sang with such gospel greats as Clara Ward (Aretha Franklin’s inspiration), Reverend Isaac Douglas, Reverend Cleophus Robinson, Harrison Johnson and country stars, Donna Fargo, Barbara Mandrell, Eddie Rabbitt and Brenda Lee.
In August of 1980, Everett was engaged by Country star, Donna Fargo, as a background singer. The next several years were spent with her on tour, which carried him to audiences throughout the United States, Canada, the Caribbean, Korea, Japan and the Philippines. The following list details some of the highlights of these tours:
• Nashville Now (Music City Tonight) • Great Ladies of Country • Blowout At Billy Bob’s Texas • Great American Sing-A-Long
Las Vegas Lake Tahoe Reno • Las Vegas Hilton • Caesars • Harrah’s • Sahara • Harrah’s • John Asquauga’s Nugget • Sands • Sahara/High Sierra (Horizon) • Eldorado’s • Four Queens • MGM/Bally Grand • MGM/Bally Grand • Showboat • Palace Station • Holidays (Harrah’s)
In May of 1992, Everett received a call from Lyle Lovett, which led to his joining Lyle and His LARGE Band. Again, he became a world traveler, touring the United States, Canada, England, Ireland, Scotland and Germany. These tours also featured Dire Straits, Bonnie Raitt and Was Not Was. With Lyle and the Large Band, Everett:
• Sang on the movie soundtrack, “Leap of Faith”, starring Steve Matin • Performed at the Inaugural Ball for President Bill Clinton
He also made the following television appearances: • Late Night with David Letterman • The Tonight Show with Jay Leno • The Arsenio Hall Show • Austin City Limits • 35th Anniversary – CMA (A Country Music Celebration)
• The 1992 World Series (National Anthem) Toronto, Canada
Currently, Everett has returned to his first love, gospel music, and is working with Dr. Bobby Jones as one of his featured vocalists on the top-rated show, Bobby Jones Gospel. The show is shown internationally on the Black Entertainment Television (BET), Word Television, and IMPACT Television Networks. Again, he finds himself in the company of gospel’s hottest stars, including longtime friend, Derrick Lee, who is musical director of the show. With Jones, Everett has provided vocals for:
• Bobby Jones Gospel (Bobby Jones & New Life, Nashville, Nashville Super Choir and various artists;
• Tours in the U.S., the Caribbean, Italy, Spain, Switzerland, Japan and Australia;
• CD projects that include:
-Bobby Jones & New Life and the Nashville Super Choir, “Just Churchin”– Gospocentric Records
-“A Gospel Experience – Live In Italy” featuring Dr. Bobby Jones and the Nashville Super Choir, Liquid 8 Records;
• Gospel Industry Retreats -Aladdin Resorts, Las Vegas -Rio Resort, Las Vegas -MGM Grand Resort, Las Vegas -Mirage Resort, Las Vegas -Venetian Resort, Las Vegas -Broward Convention Center, Ft. Lauderdale, FL
• Barbara Mandrell at Bally’s Resort, Las Vegas • Dolly Parton’s “Christmas in Dollywood” Television Special • Jerry Lewis Muscular Dystrophy, Caesar’s –Las Vegas • New Kids On The Block -Pay-Per-View concert—Providence, Rhode Island -“No More Games” Tour
Today you can enjoy exciting original music from his debut cd project, AMEN GOES RIGHT THERE!, produced by Derrick Lee for Dherico Music. It is available on CD Baby, iTunes, Amazon, and Rhapsody as well as www.everettdrake.com. You can also follow him on Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube.
Everett counts himself fortunate to be able to move so easily between various styles of music. To him, the stage is the stage. We can never be sure where he will turn up next. But, one thing we can be certain of, when he receives the call, he will be ready to catch the next plane or tour bus to the destination. The stage is his second home and, he loves every minute of it.
The Living In Harmony Show strongly encourage all of our listeners to support Everett Drake by connecting with the him on social media, website and purchasing his music on major digital media outlets for the sake of spreading the good news of Jesus Christ and inspiring others with the word of God. Please sow a seed into his ministry.
The Living In Harmony Show
Special Guest Christian Urban Contemporary/Traditional Musical Artist "Everett Drake"
Time: 7:00 PM CST., 8:00 PM CST.
Listen to music and interview of Everette Drake
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