On August first we went to see the Inspirations in Malden, Missouri and received such a blessing! This was the first time we had the privilege of hearing Dallas Rogers and David Ragan with them, and we were VERY impressed! These guys are a perfect match for the Inspirations. The night started with two opening groups, Heart to Heart and the Rivermen Quartet. Each sang four songs before the Inspirations came on. Heart to Heart is a husband and wife duo, they sang a hymn, the Booth Brothers “He Saw It All” and honored our Veterans. They brought an American flag to the front of the stage and had everyone stand and say the Pledge of Allegiance. The Rivermen, a local mixed quartet, sang all older quartet songs like “I’m Feeling Fine”, “Hide Thou Me” and “The Sweetest Song I Know”. The Inspirations took the stage starting the night off with the classic “When I Wake Up To Sleep No More”. This song was encored twice and the energy these guys had on stage was very evident . . . They were ready to sing! Their next song was Melton’s solo, How Great It Is, he sang this song with such passion, he had the audience on the edge of their seats. He was putting his all into it! Then they did an older song I’m sure some of you remember called Jesus Is Mine. While they held the last note, Dallas went so high I wondered how the people on the front row didn’t have their glasses crack! He has a really great range for a young tenor. Dallas’s solo, Dealing With Gold, is a song off of their new CD. He was so happy as he sang, I don’t think his smile ever left his face for a second the entire evening! They also sang Thinking More And More About Heaven. After that, it was time for Mike’s solo, If You Only Knew. Next, Martin came and introduced everyone. He teased Melton about being their “Campbell’s Soup Man” and Dallas about being the “Cowboy” of the group. The crowd really was into their song I’m Bound For That City, and so were the guys! They all sang with such enthusiasm it was a joy to watch. On The Rose, they received a standing ovation, and of course they encored it! Then Martin came up and introduced their last song of the first set – “The Son Came Down” – he was so excited about this song! He spoke for a minute on how America was founded on God and now the kids can’t even pray in school and all the places where our nation’s leaders have taken God out . . . But, he reminded us with the last words of the chorus of this song, that as Christians, “Nothing on earth can take Him from us”!!!!!! David came and sang The Son Came Down, during which, Martin would stop playing the piano and get up and walk around the stage engaging the audience. At the end of the song he told David to sing the chorus again and the last two lines four times, then he told the audience to sing along with them. This part they did accapella and still sounded great! The crowd gave this one a standing ovation. It was clear that this song impacted its listeners greatly. Now I do need to mention that the second half began with Heart to Heart singing two songs, of which, everyone enjoyed – even the Inspirations. As the floor of the stage was at eye level, it was hard not to notice all the “dancing” going on behind the curtain! If you can imagine seeing several pairs of black shoes thoroughly enjoying themselves back there! My favorite was seeing the moon walking!!!! J The Inspirations kicked the second half off with Touring That City. When that song was finished Martin got up and said, “Now we are going to have Mike sing down there (pointing at the end of the piano) – he is going to sing three notes from the bottom, (everyone claps) that’s two white ones and a black one”. (Everyone laughs.) So Martin sat down on the piano bench and started playing Hide Me, Rock Of Ages, and Mike stands there with his hands folded like he’s praying and looking up at the ceiling. The other guys look at Mike, then they look at the ceiling, then they look at each other and shrug their shoulders as if to say, “don’t know what he’s looking at”, and start singing. When they get to the part where Mike gets ready to go real low, Melton says, “come on Mike” in a chipmunk voice that sends the audience and Mike rolling in laughter. When Mike stops laughing he says, “part time insurance salesman” – which prompts Melton to say, (in his chipmunk voice) “Aflac!!” Which makes the crowd and Mike laugh again. Finally, Mike gets his composure and hits his note (everyone claps) and Melton quacks like a duck. (Which makes everyone laugh again.) The next number was Two Shoes, featuring Dallas – the audience really liked that one. Then Martin had Jack Laws come out and sing He’s My Best Friend. Martin introduced him as the Bear Hunter and the Bear Hunter Trio! (David and Melton sang with him also.) After that, they sang I’ve Got More To Go To Heaven For. I Have Not Forgotten was next, David did an awesome job on this song. Then they closed out the evening with I’m Not Ashamed. They didn’t even get through the first verse and the whole auditorium was on there feet! To sum it up – the Inspirations were AWESOME!!!! That night those guys were on fire! They were so passionate about Who and what they were singing about. We had a great time there and can’t wait to see the Inspirations again!