75 years of the Silver Stars.

The Silver Stars gospel group of Orangeburg County, South Carolina enters their 75th year this fall, and they’ll celebrate the occasion on September 11, 2011 in Holly Hill, South Carolina. To purchase advance tickets, contact us at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address), and we’ll put you in touch with the appropriate parties.

When asked about the Stars’ longevity, vocalist Nehemiah “Slim” Small (who was only born the year that original manager Robert White Sr. assembled the first line-up) explained that “we know what people like and what people don’t like.” Mr. Small, who’s been with the group for 40 years (second only to George Inabinett, who’s clocked in a half century), also added that “the biggest things that break up a group are women and money.” Here’s a photo from one of his first years:

And here’s the 2007 line-up:

One staple of the Silver Stars’ programs throughout the years has been “The Bible Days,” and we are pleased to share a late-‘70s take that’s found on their only-ever 45-rpm release.

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Silver Stars “The Bible Days” (Smoke 45).

Sunday School

When Crawford Cornelius Jr. passed away in April of 2008, he was remembered for not only his music, but for his industrious tenure as a schoolteacher in the Columbia, South Carolina area. Befittingly, this song is appropriate for churchgoers and kindergarteners alike, blurring the line between church ballad and lullaby.

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“Have Faith” by Entertainment Unlimited, featuring Cornelius, Crawford

Sunday Gospel, #5

Today’s recommended listening material, the Gospel Stars No. 2 of Charleston Heights, South Carolina (“play” button located at bottom of post), from 1979.

While we’re on the topic, might these be the Gospel Stars (No. 1)?

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“Judgement Day” by the Gospel Stars No. 2

“Tell It Like It Is, Or Don’t Tell It At All”

The Pilgrims of Joy out of Fayetteville, North Carolina turn the heat up on critical churchgoers who may be more concerned with gossip than the gospel. Impassioned screaming and boisterous instrumentation make this cleverly disguised church track a real treasure. 

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“Tend to Your Business” by the Pilgrims of Joy

“That Greenville Sound”

Pitt Records was the house label for Roy Matthews’ Pitt Sound Studio, located in Greenville, North Carolina (in Pitt County, consequently). Fans of typographical errors can relish the Southern Spiritual’s possessive properties or the gripping case of Want v. Won’t, while gospel fans are encouraged to suspend their grammatical standards and enjoy this optimistic ditty.

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“It Want Be This Way (Always)” by Robert Fuller and the Southern Spiritual’s


The Carolina Soul website serves as a living encyclopedia of soul music made in North and South Carolina. We strive to share Carolinian songs and stories of the last half century, and we invite the input of musicians and fans. We hope you will contact us if you have information on bands or recordings from the region.