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The Holmes Brothers

The Holmes Brothers' unique synthesis of gospel-inflected R&B harmonies, accompanied by good drumming and rhythm-based guitar playing, gives them a down-home rural feeling that no other touring roots music group can duplicate. Brothers Sherman and Wendell Holmes, along with drummer Popsy Dixon (the falsetto voice), are the group's core members, although they occasionally tour with extra musicians. All three harmonize well together. The Holmes Brothers are so versatile, they're booked solid every summer at folk, blues, gospel, and jazz festivals, as they play a style of music that is a gumbo of church tunes, blues, country, funk, reggae, roots rock, and soul. Although people like Bo Diddley and especially Jimmy Reed were early influences on Wendell and Sherman, gospel music also played an important role in their respective upbringings.

Although they'd been performing in Harlem for years, the Holmes Brothers -- originally from Christchurch, VA -- have only recently become international touring stars. Thanks to a fair deal at Rounder Records, the group released five recordings for that label, beginning with a 1989 release, In the Spirit. When this album made waves and got them off and running on the festival and club circuit around the U.S. and Europe, they followed it up two years later with Where It's At (1991), Soul Street (1993), and Promised Land (1997). The group's career has been aided by the interest of people like Peter Gabriel, who recruited them for his WOMAD world music festivals in England and who also recorded them in a gospel context on the album Jubilation, for his Real World subsidiary of Virgin Records in 1992.

Joan Osborne was also a supporter of the group. Early in her career Osborne befriended the Holmes Brothers and eventually took them on tour as her backing band when she opened for Bob Dylan in 1997. She produced the group's first release on Alligator Records, Speaking in Tongues, in 2001. The group then released the seminal Simple Truths in 2004. Three years later, State of Grace, an album of both originals and covers (including ones by Hank Williams, Cheap Trick, Lyle Lovett, and Elvis Costello), came out. A fourth Alligator release, Feed My Soul, appeared early in 2010. ~ Richard Skelly & Al Campbell, Rovi
full bio

Selected Discography

Comments

rkohl15
When I want to feel good about myself and others the Holmes Brothers
end up on.
Ron Kohl
"Rounding Third"
Sherman, Wendall and 'brother' Popsy get several genres 'right':
Blues
Gospel
Soul
I think they've won awards as 'Best Blues Band' one year then 'Best Soul Album' another year.
I first heard them as blues singers at Dan Lynch's in NYC and was duly impressed.
One of them beat cancer recently.
Versatile, talented
and blessed.
dlc
Hi
Good stuff y all
gelt
So glad I found this!
The Holmes Brothers' thrilling "Those Memories of You", featuring a dazzling lead vocal by Joan Osborne ranks as one of the best songs of the past ten years.
Some of the best music I have heard in such a long time. I heard them driving today on WYEP radio, a public radio station in Pittsburgh!
jayespangler
loving this ! its simply got it all . rythem , harmony ,and TRUTH .
amen!!!!
frannie1024
sweet, very sweet
I can't get the music to play
Very nice!
I love this song. I love how they harmonize with each other.

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