A singer and songwriter as well as a freelance writer, encyclopedist and the publisher of Southern Edition, an online publication devoted to the American South, Greg Freeman has grabbed the attention of industry professionals and gospel music lovers with his vocal and songwriting abilities. His depth of knowledge and passion for gospel music history have won him respect among academics and living gospel pioneers.
Greg has written biographical entries for major encyclopedias and interviewed a variety of gospel artists, including Bill Gaither, Babbie Mason, Ashley Cleveland, Wes Hampton, Gordon Stoker, Jimmy Carter (of the Blind Boys of Alabama) and the late Don Butler, a charter member and long-time executive director of the Gospel Music Association. His definitive articles on gospel songwriter Cleavant Derricks and blues artist Ida Cox have garnered international readership.
As an artist, Greg performs a soulful blend of progressive southern gospel and inspirational/contemporary Christian music with heartfelt conviction and fervor. Greg's music has found favor among young people who enjoy his fresh approach to southern gospel and older folks who appreciate that he has not abandoned the songs of yesterday. His diverse repertoire of self-penned numbers, traditional fare and modern worship songs offers something for everyone.
Influenced by a music-oriented church, Greg became captivated by gospel music early on and occasionally sang in the local group of which his mother was a part. "I couldn't have told you the difference between harmony and hominy as a kid, but I knew the music Mom sang or the music I heard on the radio every evening as I listened to Country Chapel on WNGC (out of Athens, Georgia) had to be the coolest stuff this side of Heaven!"
Perhaps the most annoying southern transplant since the days of carpetbaggers or the introduction of Kudzu, the South American imported fire ant (Solenopsis invicta), that tiny little critter with an unforgettable sting, is difficult to control and seemingly impossible to eradicate as its scientific name invicta (meaning "the unconquered one") indicates.
Some time ago a visitor took note of all the ant hills that had emerged in our lawn following a day or two of rain showers, and he assured me that he had a sure-fire solution. Knowing that eliminating the colony's queen is essential to wiping out the whole gang, I inquired whether his remedy could do so. "Sure," he enthusiastically replied.
"Buy you a can of snuff and sprinkle the snuff on top of the mound," he instructed. "The worker ants will take it back to the old lady and when she comes up to spit . . . you step on her!"
I suppose I walked right into that one!
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As Greg reflects upon the music of his youth, he says more contemporary forms of Christian music have also made a positive impact on his life. Perhaps in a gesture of compromise, Greg insists, "In a worship setting, I try to bridge the old with the new. For years, traditional music in the Church has either emphasized things like the birth of Christ and His crucifixion or Heaven and the hereafter. Contemporary Christian music, despite its criticisms by traditionalists, has acknowledged our everyday trials as well as our personal weaknesses, blemishes and scars."
"My scars are plentiful and my faults are many," he adds, but Greg is thankful for God's patience and grace. Greg believes music provides a means for sharing his experiences -- both the struggles and triumphs. "When people with real problems or conflicts in their lives hear something they can relate to," he says, "the impact of a song's message can be profound." In his songs, Greg has tried to write with honesty about real life, hoping someone will be touched. "I was saved at a young age, but since that time things haven't always been great. I've endured trying times, strayed from the Lord, doubted my own salvation and even questioned the reason for my existence."
Greg has been privileged to co-write songs with some great songwriters like Babbie Mason and veteran producer Cheryl Rogers. Gospel music fans throughout the world have seen him perform on Babbie Mason's talk show, Babbie's House, and he has also made appearances on Atlanta Live and Nite Line. "God just continues to open doors for me," Greg says, "and I'm looking forward to the things he has in store for me in the near future, both as a singer and songwriter."
Greg Freeman is pictured with Dove Award-winning recording artist Babbie Mason and Dr. Charles Novell of Novell Music School fame on the set of Babbie's House.
Here, Greg is pictured backstage with his good friend, Jimmy Carter, of the legendary Blind Boys of Alabama.
Scripture reveals to us the Great Commission that all believers should heed," Greg says, "and, as a Christian music artist, I feel it is especially important that my energy and creativity be applied toward the furtherance of God's kingdom." It's an awesome responsibility! Greg is convinced that Christian music must do more than simply entertain. "I know how powerful music can be," he says. "Songs have often spoken to me in ways sermons or lessons could not. One thing's for sure, though. Music can best stir the soul if God has stirred the musician. And I never want to stray from the leading of His Spirit. When I perform, I want the audience to be 'stirred,' but I realize that will occur only if we collectively open the doors of our hearts, welcome the presence of God's Holy Spirit and respond in obedience to its direction."
Greg concludes, "There's something special about Christians worshiping, praying and serving in one accord. When non-believers witness the uniting power of God they, too, desire to be transformed and experience what we have. As an artist, I want to encourage unity among churches and individual believers, and, in powerful ways, music can bridge divides, chase away the darkness and uplift our spirits, giving us the motivation to keep moving forward!"
"Today's guest is a fine singer, a beautiful songwriter with a heart that is so tender toward the things of God, and it all comes out in his songs." -- Babbie Mason introducing Greg Freeman on her talk show, Babbie's House, on February 7, 2008
"Thank you, Greg, for sharing your gifts with us this past Sunday. Your music was an integral part of the worship service, and I thank you for the messages you presented. Your talent is impressive and I'm grateful that you are using it for His glory!" -- Dr. Von Reynolds, Senior Pastor, Seneca Baptist Church, Seneca, South Carolina, November 30, 2009
Greg Freeman joined Bill and Gloria Gaither and the Homecoming Friends at Atlanta's Mount Paran Church of God on May 21, 2009 for Eva Mae LeFevre's homegoing service. Greg and Eva Mae had been friends for several years, and he is grateful for her wise counsel and encouagement. Greg says, "It meant so much that Eva Mae believed in me, and I'll always remember her telling me in 2004 that I have a 'very bright future' ahead of me."
"This is a man who truly loves to sing for the Lord . . . I recommend that you have him come to your church so he can bless your congregation as he had blessed ours . . . " -- Catalina Velez, former Minister of Music, First Baptist Church, Walhalla, South Carolina, July 15, 2002
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