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Jim Hill

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Jim Hill is one of two historic figures in American gospel music with basically the same name. Like many aspects of gospel, they can be most easily separated according to race. While the man most often known as James Hill was a legend of black gospel and a member of the groups the Skylarks and the Fairfield Four, singer and songwriter Jim Hill comes from the white gospel ministry, where he is associated with preaching performers such as Bill & Gloria Gaither. As a songwriter, Hill's most famous contribution to the gospel repertoire is "What a Day That Will Be," a number that has been covered by groups such as the Greater Vision and the Horizon Quartet. Country superstars the Oak Ridge Boys also recorded material by Hill on the group's gospel projects. Hill established both his ministry and his presence as a performer on the gospel circuit in the early '60s. He released the first recording under his own name, named after his most famous song, only at the outset of the new millennium. Musically, he is known for a tenor voice with a purity that unfortunately can no longer be matched by the streams of Appalachia. In the first few decades of his career, he was also known for manic energy both on-stage and in the studio. Hill worked with groups such as the Statesman Quartet, the Stamps Quartet, and the Golden Keys Quartet. ~ Eugene Chadbourne