Kingdom HeirsView In iTunes
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Brothers Steve and Kreis French founded the Kingdom Heirs in 1981, as a vehicle for their musical ministry. They grew up in a religious home in East Tennessee and started publicly performing the way that many contemporary Christian groups do — through their churches. Eventually they began performing regionally and settled on a quartet of singers with Steve French singing baritone, Eric Bennett singing bass, David Sutton singing tenor, and Arthur Rice on lead. Kreis French played bass in the instrumental trio that accompanied the vocal quartet, which included drummer Dennis Murphy and keyboardist Jeff Stice. This large ensemble did very well on the Southern contemporary gospel circuit, performing at Silver Dollar City (which would later become Dollywood) and through the release of their debut, Just Arrived, on Morada in 1982. In 1986, they were asked to be resident performers at Dollywood. Because of the theme park's constant flow of country and Christian music fans their residency greatly increased their national audience and in 1989, the group released Steppin' on the Bright Side on Arrival. Spurred by the demand of their growing audience, they released seven records on Sonlite over the next five years, including Forever Gold (1995), Christian Family (1996), Anchored (1997), My Father Is Rich (1997), The Journey Home (1999), A Christmas of Celebration (1999), and City of Light (2000).