NQC 2017: Monday Evening & NQC History, Pt. 1

by | Sep 26, 2017 | Concert Review, History, Major Concert Events, Reviews

2017 finds NQC comfortably settled in the fourth year in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee. 2017 is the 61st year NQC has been held since the first event in 1957, or, as the branding goes this week, 2017 is the 60th anniversary of the 1957 event.

I’m attending Monday-Wednesday evenings this year. I also plan to attend Tuesday Chapel, and the SGMA benefit showcase and Hall Of Fame induction Tuesday afternoon.

My reports this year will differ from reports in years past. I will be offering one highlight per report rather than a laundry list. Then, since this is the 60th anniversary of the first NQC, I’ll close each article with some historical facts about the event.

I did not make photos on Monday, but I do plan to make and share photos on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings. (My plan is to post those in separate galleries later in the week.)

Today’s highlight was seeing nearly 10,000 people united in support of our nation’s symbols. First, we were treated to the US Army’s Male Quartet singing the National Anthem and “God Bless The USA.” Promisedland Quartet’s bass singer K C Armstrong, who presently serves in the US Army, assembled this year’s quartet.

Later in the evening, Legacy Five devoted the majority of their set to patriotic themed songs. Of course, patriotic songs are sprinkled through NQC every year, but they stood out more today given the disrespect recently shown toward the National Anthem and the flag by several professional athletes. (I use the term “professional” only in the sense that they are paid for what they do. There is nothing professional about their behavior.)

Many people know the NQC was in Memphis several years, then in Nashville, then in Louisville, and finally in Pigeon Forge. You may not realize NQC has happened in two other cities. The first National Quartet Convention was held on October 19 and 20 in 1957 in Memphis, Tennessee. J D Sumner, Cecil Blackwood and James Blackwood of The Blackwood Brothers were the founders of the event. In 1958, NQC was shifted to July and expanded to a three-day event. In 1959, NQC moved to Birmingham, Alabama. It was held in Atlanta, Georgia in 1960.

From 1961 to present, NQC has had four homes.

1961-1970: Memphis
1971-1993: Nashville
1994-2013: Louisville
2014-present: Pigeon Forge

If you are attending in 2017 or subscribing to the webcast, please leave a comment with your thoughts!

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David Bruce Murray

David Bruce Murray

David Bruce Murray is a church music director in Ellenboro, NC. He is the author of Murray's Encyclopedia Of Southern Gospel Music and the owner of both SGHistory.com and MusicScribe.com. David plays piano for Southern Sounds Quartet and the Foothills Community Choir.


  1. lee65

    I thought Jonathon Wilburn, done an excellent job singing Midnight Cry, tore it up!!!

    • David Bruce Murray

      Yes, that was very good.


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