Arthur Rice ready to take new role with SGMA
LOUISVILLE, KY – With their annual meeting held at the 2013 National Quartet Convention, the Southern Gospel Music Association elected a new president. Taking over in 2013 will be The Kingdom Heirs’ own, Arthur Rice.
An active SGMA member for many years, Rice has served a variety of roles for the SGMA ranging from handyman all the way to Vice President. Speaking on his new role, “I think it’s a tremendous responsibility,” Rice explained. “There is plenty of work ahead of us but so much to be excited about.”
Set to take a larger role later this year, Rice is already focused on the mission of the SGMA, “It’s important for us to continue the heritage of Southern Gospel for ourselves and the generations to come. We cannot move forward without knowing how we got here.
The SGMA organized to do exactly what Rice described – to preserve and further the rich tradition and history of Southern Gospel music and its message. Regardless of denomination and church affiliation, the association aims to promote the message of Jesus Christ through song.
It’s clear Rice is aware of the Southern Gospel’s history and the message of the SGMA, “When gospel music started, our culture was coming out of a dark and difficult time. These songs and hymns were written to encourage the saint. I think our nation is trying to recover from a similar time and our music reminds people there are brighter days ahead.”
The SGMA Hall of Fame and Museum is located at a place very familiar to Rice – inside Dollywood in Pigeon Forge, TN. He knows the unique opportunity the Hall of Fame’s location presents, “For those not familiar with our music, they can be introduced to Southern Gospel, and then go next door to see the history behind the music come alive.”
The 2013 SGMA Induction Ceremony is set for October 2nd honoring the latest class of legends and innovators of Southern Gospel. “What makes our Hall of Fame so special,” Rice continued, “is that we honor, yet don’t idolize the individuals in it. It’s much more important to recognize why we all do this – to proclaim the message of Christ.”
“It’s certainly not about us as artists, it’s entirely about someone much greater than ourselves.”
You can support the SGMA and their mission by purchasing a membership online for only $20 per year. Follow Dollywood’s operating schedule to personally visit the SGMA Hall of Fame and Museum – as well as Arthur Rice and The Kingdom Heirs – from March through December and visit them online at SGMA.org and on Facebook.