About Bells of Joy
If you don't know The Bells of Joy, then you don't know true gospel. If you don't know Gospel, then you'd better do your homework...
It started in the formative years of the 1930's and 40's when Gospel could be heard in a mainly acappella style, either in the form of choirs or guitar-playing evangelists' sermons. Soon, the harmonizing quartet sound became popular.
Initially under the name The Starlight Singers in the 40's The Bells came onto the scene with drum and guitar accompaniment and innovated the distinctive, rhythmical call and response counterpoint. This style is most reminiscent of quartet groups such as the Soul Stirrers, Dixie Hummingbirds and The Pilgrim Travelers. By 1951, the group had changed their name to The Bells of Joy and recorded for Don Robey's Duke/Peacock label. Their million-seller single, "Let's Talk About Jesus" went straight to the top ten R&B Billboard charts. At that time, only such Gospel greats as Sister Rosetta Tharpe and 5 Blind Boys had matched such a feat. The Bells went on to record for Wildcat Records, Chess/Checker and Nashboro Records achieving national recognition for their music.
Now, some 50 years later, the success of The Bells of Joy is the stuff of legends and their music is still going strong. The resurgence in the popularity of roots music has brought them into the spotlight once again. The re-recording of their signature hit, "Let's Talk About Jesus" (written by A.C. Littlefield) on Second Time Around gives you a taste of the rich quality of Gospel that is hard to find these days. Their explosive live performances continue to touch audiences young and old. They've worked long and hard and traveled many a difficult road for what they believe in. So, enjoy the sounds of Second Time Around and take with you a piece of history.