The Speer Family has always been one of favorite singing groups. Their excellence and choice of songs modeled for us a way to do ministry. We were influenced by the sight of Brock praying at a Nazarene camp meeting altar. We saw the depth of the well from which their passion came.
The Speers were immaculate musicians playing on albums I wouldn’t have guessed. Chet Atkins booked Ben and Brock to sing a back-up trio with Gordon Stoker from the Jordanaires on several Elvis Presley early recorded songs.
Legendary Ben Speer was the musical director of the Gaither Homecoming Series. A friend who traveled with the Speers says Ben was a perfectionist at the piano and his sense of rhythm was impeccable. Ben went to be at home with Jesus last week.
That reminded me of an evening when we were on the program with the Speers in eastern Indiana at an outdoor concert. I think we were at a race track. It was a great event for us. Then it started to rain. We grabbed sound equipment and moved into a church in town. The singers, including us, sat in the choir loft slightly soaked to the skin. The Speers warmed our hearts. Brock and Faye Speer, Jeannie Johnson was with them, Diane Mays was in the troupe and Susan Speer was on that trip. And Ben.
I sat at the bass end of the piano. At one point it seemed to me they should sing, “Feelin at Home in the Presence of Jesus.” I enjoyed the piano licks on their arrangement and I knew if we were singing, the mood was just right for that song. I leaned toward Ben and requested they sing that song. When they ended the song they were singing, Ben did the piano run introducing “Feelin”. It just seemed right. A message for the moment–and now.
The legend and excellent musician is home with Jesus. He, no doubt, is feeling at home.
I couldn’t find an online track of the Speers singing the song. Here are the Booth Brothers singing “Feeling at Home” which is one of my favorite songs.
©2017 D. Dean Benton firstname.lastname@example.org
“…putting my feet right under His table….”