Gayle Sons the matriarch of the family explains that she has traveled and sang her entire life with her family known as the “Conway Family.” “We began just singing in local churches but we soon evolved into a wonderful evangelistic ministry she shared with her parents and siblings. Before long a young man, Wayne Sons would catch the eye of Gayle and marriage followed. Soon after their marriage they began their ministry as, “The Sons Family.” The original members of the group consisted of Gayle, Wayne, Greg, and Charlotte Sons. Over time Gayle explains several members came and went but for a 10 -year span Gayle, Charlotte and Eric Baker sang and released their music to radio. As with many groups, whether family or not, time, circumstances, and ministries of individuals change. Charlotte and Eric left the group to spend time with their family and pursue their own ministries, while Gayle spent time caring for her parents before their passing. Gayle Sons tried traveling with others but states, “ nothing seemed to work the same. I finally just gave it all to God and told Him if He wanted me to travel, He would just have to send someone. I continued to sing here and there and at my home church for several years.” Just as we all know - God has His own timing and own way of meeting our needs and desires. Gayle’s son Greg and wife Kim approached Gayle and revealed they felt the call of God to travel and sing! So, in June of 2016, The Sons Family once again joined talent, anointing, and calling of God to travel and spread the Gospel of Christ in song.
This family group is blessed with an enormous amount of talent to play and write music. Greg Sons describes himself,” I myself am a kind of “Jack of all trades, master of none.” Greg plays guitar, bass, piano, harmonica, drums and others, and states his mom (Gayle) is about the same- plays just about anything! He went on to say his wife; Kim is learning the piano but doesn’t hold much confidence in her teacher-, which happens to be himself. The Sons Family has been blessed over the years with many memorable concerts so I had to as Gayle if there was one particular concert that held a special memory for her. She described her favorite, “ A singing in Pigeon Forge at Boyd Bear Barn, they had the biggest Christmas tree I had ever seen with a stage set up and a group of singers scheduled to perform. They learned we were in town and asked us to join them and sing on stage. We began to perform “O Holy Night” and it began to snow, everyone in the place heard us sing and started to gather around. It was amazing!” She described one more concert with a deep sentiment to her. “ In Limo, Oh. a sister had been in a wheel chair since an accident 6 years earlier. The doctors had said she would be crippled the rest of her life. I felt the Lord say, ”Pray for Her.” God started moving for her right then and there and by the end of the night, she was miraculously healed! It was Awesome!”
The Sons Family may be the only Southern Gospel group I know of to ever sing at a major “Biker Rally”. Greg Sons shared his most memorable event being a scheduled singing in Indiana known as “Hog Days”. He describes the event to me,
“ It was one of the original rally’s in the U.S. and we were the only Christian group present. The event coordinators stated they were trying to incorporate all types of music. We sang and ministered to thousands of bikers that day that didn’t expect to hear about Jesus. It was Awesome!” The Lord always knows where we will be in the next few years and the situations we will encounter so I guess Greg and Kim’s years as youth pastors and worship leaders proved to be great training for ministering to a biker group. It is great to see every avenue of ministry as a blessings and with the awesome services there are also a few that are classified as bazar, humorous, and even scary at times. Every group that travels has at least one story to share and The Sons Family is no different. Gayle recalls one particular event as a very awkward, but humorous encounter. “ I was in Casey County Kentucky when a man approached me with a stern look and said; “ I owe you a quarter”. I told him I thought he was mistaken but he insisted, “ No ma’am, I always said I would give a quarter to anyone who was uglier that I was.” We both had a wonderful laugh and were close friends for years until he passed away. I took his quarter though!”
Greg explains that most of the humor in their group comes from his mother Gayle and her sayings- “Gaylisms” as he calls them. But Greg does have one humorous event that occurred while they were on stage. “ We were singing on stage with live music and we all noticed that the beat of the music was progressively getting slower and slower. We turned to the bass player to see what the cause might be and noticed that he was slouching in the chair because - He Had Fallen Asleep While Playing!”
Down time is not something most groups experience, but on occasion there will be an opportunity to indulge in some relaxation. I asked the Sons Family- just what do you do for enjoyment when off the road? Greg states that Gayle likes to visit other singings and listen while his wife enjoys crocheting and embroidering. Hannah, their daughter is pretty much a typical teenager listening to music, watching movies, and hanging out with friends. Greg and son Samuel though have a somewhat different form of relaxation. “ I am kind of a geek “, he confesses. “I like Star Wars and super hero stuff and Samuel and I enjoy playing video games together. “ In addition to traveling with their family group, they do hold public jobs. Kim works as a teller at a local bank, Father- in -Law Wayne Sons works on a natural gas pipeline, but they are hoping to travel full time singing in 2017. When I ask someone if they are full time ministry, I receive all sorts of replies, but I found Kim Son’s answer to be one of the best I have received. “ As far as full time ministry, life is full time ministry whether you have a job or not, it is our job to share Jesus everywhere.”
The Sons Family explains their desire is to be able to travel full time singing in the up coming year to see as many people as they can saved and healed. Gayle reveals,
” We feel our country needs revival.” Greg agrees with his mother that revivals are in their future. Greg views ministry in a very serious way, “ We believe that ministry is more than singing a set of music and selling some product in the back. I want to see people’s lives changed.” Since Gayle has been in ministry since early days of growing up I wanted to find what changes she has noticed in church today. Gayle says she finds the changes in our church world over the years disturbing. “ There was a time when there was a gospel radio station in every state that was powerful, now it seems like that is dwindling drastically. Lots of churches have closed their doors to singing groups due to expense or just lack of desire from people. I have seen churches close their doors on nights they used to have church because people are not coming like they used to. Many churches have changed to contemporary or praise/worship and don’t really have many Southern Gospel groups. The Sons Family has adapted their musical style to accommodate the changing styles of music. Greg says, “ Now mom is southern gospel to the core, no questions! We are slowly breaking her into more contemporary style music and I emphasize- Slowly! I personally am more of a bluesy, soul style person while my wife; Kim is a worshipper, but also likes southern gospel. Altogether we have an eclectic mix of music that highlights different genres of gospel music.”
To be talented and anointed to write your own songs is a great blessing but not an easy task. I asked Greg where he finds his inspiration for new song? “ On this latest project the title track “ This Time Around” was inspired from my younger years in Christ. There were several issues that I faced where I would fall on my face, then get up again and again. You can’t give up during those times, you just have to push on and hold on…. This time around. Most of our songs originate from personal experiences and just the goodness of God. Previously my mom and sister Charlotte wrote the majority of the songs for the group as well as several wonderful people we met on our way.
I asked this group- what do you want people to know most about The Sons Family? They all agree that they want people to know, “ we believe in being real. We don’t like doing shows and putting on a mask and being different behind the scenes. If you are a child of God, you should act like one 24/7. We want people to see God when they look at us. Whether you remember our names or not is irrelevant, we want you to know Jesus.
The Sons Family is definitely one that we will be seeing and hearing from more and more in the gospel music field. They have been in the top 5 for New Group of the year at the National Quartet Convention as well as several Top 40 and top 100 songs in the Singing News Charts. This Sons Family will be attending Fan Fare in Somerset, KY for 2017 and would love to meet each one there.
You may like their page on Facebook - facebook.com/thesonsfamily or follow on twitter @thesonsfamily or contact their website at www.thesonsfamily.net Purchase their music from itunes, Apple Music, or Shazam.
If you are interested in having the Son’s Family at your church or concert event please do not hesitate to call Randall Wilds at New City Talent’s office.
We look forward to hearing from you on scheduling the Son’s Family for your next event.