Friday, March 14, 2014
Southern Gospel Music Executive, Norman Holland, Passes Away
Norman began his Gospel music career in radio promotions at the Benson Company in 1980, and through the years became a catalyst in the careers of such legendary artists as the Cathedral Quartet, the Speer Family, the Kingsmen Quartet, J.D. Sumner and the Stamps Quartet, Gold City, Jeff and Sheri Easter, and Greater Vision. Later, Holland headed the A&R department for Chapel Records (now Spring Hill) where he worked on the Gaither Homecoming Series and helped launch the careers of Brian Free and Assurance and the Martins.
For the past 16 years, Holland served artists as Vice President of A&R at Daywind Records where he built one of the top labels in the genre by guiding the careers of Greater Vision, the Perrys, Legacy Five, the Booth Brothers, Brian Free and Assurance, the Nelons, Karen Peck and New River, the Mark Trammell Quartet, Mark Lowry, Sisters, Barbara Fairchild, and many more. In recognition of his tremendous impact on Southern Gospel music during his career, Holland received a lifetime achievement award from the Southern Gospel Music Guild in 2012.
Greater than all of his accomplishments in a 35-year career, Holland will be best remembered as a friend to artists. “There may never be another who cares for artists like Norman cared,” shared Ed Leonard, President of Daywind Records. “He was loved by all. This is a heartbreaking loss for all of us who loved Norman, but a tremendous gain for heaven above.” Added Dottie Leonard-Miller, founder and CEO of Daywind, “the wonderful memories of working and sharing life with Norman for 16 years are precious. I will cherish them as I cherished him.”
Speaking on behalf of the many artists Norman Holland touched with his grace, compassion, and love, Gerald Wolfe of Greater Vision said, “Norman and I had a great working relationship for 27 years, but more importantly, he was one of my closest friends. His laughter was contagious, and his larger-than-life, magnetic personality always lit up any room he was in. Gospel Music has lost one of its most innovative and influential behind-the-scenes personalities. I have lost a friend. But not for long. I know where he is.”
Funeral services for Norman will be held at 2 p.m. on Saturday, March 15th, 2014, with visitation taking place from 1 p.m. until 2 p.m. that day. The funeral and visitation will take place at Sorrell’s Funeral Home, 2744 W Magnolia Ave, Geneva, Alabama, 36340, Phone:(334) 684-9999. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Norman Holland Memorial Fund c/o Norman’s sister, Edith Brown, 1209 Glenwood Street, Dothan, Alabama, 36301. The balance of the fund after funeral expenses will be donated to the Gospel Music Trust Fund.
There will be a memorial service in honor of Norman held in Nashville within the next month.