Additional personnel includes: Dorothy Combs Morrison.
Originally released as a 2 LP set.
Personnel: Dorothy Morrison, Betty Watson, Donald Cashmere, Trumaine Davis, Elaine Kelly, Rueben Franklin, Ruth Lyons, Margaret Branch (vocals).
Director: Edwin Hawkins.
Arranger: Edwin Hawkins.
There are several excellent Edwin Hawkins best-of compilations around, and they all seem to be called OH HAPPY DAY (the title of Hawkins's career-making 1969 hit). But BMG's concise 10-track collection of the same name is as good as any, focusing as it does on the uplifting, neo-soul gospel the group was turning out in the early '70s.
Hawkins is considered a key figure in updating gospel's church-bound vibe with the more pop-directed sounds of soul and R&B (providing a musical mirror image of what artist's like Ray Charles and Aretha Franklin did earlier in '60s when infusing pop forms with gospel styles), and there is plenty of evidence of that here. Still, there's no mistaking the aim of this music: from the lyrics (titles like "Jesus, Lover of My Soul" convey the gist), to the exuberant sounds of the full choir, this is the sound of faith in action.