The name says it all.
Transitions, the newest release from Augusta-based IV Christ, marks a turning point in the gospel group’s ministry, Jerremy Williams said.
“It’s a season of growth in our own lives and the ministry,” he said.
Since 1997, IV Christ – pronounced “for Christ” – has produced contemporary gospel music with roots in both traditional gospel and R&B.
It’s a sound they call “R&G,” for rhythm and gospel.
“We don’t have the blues. We have the gospel, the good news,” Williams said.
In September, Oklahoma-based Tate Music Group rereleased the 16-track album, which, according to the group, features tighter harmonies and a more polished sound.
“We’re developing our craft. We’re exploring our sound with new voices and what we can do,” Williams said.
The group’s composition has changed a bit over the years. Today, the quartet is Tim Bryant, along with founding members Milliage Williams, Charles Jones and Jerremy Williams.
“Even in our individual ministries, God has taken us to a new level,” Milliage Williams said.
Milliage Williams is the musical director at Sharon Baptist Church, where Jerremy Williams is also pianist.
Jones is minister of music at Friendship Ministries in Appling, and Bryant is the youth choir director at Runs Missionary Baptist in Beech Island.
“This group has helped me grow,” Bryant said. “I think we’re all more mature in our faith.”
The new CD – and a series of concerts in Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina and Florida – has been met with enthusiastic response.
“It’s got a great message with it,” Jones said.
One of the songs, No Other Way, speaks of surrendering to God, Jerremy Williams said.
“What happens when life starts to bark back at you? This song is basically saying there’s only one way forward, and it’s to surrender yourself to God,” he said.
Songs from the new album will be performed at two concerts in early December. The group will play host to its annual benefit concert – on Dec. 15 this year – to help families in need.
“We get a list of people in need from local pastors in the CSRA,” Milliage Williams said.
Unwrapped toys and nonperishable food collected at the free concert will be distributed to those families. The gospel group hand-delivers the gifts in the days before Christmas.
“It’s the right thing to do when we’ve been given so much,” Jones said.