Holmes Brothers, 1992

Quickly established as significant new names on the blues scene with the release of their first two albums, The Holmes Brothers are musicians of great breadth and resourcefulness and, even more, of a rare talent for finding fresh joy, love and pain out of material they have played for years. For the blues outfit, a gospel album felt like a natural move.

Brothers Sherman and Wendell grew up in Christ Church, Virginia, where their family still lives, and are long-time members of the Calvary Baptist Church. Popsy Dixon was born in Virginia and grew up in Brooklyn, New York, singing in Pentecostal churches.

The Holmes Brothers' music exhibits a remarkable breadth of influences, all with an affinity for the spiritual in music. Recorded at the 1991 Real World Recording Week, all sorts of unexpected musicians turn up, with guest appearances by musicians from China, Tanzania, Ireland, Lapland and the UK.


  • If it’s the rough-edged drama of gospel music that you want, you can hardly do better than ‘Jubilation’...the performances are remarkably original...it’s an enthralling album. 6 May 1992 The Washington Post (USA)
  • This is a most unexpected treasure that is going to make a lot of people sit up and listen. A record of the year without a doubt. Folk Roots (1992) (UK)
  • ...the first Real World recording project spotlighting American musicians...they’re not simply reproducing the music of their youth...they’re reinventing it. ‘All Night, All Day’ is transformed into a dizzingly international chorale, powerful enough to conjure the sunniest of Sunday mornings. Philadelphia Enquirer (USA)
  • ...uplift of effortless ensemble singing. ..the sound veers toward spiritual swing in this outing, the Holmes trademarks remain: a blend of gritty guitar from Wendell, Sherman’s thoughtful bass, and the uplift of effortless ensemble singing. Q Magazine (UK)
  • ..rocking rhythm and soul trio cut loose on their favourite church-wrecking hymns recorded live with superb accompaniment from the cream of the world beat circuit." (Canada) The Record (Canada)
  • ..at once spine-shivering and ebullient, this music just takes you higher. July 1992 Mirabella (USA)
  • On ‘Jubilation’ the Holmes Brothers blend the age-old traditions of American music into a unique whole... ...creating a sound both entirely new and instantly recognizable. Rolling Stone (1992) (USA)