Kirk Talley

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Kirk Talley
Born (1958-06-09) June 9, 1958 (age 60)
Origin Tennessee, U.S.
Genres Gospel Music, Southern Gospel
Occupation(s) singer, songwriter
Instruments Piano Bass Guitar
Years active 1972 - 2012
Labels Sonlite, AMP Production Group[citation needed]

Kirk Lewis Talley (born June 9, 1958), is an American Southern Gospel performer/songwriter. Talley is best known for his time as a tenor singer with the legendary Gospel Quartet The Cathedrals, The Talleys, and also the family group The Hoppers, along with a very successful solo career as a singer and songwriter.

Early career[edit]

Born in Johnson City, TN, Talley was raised in Bulls Gap, Tennessee and graduated from Bulls Gap High School in 1976. He began performing Southern Gospel Music in 1972 with his brother Roger and sister Diane. He was a member of the groups "The Hoppers", The Cathedrals and The Talleys.[1] He joined the Cathedrals in 1979 and with the lineup of Talley, Mark Trammell, Glen Payne, George Younce, and Roger Bennett. During his time with The Cathedrals, Talley wrote a number of songs. Talley wrote his first # 1 song "Step Into the Water". The song remained at the top of the charts for nine months.[2] He then left in early 1984 to join his brother and sister in law, Roger and Debra, to form The Talleys where he sang tenor until 1992.

While with "The Talleys", Talley wrote the song "He Is Here".[3] The Talleys received the 1992 Dove Award for 'Song of the Year' for this song. It was also nominated for the 34th annual Grammy Awards that same year.[4]

In 1999, Talley formed The Trio with Anthony Burger and Ivan Parker.

Solo career[edit]

Talley began his solo career in 1993 and has performed across the United States and Canada. Talley's first #1 as a soloist came from his project titled "I Speak to You", with the song "Joy On the Other Side of Jordan".[5]

His project from 1995, 'Serenade', which would be his first project as a soloist on a major record label, produced two Top 10 charting songs, "Serenaded By Angels [6]" & "If He Hung the Moon [7]", but also a string of awards for Talley at the 1996 National Quartet Convention. The Gospel Voice magazine presented Talley with 3 Diamond Awards: Soloist of the Year, Songwriter of the Year, and Song of the Year for "Serenaded By Angels". The Singing News magazine presented him with the 1996 Fan awards for: Favorite Male Vocalist, Favorite Songwriter, and Song of the Year again for "Serenaded By Angels".[8]

In 1999, Talley released his first Christmas album called Talley Ho, Ho, Ho!. It has Fruitcake by Hee Haw Singers and I Pray on Christmas by Kingdom Heirs

Talley did not release a project in 2004. In 2005 he released a semi-popular live album entitled "Live at the River. My Story, My Song" which was his first album to be released on an independent music label since 1993, the rest of his projects in future years would be released on an independent label.

In 2009, after a five-year standstill from releasing projects due to bad press from an extortion attempt that Talley was a victim of in 2003, Talley released his album entitled "Beyond Words." This would be his newest release since 2005. Talley's comments on this release was "I am so excited about this release. I finally was able to find songs that encompasses a little bit of every style that I like. Beyond Words has to be my favorite CD released to this date. I think it's the most upbeat project that I have done in a long time. If you aren't moved by "When His Presence Fills This Place", you need a check up! It's the most awesome ballad I have sung in years. I just wish I had written it!"

Talley's most recent release as a soloist is his 2011 album Hymns of Hope.

In December 2012 Talley retired from singing after losing his singing voice from an ongoing complication with abductor spasmodic dysphonia. This led to his absence from the 2013 and 2014 Cathedrals Family Reunion.

Extortion attempt[edit]

Talley was the subject of an extortion attempt in 2003. Talley randomly met Walbert Farmer, a convicted felon, over an internet chatroom. Farmer attempted to blackmail Talley with allegations that Talley was an active and practicing homosexual and threatened to inform the public, Talley's record company, and other influential Gospel music artists and institutions if Talley did not pay him. Talley refused to do so, and contacted the FBI and they collaborated to arrest Farmer. When Farmer agreed to meet with Talley, Farmer, 39, was arrested and sentenced to a prison term and a fine.[9][10][11]

Personal life[edit]

In 2010 Talley was diagnosed with abductor spasmodic dysphonia, a vocal disorder that was affecting his ability to sing, by December 2012 it became so severe after a series of Botox shots that were supposed to give strength back to his voice which wound up making his voice worse, he left the road from singing. Talley issued this to the public toward the end of 2013 in a Facebook post which he said "ok i know i haven't posted much on here lately....but as you know I am no longer traveling or singing. I work full time for Belk, at Westtown Mall in Knoxville. I am a Ralph Lauren Polo specialist there and enjoy that. Vocally I am having trouble. I was diagnosed with Abductor Spasmodic Dysphonia and that has caused it to be very difficult to sing, and some days, even talk. Thanks for your prayers concerning that..."

He currently works in Sales and Merchandising for Dillard's at West Town Mall in Knoxville, Tennessee. Talley is still an active Gospel music songwriter and musician even with the loss of his singing voice. He is an avid Tennessee Volunteers Football fan.

Talley undergoes regular treatment for his vocal problems in the hopes that he may be able to sing again.

The Trio Members[edit]

Line-ups[edit]

1998-2006

(Under the Name "The Trio")

References[edit]

External links[edit]