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The Happy Goodmans

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The Happy Goodman Family was a Southern Gospel group founded in the 1940s by Howard “Happy” Goodman.

The Happy Goodman Family began to be known for their singing around 1950. During the 1940s and 1950s there were various combinations of all eight brothers and sisters, with Howard being constant. Brother Sam pulled a stint in the Air Force while Brother Bobby was a truck driver and played for some rock and roll bands. Brother Rusty pulled a stint in service as well as singing with the Plainsmen Quartet afterwards. Howard married, and soon his wife Vestal joined the group as well. After all the sisters married, Howard and Vestal went into evangelistic work. Soon Sam joined them again followed by Rusty in 1962 and Bobby on bass guitar not long afterwards.

The fame of the Happy Goodmans grew considerably in the early-1960s. Appearances at the National Quartet Convention got them in front of promoters who in turn booked them across the country. In 1964, they were asked to become one of the flagship groups for a new Southern Gospel program called The Gospel Singing Jubilee along with The Florida Boys, Dixie Echoes, and The Couriers. This program soon became one of the most popular gospel music programs and would run for over twenty years. The Goodmans would soon become one of the most popular groups on the program, and would remain so for ten years till they left to start their own TV program the Happy Goodman Family Hour.

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