The Hamilton Brothers – “Give The World A Smile”

First of all, what is not to like about this cover? Six happy guys, dressed sharp outside of a TV studio. Secondly, the back cover says that these gentlemen have done telethons for handicapped children. Thirdly, a guy on Discogs said his great grandfather is one of the guys on the cover, how cool is that? The Hamilton brothers reign from either Kentucky or Illinois – perhaps Missouri and they cut this album in 1979 on the Audio Creations label.

So, the album opens with the title track “Give the World a Smile” – and Leon Hawkins, who sings bass, delivers this one while the rest of the guys join in behind him, and it’s different, not bad, but different. Lots of vocal harmonizing on this one. Next we continue with “Joy Cometh” and this one I like a lot more than the title track, the differentiating between the two vocalists and the backing harmonizing is very nice. This one is a very good track. “Jesus is Mine” comes next, and the song is good, I do like the arrangements on this one with the different vocalists taking turns in the singing duties. “Showers of Blessings” comes next, and it’s a slower song, well done with great piano playing, a bit slow for me, but still enjoyable. “One More Time” comes next, and it’s a good track with some nice vocal harmonizing, it’s a decent track – these guys are really talented but not exactly hitting what I like in my gospel music. “I’ll Sail Home” ends the A-Side, and it’s a good track, the vocal harmonizing and the chorus work on it are pretty good. I was wrong – or well, the back cover track listing was wrong, “He’ll Hold My Hand” ends the A-Side, and it’s a nice track, and the tenor vocals by Carl Sarten are good.

One Day at a Time” opens the B-Side, and that is a classic song, and these guys just open it up amazingly. So far, this one really stands out for me as the best track on the album, it’s done amazingly. “Standing on Solid Rock” comes next, and hey, this one is pretty good, I do like the vocals in this one as well. “Heavens Jubilee” comes next, this one is another one of those group harmony tracks, where we get a taste of each of the vocalists abilities, solo and as a group. We go onto the track “I Will Meet You in the Morning” and it’s another vocal harmony track, but with the focus now on the lead vocals by Charlie Hamilton – or I’m guessing. I’m not really sure, but it is decent. “Learning to Lean” comes next, and it’s another vocal harmony one, but this time with a solo by the bass vocalist, Glen Hawkins. It’s a relaxing track. “It’s Worth It All” ends the album, and all in all, it’s not a bad album, it’s a nice relaxing listen, and fun if you’re into male gospel vocal harmony group – personally, not my cup of tea, but I generally can’t say anything bad about this album as it was pretty decent.

Catalog Number:

Tenor Vocals – Carl Sarten
Lead Vocals – Charlie Hamilton
Baritone Vocals – Leon Hawkins
Bass Vocals – Glen Hawkins
Piano – Larry Hargrove
Bass Guitar – Chris Clark
Recorded at Audio Creations, Paducah, KY.
Engineered & Remixed by George Cumbee
Photos – Gene Boaz
Mastered by John Eberle

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