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Memorial to Charles Novell

     -  Born on August 31, 1942

    -  Christian, Husband, Father, Musician

    -  Sadly left us on January 17, 2020


"Charles was a true friend of The Homelighters Quartet. If we had a prayer concern, he would stop our practice session to offer up a prayer."

    Charles touched many lives.

    Dr. Charles Novell is a graduate of the world famous Cincinnati Conservatory of Music and holds a Doctorate of Music degree.  He has been involved in gospel music as a songwriter, arranger, recording producer, and performer for several decades.  He has produced over 2,500 albums in his career and has arranged and been a vocal coach for numerous groups, soloists and choirs over the years. Charles began teaching in the Stamps Conservatory of Music in the early 60's eventually becoming the Dean of the school. In 1978, JD Sumner handed the school over to Charles to run with Cecil Blackwood under the name of the National School of Christian Music.  Charles was loved by everyone who attended the singing school.  The school still runs today under the name of Charles Novell School of Music and is directed by his son, Rob Novell, and is held annually in Murray, Kentucky.

    Charles was a vocal coach and teacher for a number of Southern gospel artists including, The Blackwood Brothers, Kenny Bishop, Garry Sheppard, The Isaacs, Craig Nobles, Ivan Parker, Jeff Stice, David Brooks, and Charlotte Richie. As a recording producer he worked in the studio with such artists as Perfect Heart, The Blackwood Brothers, JD Sumner & The Stamps, The Kingsmen, The Hoppers, Jerry Goff, Bill Baize, Bobby Clark, Lavern Tripp, Steve Brock and many more.  He assisted us with our recordings to help us maintain the best sound we were capable of producing.


    Charles was emcee of the Midwest Gospel Singing Convention for the first four years. Gaylen Blosser started this three-day singing event in 2002.  

    He committed both his time and his talent to the betterment of the Homelighters Quartet.  He never hesitated to address an area of concern but he always handled the matter in a professional manner that left you feeling the love within this man.  He faithfully worked with our group on a weekly basis over the phone from both his home in Ohio and even after moving to Georgia.  At times, he would have us sing some old songs and hymns and upon finishing the song, he would express  how the song had touched him.  The emotions he felt from these old songs passed right along to the rest of us who felt the love and the blessing of his presence in our lives.  Charles was a true friend who has left his impression on not only our music but within our hearts.

    WORDS OF WISDOM from Charles:  "Those groups that are to continue will need to adjust to the changes. Today's congregation no longer wants to sit back and simply listen, they want to be a part of the worship."


    "We will always remember you, Charles - for your friendship, your heartfelt guidance for the quality of our music and for those wide-stretching arms that encircled everyone you touched with patience, understanding, and unconditional love.  Thank you for being our teacher, our mentor and most of all, our friend."

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    Charles 12 - Murray State    University