The Christianairs were a group based in Mississippi. They changed their name to Gold City at the beginning of 1980. The original members of Gold City were Bob Oliver (tenor), Jerry Ritchie (lead), Ken Trussell (baritone) and Dallas Gilliland (bass). When they began, Floyd Beck was the group owner. After the group relocated to Georgia, Tim Riley replaced Gilliland in the bass position. Harold McVey filled in for approximately three months until Riley joined Gold City in July of 1980.
Gold City quickly rose to prominence. In October 1981, they sang on the main stage at the National Quartet Convention. Garry Jones had just joined the group. The following spring, Brian Free replaced Bob Oliver at the tenor position. Ritchie moved to baritone when Ivan Parker joined to sing lead in early 1983. Free left briefly in the fall of 1983 but returned in the spring of 1984. Group owner, Floyd Beck, died in 1984. The following year, Tim Riley began managing the group, moving their headquarters from Georgia to Alabama. When the group moved, Jerry Ritchie vacated the baritone spot making room for Mike LeFevre to join Gold City. From 1984 to 1993, there were three baritones who sang for Gold City (Ritchie, LeFevre and Steve Lacey), but no changes at tenor, lead, bass and piano. Free, Parker, Riley and Jones made Gold City one of the most stable and talented combinations in the quartet industry. Songs like "In My Robe Of White", “I Think I’ll Read It Again,” "John Saw," “No Other Word For Grace But Amazing,” and “Midnight Cry” were popular during this time. Their last recording together was the critically acclaimed Acapella Gold (1993).
The next consistent lineup for Gold City was Jay Parrack (tenor), Jonathan Wilburn (lead), and Mark Trammell (baritone) along with Tim Riley (bass). These men sang together from 1996 to 2002. It should also be noted that Tim Riley's son Doug began playing drums for Gold City in 1989 and was also a consistent member during this time. Parrack and Trammell followed Free and Parker in 1994 with Steve Lacey moving to lead from baritone. David Hill sang lead on songs like "I'm Not Giving Up" prior to the arrival of Wilburn in 1996. During the 1990s, Gold City developed a trademark style that relied on brass heavy arrangements for their more driving songs and moving lyrics for their inspirational anthems. Trammell left in 2002. Trammell was replaced by Tim Riley's son, Danny, who had already been traveling with the group running sound and singing an occasional feature solo.
Jay Parrack left in 2004 after spending a decade at the tenor position, then Tim Riley announced his retirement as well. He turned over the management of Gold City to his sons Doug (drums) and Danny (baritone). Another significant change for the group occurred in 2005. Gold City had traveled with a band (dubbed the "Band Of Gold") for the bulk of their history, but they scaled back to using just a piano player and accompaniment tracks in 2005.
2006 was a tough year for Gold City. On January 31, 2006, drummer and co-manager Doug Riley was killed in an automobile accident.
Bill Lawrence had replaced Tim singing bass for the two previous years. After he left in 2006, Tim Riley filled in for a few months until Aaron McCune was hired to sing bass later in 2006. The twelve-year veteran lead singer Jonathan Wilburn left in 2008.
After Aaron McCune left in 2009, Tim reclaimed his old job again. From the stage, Danny Riley joked that his Mom had begged him to get his Dad out of the house. The next years were marked by a string of changes at the tenor and lead positions, but the keyboard position stabilized when Bryan Elliott joined in 2010 after filling a two-year stint with the Perrys.
In 2013, Gold City's bus caught on fire while the group was on tour. 18 months later in December 2014, another fire wiped out their bus, the barn they stored it in, their merchandise, stage clothes, and sound equipment.
Tim retired for the second time in 2014, and Chris West joined the group to sing bass at that point. Thomas Nalley came on board to sing tenor in 2015, and Scott Brand became Gold City's lead singer in 2016. January 2020 saw the return of Bruce Taliaferro to the lead singer position, but this arrangement only lasted until 2022, after which Cole Watson assumed the lead part.
The Band of Gold was reintroduced on select dates starting in 2021, with pianist Terry Wooten being joined by bus driver Russell Wise on bass guitar and Chris Williams on drums.
Singing News Charting Number One Songs
“I Think I’ll Read It Again” (April-June, 1984)
“John Saw” (April-July, 1985)
“When I Get Carried Away” (June-September, 1987)
“Midnight Cry” (January-June, 1988)
“Gettin’ Ready To Leave This World” (February 1990)
“One Scarred Hand” (November 1991)
“I’m Not Giving Up” (February 1996)
“In Time, On Time, Every Time” (February 1999)
“He Said” (March-April, 2000)
"Peter, James And John (March 2012)
Singing News Fan Awards:
Favorite Group (1988, 1989, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1993)
Favorite Traditional Male Quartet (2000, 2001, 2003)
Album of the Year (1989 - Movin' Up; 1991 - Windows Of Home; 1993 & 1994 - Pillars Of Faith; 2001 - Are You Ready)
Song of the Year (1987 - When I Get Carried Away; 1988 - Midnight Cry; 1993 - There Rose A Lamb)
Favorite Band (1998, 2000)
Favorite Video (1988 - Moving Up To Gloryland; 1989 - Movin' Up; 1992 - KingsGold with the Kingsmen Quartet)
2017 Gospel Music Association Hall Of Fame
Due to the large number of projects recorded by Gold City, the discography section has been divided into separate pages by decade. Please click on one of the links below to access the decade you wish to view.
1980s 1990s 2000s 2010s 2020s