They began their life as a quartet and as one of the premier groups in gospel music. There wasn't a weak link in the chain, neither vocally or instrumentally. Joe joined the group in the fall of 1964. After Jake Hess left the group in'65, the new members continued the sound that made The Imperials famous.
We have had some very talented individuals in the group from time to time, but it seemed the Baritone spot changed most often,
first Roger Wiles (photo on the left) then Greg Gordon (photo on the right) and the group that garnered the most attention, with Sherman Andrus (photo below).
Just like Elvis Presley had experienced in the 50's, The Imperials had real fans who didn't like their new look and sound. They broke down gospel music barriers in the late 60's, with their vocal approach to Gospel Music, and chose a more 'comtemporary look and sound', over the traditional look and sound of Southern Gospel, and were considerd by many to be a 'front runner' in new 'Contemporary Christian Movement' that started on the West Coast! This was a real turning point for us, but for Gospel Music in general. The result of all these efforts was that we took the gospel music world by storm, and set a new Standard in that industry! I am so happy, and fortunate to have been a part of that group, during that time...
Yikes...That's 'Duke Ellington there!
The photo above is one of my all time favorites, because of Duke Ellington, in the middle.
We appeared on the Mike Douglas show. That's Mike next to the Duke, and our Old Friend, Jimmy Dean on your right.
The 'Mike Douglas' Show...Jimmy Dean-co-host
L-R...Joe Moscheo, Sherman Andrus, Jim Murray, Terry Blackwood, Armond Morales
Those same ugly suits, w/ Carol Channing
The Imperials have won 12 Grammys, 13 Dove Awards, and were inducted, as a group, into the GMA Gospel Music Hall of Fame in 1998!
Joe Moscheo was inducted in 2007 for his individual contributions to the World of Gospel Music.