Down East Boys
The Down East Boys’ name is synonymous with gospel music. For over twenty-five years, this quartet has traveled from coast to coast, and in Canada and Mexico. Starting in eastern North Carolina, this group quickly established themselves as an up-and-coming artist with great potential. In 1990, the group was honored with the Singing News Fan Award for Horizon Group of the Year. Shortly after, with the demand for the group on the rise, the group began their journey into a full time ministry, traveling over 200 days and performing 180 concerts per year. In 1994, founding member and owner Sherrell Futral retired from the road, and 21-year-old lead singer Ricky Carden took over as owner and manager. In the years to come, the group would be afforded the opportunity to work with several of the affiliate evangelists of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, including Franklin Graham, Ralph Bell and Jim Wilson.The group also began working for the Southern Baptist Convention, performing at many state evangelism conferences around the country.
In their twenty-five years of travel, the group has recorded twenty-one projects with over thirty top forty songs for gospel music to their credit. There latest recording, Amen, was released in November 2011 to rave reviews. Chris White, owner of their record label, Sonlite Records, states “I have seen this group from the very beginning, and I feel this is their best work to date. Every song has a powerful message, heartfelt delivery and great vocal blend.”
Ricky Carden, owner and manager of the group, states, “This project is truly a work from our heart. Our goal has always been to choose songs that would encourage and challenge the Christian, while also reaching out to the lost, and pointing people to the cross, so that Jesus might be lifted up. If we fail to do this we have failed in our calling!”
Group members are vital to any ministry and The Down East Boys are blessed with a great group of men who love what they do and believe they have a calling on there lives. Ricky Carden, group owner and manager, has been a part of the Down East Boys for twenty-one years. In that time, he has guided the group through the ups and downs of ministry and held true to the challenge to reach unto all the world and share the gospel. Carden is joined by bass singer Stuart Cary from Ruston, Louisiana. Stuart has traveled with the group since 2001 and has become known for his rich bass tones. He is always a favorite among concert goers. Daryl Paschal joined the group in 2006. He was nominated as Horizon Individual of the Year in 2006 by readers of the Singing News, Gospel Music’s largest print publication. He has become one of the most recognized baritone singers in the industry. Newest member Tony Jarman joined the group in January of 2011 and became an instant hit with people all over the country. After earlier stints with Phil Cross and Poet Voices, Legacy Five, and The Old Time Gospel Hour Quartet, Jarman retired from the road life and began working for Dr. Jerry Falwell and Liberty University. Tony possesses one of the most powerful tenor voices in Gospel music. His delivery of a song is truly anointed and his passion for Christ is shown in every note.
In the past 25 years, the Down East Boys have been afforded many great accolades. But in the end, beyond all the success, you will find four men dedicated to serving Christ. Using their talents to encourage people and reach the lost is truly real success.