Module 2: Artist Interviews
James Marvell

On the 19th of July 2009 James Marvell got word through Nashville booking agent Jim Case about the July 14th passing of Country Showcase America Record’s president Frank Gosman.  Frank was instrumental in building the careers of many in country music including the early 70s duo The Country Cavaleers.  Gosman’s CS Jamboree out of Beltsville, Maryland became the main stop for dozens of country stars who would pass through Baltimore and DC on the way to their shows in the 70s and 80s.

Exclusive Interview With James Marvell


James remembers well the many times he and former Mercy member Buddy Good, known as The Country Cavaleers in the 70s would stop at The CSA Jamboree for a special show!  Marvell and Jim Case will always remember their friend and country music pioneer Frank Gosman of CSA Records.

After forming The Cavaleers James and Buddy heard the call of another voice – the voice of Jesus.  They decided to take His direction, devoting their live’s work to Christ and arming themselves in a war against drugs.

“I felt the mission to go into Country Music and steer kids away from drug abuse.”  The new duo Country Cavaleers made up of Good and Marvell was an oddity because of the members long hair.  You’ve got to remember it was right after the movie Easy Rider, ” explains Marvell.

But thanks to their manager John Centinaro, a childhood friend of James and Buddy they got the chance to perform with such major stars as Faron Young, Freddy Fender, Barbara Mandrell, Conway Twitty, Loretta Lynn and many of the Grand Ole Opry legends.

TV appearances included ABC’s Wilburn Brothers, plus several of the early morning Ralph Emery TV shows at WSM.  Future stars Don Williams and Dickie Lee produced their first record.  John Centinaro also helped to manage the group Mercy in the late 60s.

The MGM/CSA recording duo Country Cavaleers disbanded in 1976.

Marvell went solo in 1976 turning his attention back to Gospel Music and the original calling on his life which only got stronger in 1973 when he accepted Jesus as Savior through the ministry of Bob Harrington aka The Chaplin of Bourbon Street. In 1974 James met another powerful minister who inspired him greatly, evangelist Leroy Jenkins. He began making special singing appearances on the Leroy Jenkins Crusades all across America during the middle to late 70s and even took a musical program to a South Carolina prison in the 80s to perform for Jenkins and his other co-inmates. History shows, Jenkins was given a pardon. It was during this time that James recorded a country version of the Jack Sigler original “Love Can Make You Happy” which even jumped into Billboard and Cashbox thanks to the help of record promoter Mike Borchetta and the help of Mr. Harold Lipsius at Jamie Records in Philadelphia. Mr. Lipsius who was involved with the Pop hit thought James did a great job with the country version. Turn your sound on and listen to another of James Marvell’s country hits at Another crucial turn for Marvell in the 70s is when he met Teresa Hannah, co-host of the popular gospel TV show, Nashville Gospel.

It was during one of those early Nashville Gospel tapings that James Marvell met Dr. Bobby Jones who in 1978 asked Marvell to perform his dramatic composition “Prophecy” on one of his early gospel shows at WSM. Bobby Jones saw way ahead, that the song “Prophecy” would stand the test of time! In the 80s James turned his attention to designing jewelry for country music stars. To see more go to the “Museum” link on this website. [ In 1986 Johnny Cash, who remembered Marvell from his Country Cavaleer days, called him …”One Of The Finest Singers Around.” ]

* Marvell credits the early 90s and the small friendly town of Branson Missouri for the inspiration to follow Christian Country & Country Gospel Music. It was there in Branson that James joined Country Legend Willie Nelson (through Frank and Jeanie Oakley) who opened his theatre to sunday worship services and also featured Marvell’s Country Cavaleer exhibit in his Willie & Friends Museums in both Nashville and Branson. Every weekend the Johnny Minick family would bring their anointed musical sounds and preaching to Nelson’s Branson theatre. James Marvell became part of the artist line-up and also helped to promote the services into the largest weekend gospel programs in Branson’s history! The worship services became the talk of the town in the early 90s and today there are many such weekend gatherings throughout all of Branson, Missouri. In 2005 James scored another #1 hit with a song written by Branson country legend Jim Owen. Marvell is also thankful to Juliet Massey and his aunt Irene for encouraging him to come back into music after a long absence. Massey wrote the lyrics to the song “Banking On Jesus” which he performed on The Pat Boone Show in 1996 (music by Tommy Crews). “Banking On Jesus” went to #1 in Christian Country/Country Gospel for James Marvell but more important were the God inspired lyrics by songwriter Juliet Massey.  [ Note: Marvell will soon have a link and display of the Branson Newspaper articles about the historical worship services in the early 90s. We hope you come back again to view them. ]

The new millenium now finds James Marvell still at it with over a dozen christian hits and noted TV appearences on many International TV Networks like Gospel Country with Jimmy Snow, TBN, Nashville Gospel, Bobby Jones, The TCT Network and The Pat Boone Show. “Prophecy”, “NewAgeWorld” and “America You Must” by Marvell have been airing as theme songs on the worldwide prophetic radio and TV program NEWSWATCH MAGAZINE, hosted by David J. Smith reaching every city in the U.S.A. daily.>>>>>>
JUST IN! Drop by the new museum of James Marvell’s Music History at this site by going to the Home Page and clicking on “Museum.” There you will see classic photos from The Country Cavaleers! You will also spot former manager John Centinaro behind the scenes on stage at a Cavaleer show and see the reaction from fans young and old who loved James and Buddy! Read old clippings and see photos with country legends. See if you can find Bobby Bare, Charlie Pride, Kenny Rogers, Porter and others who The Cavaleers would appear with in the 70s! If any fan has any old clippings, photos or articles on The Cavaleers or Mercy please email them to James Marvell. Thanks and enjoy the history!

Contact Marvell at: (813) 505-4966 e-mail: P.O. Box 151952 Tampa, Florida 33684-1952 Website: