Group Members

(Partial List)

1st Tenor
Dexter Benjamin (1969-1977, 2011-2012)
Johnny Parrack (1977-1979?)

2nd Tenor (Lead)
Norman Benjamin (1969-1979?, 2011-2012)

Dean Lawrence (1969-1979?, 2011-2012)

Bill Gant (1969-1976?)
Dallas Gilliland (1977?-1979?)

Organ and Piano
Leon Frazier (1969-1979?)

The Heismen (1969-1979; 2011-2012)


In the late 1960s some young men from around Corinth and Booneville, Misissippi started singing together. They were Dexter Benjamin, Norman Benjamin, Dean Lawrence, and Bill Gant. A little later, organist Leon Frazier joined the boys, and they became the Heismen Quartet.

There was a Wurlitzer Organ Plant in Corinth, Mississippi that custom built a "hot rod" organ for Frazier. A Wurlitzer worker painted the organ blue. The blue organ was a centerpiece of their performances and it was routinely transported on the quartetís bus to their singing engagements.

The Heismen members had regular jobs, but they sang every weekend, frequently with major groups. They often traveled with the Happy Goodmans and sang across America. In the late 1970s they appeared on the nationally syndicated Gospel Singing Jubilee television program.

They operated throughout the 1970s and recorded a number of LPs. During most of their existence, the Heismen Quartet consisted of Dexter Benjamin, tenor; Norman Benjamin, lead; Dean Lawrence, baritone; Bill Gant, bass; and Leon Frazier, organist. Former Kingsmen tenor Johnny Parrack filled in for Benjamin in late 1977 and joined the Heismen full-time in late December of that same year. Dallas Gilliland, who would become Gold City Quartetís first (albeit brief) bass singer, also sang with the Heismen in the late 1970s.

After the group retired, some members continued to sing locally on a limited basis including annual homecoming concerts. They often sang as a trio with Dexter Benjamin, Dean Lawrence, Leon Frazier's daughter DuJuana, along with Leon at the keyboard.

Leon Frazier died in an accident in 1997. Around 2011, the four remaining original members again put themselves in the public arena by singing in the region for about two years before disbanding.

The Corinth Kiwanis Club sponsors an annual Leon Frazier Memorial Concert that helps in providing thousands of dollars for college scholarships each year. This concert draws some of the most prominent names in gospel music.


1970? Reunion in Heaven (Praise Records/PLPS-1001): Reunion In Heaven; Sweetest Song I Know; Sheltered In The Arms Of God; It Won't Be Long; The Next Step You Take; The Night Before Easter; Thank God I'm Free; So Many Reasons; I'm In A New World; Too Much To Gain. (Dexter Benjamin, Norman Benjamin, Dean Lawrence, Bill Gant, Leon Frazier).

???? Oh What A Happy Day (P/Praise Records]]/PLPS-1011): Oh What A Happy Day; What Heaven Means To Me; I Know; Break Our Hearts Lord; Jesus Is Coming Soon; The Eastern Gate; Build My Mansion; I'll Live In Glory; Guilty Of Love; Poor Rich Man (instrumental). (Dexter Benjamin, Norman Benjamin, Dean Lawrence, Bill Gant, Leon Frazier).

???? Easy Listen'in With The Heismen (Harvest Records/1008): Jesus Took Care Of It All; He'll Hold My Hand; Where We Ever Shall Be; I Have Found The Way; The Lighthouse; He Pilots My Ship; I Will Serve Thee; Rock Of Ages; Softly And Tenderly; The Day Of Liberation Is Nigh.

???? Any Way You Look At 'Em They're Great (Harvest Records/H-1014): A Glimpse Of Heaven; Redemption Draweth Nigh; It Won't Be Very Long; I'll Be In The Rapture; The Unseen Hand; I'll Soon Be Gone; For God So Loved; Not In A Million Years; I've Found A Better Way; Love Lifted Me. (Dexter Benjamin, Norman Benjamin, Dean Lawrence, Bill Gant, Leon Frazier).

???? That's Why I'm Thankful (Harvest Records/HAR-1024-LP): That's Why I'm Thankful; Going Home; Victory In Jesus; Hallelujah Square; At The Cross; My First Look; With Him Forever; What A Time Over There; I Believe In Jesus; The Dearest Friend. (Dexter Benjamin, Norman Benjamin, Dean Lawrence, Bill Gant, Leon Frazier).

1974 The Heismen In Concert (Harvest Records/1026): The Night Before Easter; Break Our Hearts Lord; Oh What A Happy Day; Reunion In Heaven; I'm In A New World; I'll Live In Glory; Joshua

1975 Their Best Yet (Harvest Records/HAR-1033): What A Beautiful Day; Sing The Glory Down; Ten Thousand Years; He Did It All For Me; Stepping In The Light; On The Way Home; Heís The Man; Love Lifted Me; When I Wake Up; I Found A City (Dexter Benjamin, Norman Benjamin, Dean Lawrence, Bill Gant, Leon Frazier).

???? The Next Time You See Me (Harvest Records/HAR-1036-LPS): The Next Time You See Me; Itís Shouting Time In Heaven; Some Day; Thereíll Never Be Another Man ike Jesus; Our Country Church; Come And Dine; At The Old Rugged Cross; On My Knees; Help Me; That Same Jesus; Sailing Toward Home (Dexter Benjamin, Norman Benjamin, Dean Lawrence, Bill Gant, Leon Frazier).

1977 Canít Hardly Wait (Harvest Records/HAR-1101): I Canít Hardly Wait; If I Know My Heart; Redemption Day; Learning To Lean; In The Palm Of His Hand; Iíll Need A New Body; Amazing Grace; One Of These Days; Gabriel Blow Your Trumpet; Gloryland March (Dexter Benjamin, Norman Benjamin, Dean Lawrence, Dallas Gilliland, Leon Frazier) (also released as Supreme RecordsóSS33021 in 1977).

1978 Hosanna! (Harvest Records/ECPH1887): Hosanna; I'm So Glad He Found Me; Jesus I Love You; Dwelling In Beulah Land; Let Me Feel Your Spirit; I'll Sail Away Home; Because He Lives; Drifting Too Far From The Shore; Christ Is Standing; There Is A River. (Johnny Parrack, Dean Lawrence, Dallas Gilliland, Leon Frasier, Norman Benjamin).

45 RPM Singles
1977 (Supreme Records/4517):Iíll Need A New Body;Canít Hardly Wait (Dexter Benjamin, Norman Benjamin, Dean Lawrence, Dallas Gilliland,Leon Frazier) (both songs written by Leon Frazier).
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