Gospel Music

For William McDowell, “Sounds of Revival” Goes Beyond Worship

By Bob Marovich Not two weeks after its January 22 release, celebrated worship leader William McDowell’s fourth album, Sounds of Revival: Live (Delivery Room Music / eOne Music), entered Billboard Magazine’s Top Gospel Album charts.  It knocked Kirk Franklin’s Losing My Religion from the number one position. Recorded live in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, before an audience of 3,000 people, Sounds of Revival is McDowell’s third number one album. It is also the latest chapter of the Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter-worship leader’s journey, one that began in Cincinnati, Ohio, and soared when his 2009 “I Give Myself Away” garnered more than one million views on YouTube. ...

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“Jesus” – Rodriquez Linson & Ministry

“Jesus” Rodriquez Linson & Ministry Linson Enterprise & BigBoyMusicGroup www.cdbaby.com/Artist/RodriquezLinsonMinistry Detroit organist Rod Linson & Ministry’s single, “Jesus,” is an intense call-and-response invocation of the Lord’s name and goodness. With flourishes of thunderous harmony, the ensemble sings in a minor key but resolves the motives in a major key. Nominated for four 2016 Rhythm of Gospel Awards, the group released its debut album, Oh Lord, Hear My Cry (Psalms 141) in late 2014. Fellow Detroiter Dr. E. LaQuint Weaver contributes two lead solos on the album.

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JGM Music Hour: The Ten Best Songs of 2015…

          …according to the Journal of Gospel Music. Click on the image above to listen to an uninterrupted mixtape of the ten songs. Playlist: Oh! – Jonathan McReynolds (eOne Music/Tehillah Music Group) Only Jesus – Alexis Spight (eOne Music/Uncle G Records) He Delivered Me – Pastor Marlon Lock (self-released) Grace – Yael Hilton (self-released) Something About That Name – Lorraine Stancil (Anointed Sounds Records) He Touched Me – Dr. LouDella Evans-Reid and the Traditional Gospel Choir (self-released) All I Need is You – AsOne (360 MusicWorx) Pieces – Rachael Mann (C2 Records/Oak Tree Productions) Abide – ...

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Journal of Gospel Music’s Best of 2015

By Bob Marovich As is our custom for this time of year, the Journal of Gospel Music presents its “best of” lists in the category of CDs, songs, and historical releases. The recordings were not chosen as “best of” based on sales, chart status, promotion, voting, fan popularity, number of likes or retweets, committee decisions, throwing darts, reading tea leaves, arm twisting, or anything other than 1) JGM was serviced with the music for review and 2) JGM believes they best represented gospel music in 2015 in terms of overall music quality. Artists whose music does not appear here: please don’t despair.  These lists were ...

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JGM Pick of the Week: January 4, 2016

“Use What I Have” Dynamic Abraham Brothers From the album Family Reunion Available on iTunes In the spirit of Psalm 98, the Dynamic Abraham Brothers encourage praising God by making a joyful noise in all the Earth. If you have a harp, trumpet, or cornet, shouts the lead singer, go on ahead and use them. But if you don’t have those instruments, “use what you have.” To the strutting downbeat characteristic of gospel quartets in drive mode, the Abraham Brothers demonstrate how using one’s hands, legs, and even eyes to clap, dance, and witness in praise of God’s blessings are more than adequate ...

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“Overflow” – Bryan Andrew Wilson feat. Roderick Giles & Grace

“Overflow” Bryan Andrew Wilson Feat. Roderick Giles & Grace Bryan’s Songs Records (release date: January 2016) Bryan Andrew Wilson’s forthcoming single “Overflow” falls squarely within the current gospel appetite for brisk, mid-tempo P&W songs with easy to learn melodies and lyrics. As such, it seems ideal for praise team use. Wilson, along with Roderick Giles & Grace as background vocalists, and the musicians, build incrementally from zero to sixty in dynamics over the course of the four-plus minute selection. Giles, incidentally, formed the Southern Baptist Church (SBC) Chorale, which was a regional champ of Verizon’s “How Sweet the Sound” competition ...

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Jonathan Butler – Free

Jonathan Butler Free Mack Avenue Records (2015) www.jonathanbutler.com By Bob Marovich Growing up financially poor in Cape Town, South Africa, under the repressive rules of apartheid, Jonathan Butler would certainly be excused if his music expressed unforgiving hate. But what the award-winning musical polymath feels instead, according to his latest inspirational album, Free, is another four-letter word: love. To love is to be free, so whether voicing his love for God or God’s love for every person, as on the zesty “Never Find a Better Love,” where God invites his people to “just let me in,” Butler keeps agape front ...

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Alache’ – The Chronicles of the Mrs. (EP)

Alache’ The Chronicles of the Mrs. (EP) MADE, Inc. / Elevate Entertainment / Syntax Distribution Release date: November 27, 2015 www.alache.com By Bob Marovich The Nigerian-born Alache’ has learned to be a lot more comfortable about life in the five years that have passed since her last music project.  The petite singer-songwriter is now married, has two children, and is ready to jump back into the music business. She also wants to share her lessons with you on an EP of intimate personal reflection, titled The Chronicles of the Mrs. The feathery-voiced Alache’ traverses several stylistic platforms in the EP’s limited running time, ...

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JGM Pick of the Week: December 14, 2015

“God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen” Livre From A Classic Holiday…Presented by MBK Entertainment (2015) http://smarturl.it/AClassicHoliday No disrespect to the many fine gospel musicians out there, but it is surely nice to hear a cappella harmonies every once in a while. That’s what the gospel group Livre gives us in their rendering of the classic Christmas carol, “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen.”  The group’s Take 6-like blend sounds effortless but is harmonically complex. Still, less is more, and during a season when every retailer is yelling to be heard over the din of other retailers, and a steady dose of over-amplified musical cheer ...

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Hi-Lite Juniors – A New Beginning

Hi-Lite Juniors A New Beginning Dynasty Productions 2015 https://www.facebook.com/Hilitejuniors/ By Bob Marovich Back in the day, “Junior” quartets were the next generation of singers to come up under the tutelage of a more senior group. Thus, the Seven Star Juniors were the younger proteges of the Seven Stars quartet, and so on. So it is with the Hi-Lite Juniors of Paterson, New Jersey. The quartet was formed in the early 1970s by Milbert “Doc” McKenzie, uncle of the Juniors’ lead singer, Eric McKenzie. Working within the contemporary-traditional blend of Doc’s Gospel Hi-Lites, the Hi-Lite Juniors—now grown men—offer ten selections on ...

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