Live Programs

The World-Famous Barrett Sisters Wow At CIMMfest

Photo highlights from the screening of The Sweet Sisters of Zion: DeLois Barrett Campbell and the Barrett Sisters, produced and directed by Regina Rene. The screening and live performance occurred at the Chicago Independent Movies and Music Festival (CIMMfest) at Chicago’s Chop Shop/1st Ward Sunday, May 4, 2014.  The audience was so wowed by the documentary that they all but demanded someone reissue all out of print Barrett Sisters recordings and that the film be strongly considered for airing on PBS. Special thanks to the film’s touring team of Prof. L. Stanley Davis, Fran Allen-Leake, and Lynn Orman. Rodessa Barrett ...

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Chicago a cappella’s “Birth of Gospel” educates, entertains

“The Birth of Gospel” Chicago a cappella Saturday, April 12, 2014 Nichols Concert Hall, Evanston, Illinois By Bob Marovich for The Black Gospel Blog The historic Nichols Concert Hall in Evanston was packed to the rafters to hear Chicago a cappella perform “The Birth of Gospel” yesterday evening. The mostly Caucasian crowd didn’t need the ghost of Mahalia Jackson to teach them how to clap on the gospel beat.  They did just fine whenever the eight-member ensemble—four men and four women—delivered a hand-clapper selection in its two-hour program of songs ranging from spirituals and lining hymns to traditional and contemporary ...

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Chicago Choirs Rouse Audience at Allstate Gospel SuperFest

By Bob Marovich for The Black Gospel Blog Maybe I’m biased, too much of a choir geek, or maybe it was simply home court advantage, but for all the star power at yesterday’s Allstate Gospel SuperFest in Chicago, and there was much, the hometown choirs provided the evening’s most noteworthy performances. That’s not saying there weren’t many outstanding presentations during yesterday’s television taping of Allstate’s fifteenth annual Gospel SuperFest, held at Pastor James Meeks’ auditorium-sized House of Hope.  There were.  From Tye Tribbett, Desmond Pringle, and James Fortune & FIYA, to Micah Stampley, Michelle Williams, Vicki Farrie, Joshua’s Troop, JJ ...

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Rev. Maceo Woods 2013 Gospel Supreme is Supreme Indeed

By Bob Marovich for The Black Gospel Blog Where else but at Pastor Maceo Woods’ Gospel Supreme can you hear the Christian Tabernacle Concert Choir, the First Church of Deliverance Radio and Television Choir, the Wooten Choral Ensemble, Minister Tim White, the Carson Sisters, Pastor DeAndre Patterson, and on and on….and then conclude with a performance of “Jesus” by Lady Supreme Doris Sykes! Congratulations to Pastor Woods and his team for a spectacular gospel program last night at First Church of Deliverance (Bishop Otto T. Houston III, Pastor). Here’s thirty seconds of the Christian Tabernacle Concert Choir at the top of ...

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Clara – A Musical on the Life of Clara Ward

Clara Open Door Repertory Company Oak Park, Illinois www.opendoorrep.org By Bob Marovich for The Black Gospel Blog “I had to die in order to live.” So says the spirit of Clara Ward in the opening scene of Clara, a musical on the life of the gospel star, written and directed by Jeff Award-nominated McKinley Johnson (Train is Comin’, Georgia Tom).  The show held its World Premiere at the Open Door Repertory Company in Oak Park, Illinois this past week. Johnson’s musical views Clara Ward with a sympathetic eye but without avoiding the rougher details of her life.  The unflinching, stark ...

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Blogging from the Gospel Music Workshop of America: Thursday, August 18

My final day at GMWA was Thursday, though the convention would not conclude until Friday evening. The morning was spent receiving updates on new music projects from record label owners and promoters. Sandra Smith from Blackberry Records told us about Henry Green’s solo project to be released in January, and the Williams Brothers’ innovative inspirational jazz CD also on its way. Lisa Wheeler, Executive Vice President of ICEE Records, updated everyone on the continued success of Father Hayes and the Warrors’ remix of “Jesus Will Work it Out” on both urban and gospel radio outlets, and that selected members of ...

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