Tag Archives: detroit

“Some Day We’ll Meet” – Bill Moss Jr. & the B. M. & E. State Choir ft. Carolyn Jacobs

“Some Day We’ll Meet” Bill Moss Jr. & the B.M. & E. State Choir ft. Carolyn Jacobs From the Salathiel Records album His Majesty (album release: 2020) http://www.salathielrecords.com/ By Robert M. Marovich The B. M. & E. State Choir punctuates “Some Day We’ll Meet,” a gleeful evocation of the great meeting in the hereafter, with “hallelujahs” and “forever and evers” from the “Hallelujah Chorus” of Handel’s Messiah. Carolyn Jacobs sings with the passionate spirit of a quartet lead over the B. M. & E. Choir’s effusive harmonies on this up-tempo song written by Bill Moss Sr. in the 1970s. The ...

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Ellen Hayes – We Owe It All to You

Ellen Hayes We Owe It All to You Songs & Melodies Records, LLC (release date: February 6, 2022) www.meetellenhayes.com By Robert M. Marovich Any new album featuring A. Jeffrey LaValley is going to grab my attention. LaValley, the veteran gospel musician whose “Revelations 19:1” was famously sampled on Kanye West’s Jesus is King, wrote a couple of instrumentals and handles keys for some tracks on Ellen Hayes’s solo album, We Owe It All to You. Thanks to solid songwriting from Hayes, Michael Mindingall, and Sean Hardin, the album contains a greater number of individually distinctive and quality gospel songs than ...

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“Truth” – Charles Martin

“Truth” Charles Martin Chuck’s Room (release date: September 2020) By Robert M. Marovich A singer, songwriter, actor, and former member of Deitrick Haddon’s Stellar Award-winning group Voices of Unity, Charles Martin flexes his melodious tenor voice on “Truth,” an atmospheric ballad he co-wrote with Rachard “Chardyroc” Williams. The song is partly a prayer seeking wisdom and guidance, and partly a prayer of gratitude for the freedom of salvation. It’s inspired by Martin’s own struggles as well as those of the nation. The freedom theme can be heard not only in Martin’s unfettered vocals during the vamp, but also in the ...

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The Rosa Parks Family Foundation Endorses Dewayne Harvey’s Gospel Hit, “What The Lord Allows”

(DETROIT, MI, Nov. 30, 2021) On December 1, 1955, Rosa Parks stood up for civil rights and against segregation when she refused to give up her seat and move to the back of a city bus in Montgomery, Alabama. This bold move from Ms. Parks helped spark the Civil Rights Movement, inspiring leaders such as the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr to take action towards helping our nation become a better society. To commemorate that historic event, this year the Rosa Parks Family Foundation, headed by Rhea McCauley – the niece of the departed Ms. Parks – announces the ...

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“Tell Me Where” – Darius Twyman & Destiny

“Tell Me Where” Darius Twyman & Destiny My-Zeal Productions/ Character Music Group LLC (release date: September 3, 2021) By Robert M. Marovich The Detroit choir Darius Twyman & Destiny telegraphs the meaning of its new single, “Tell Me Where,” when Twyman states up front that it is an old school church song written for his mother. The ensemble then tweaks the premise of “Tell Me Where Will I Be When that Trumpet Sounds” into “Where will I be when the Lord comes for me?” This song presents itself as a personal question but is really a warning to all listeners ...

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“I Will Call Upon the Lord” – Dr. E. LaQuint Weaver II & the Hallelujah Singers

“I Will Call Upon the Lord” Dr. E. LaQuint Weaver II & the Hallelujah Singers (release date: September 1, 2021) By Robert M. Marovich Whenever I hear “I Will Call Upon the Lord,” the latest single from Detroit choir Dr. E. LaQuint Weaver & the Hallelujah Singers, I am reminded of the city’s iconic Joe Louis Fist sculpture. The song exemplifies in lyric and arrangement the majestic might of that fist. The song’s testimony to resilience “during these perilous times” and the choir’s steadfast faith in the Lord in the midst of their enemies are manifested in thunderous staccato singing ...

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“It Won’t Be Long” – Dr. Waverly B. Bumbrey & Refuge Temple Cathedral Voices

“It Won’t Be Long” Dr. Waverly B. Bumbrey & Refuge Temple Cathedral Voices (release date: January 8, 2021) By Robert M. Marovich Pandemic-wise, “It Won’t Be Long” feels more relevant today, in mid-March, than when it was released in early January by the award-winning choir Dr. Waverly B. Bumbrey & Refuge Temple Cathedral Voices. But “better days are coming,” the choir sings, and in the meantime they will shout and pray about it. Featured soloist Erica Lancaster improvises breathlessly on the theme as the Voices repeat the mantra, “It Won’t Be Long.” In his raw and craggy voice, Dr. Bumbrey ...

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Bishop J. Drew Sheard Turns Pandemic Heartbreak into Community Healing

By Robert M. Marovich Last March, the COVID-19 pandemic washed over Bishop J. Drew Sheard’s family and associates like a tsunami. His brother, the Reverend Ethan B. Sheard, tested positive for the virus. So did his children, well-known musicians J Drew II and Kierra. His mother, Willie Mae Sheard, and father, Bishop John H. Sheard, pastor of Greater Mitchell Temple Church of God in Christ in Detroit, also contracted the virus. “It hit my family pretty hard,” Sheard, Senior Pastor of Detroit’s Greater Emmanuel Institutional (GEI) Church of God in Christ, told the Journal of Gospel Music. “The most difficult ...

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RIP: Ora Watkins-Jones (Southwest Michigan State Choir of COGIC)

By Robert M. Marovich Marcel West of Detroit informed JGM of the passing of Mother Ora Watkins-Jones, stalwart lead vocalist for the Southwest Michigan State Choir of the Church of God in Christ, under the direction of Dr. Mattie Moss Clark. Of a choir with more than 100 members, a few names stood out from the pack. Rose Marie Rimson-Brown. LaBarbara Whitehead. Vanessa Bell Armstrong. The Clark Sisters. Donald Vails. And Ora Watkins-Jones. Mother Watkins-Jones is perhaps best known for her vocal contribution, with Rimson-Brown (who passed away earlier this year), on the Southwest Michigan State Choir’s first radio hit, ...

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Young Men 4 Christ – Elevation (EP)

Young Men 4 Christ Elevation (EP) Independent (release date: September 11, 2020) www.youngmen4christ.com By Bob Marovich Formed in 2012, Young Men 4 Christ is a contemporary male quartet from Detroit that offers the churchy turns and pulpit-honed declarations for which their hometown is famous. On the six-track EP Elevation, the nine-man group (five singers and four musicians) shifts between traditional and modern gospel quartet styles. For example, “He’s Able” and an extended version of the group’s single “Testimony” are buoyant aisle-walkers, and “Everything to God in Prayer” is a faithful reading of “What a Friend We Have in Jesus” with ...

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