Tag Archives: grammy

RIP Pervis Staples, Co-Founder of the Staple Singers

From a press release: Pervis Staples, a co-founding member of the legendary gospel group, the Staple Singers, passed away suddenly on May 6, 2021 at his home in Dolton, Illinois, according to Adam Ayers, a member of Mavis Staples’ 525 Worldwide Music management team. He was 85 years old. Beginning in 1956 with “Uncloudy Day” on Chicago’s Vee-Jay Record label and stretching into the early 1980s, the Staple Singers were one of the most influential acts in gospel, soul, and social protest music. Their signature songs such as “Uncloudy Day,” “Why Am I Treated So Bad,” “Respect Yourself” and “I’ll ...

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“Residue” – Jason Nelson

“Residue” Jason Nelson Tyscot / Fair Trade (release date: March 5, 2021) By Robert M. Marovich Those who know Jason Nelson for his gospel balladry will be interested to hear his musical shift on “Residue.” Nelson’s first single in three years is more rhythmic in arrangement and vocals than his trademark songs “Shifting the Atmosphere” and “Forever.” His voice, meaty and muscular, seems more so when fronting a rhythm section in which his own bass guitar work is front and center. To describe in contemporary terms how God cleanses the soul completely and sets it free, Nelson pulls on dual ...

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JGM Pick of the Week: December 21, 2020

“Silent Night”HamiltonesFrom the Young Vintage CDA Hamiltone Christmas (release date: November 30, 2017)www.watchtheton3s.com By Robert M. Marovich Although labeled a soul and R&B group, the Hamiltones of North Carolina sound for all the world like a gospel quartet on “Silent Night.” From converting the song’s 6/8 time signature to 12/8 to the shouting vocals, gritty guitar work, adlibbing, and crackling vinyl intro, this is old school quartet, I don’t care what anybody says. Then again, the Grammy-nominated trio has been featured on albums by Anthony Hamilton, PJ Morton, Jonathan McReynolds, and Tori Kelly, so there’s that. Released in 2017, the ...

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RIP: Val Alexander (Gospel Keynotes)

By Robert M. Marovich Debra Robinson informed JGM yesterday that Val Alexander, longtime singer and guitarist for the Gospel Keynotes, passed away on Wednesday, December 16, 2020. Alexander can be heard on Gospel Keynotes recordings as early as 1970. Here is a brief bio on the Gospel Keynotes: From Tyler, Texas, Willie Neal Johnson – affectionately known as “Country Boy” – began his professional singing career when Rev. C. W. Jackson invited him to join a local group, the Five Ways of Joy Gospel Singers, while he was still a teenager. The Five Ways of Joy instilled in Johnson a ...

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Tasha Cobbs Leonard Named Billboard’s Top Gospel Artist Of The Decade

Singer Wraps Whirlwind Year With Holiday Programming Alongside Dolly Parton and Ne-Yo. Nashville, TN (December 11, 2020) – GRAMMY®-winning singer/songwriter Tasha Cobbs Leonard has been named Billboard’s Top Gospel Artist of the Decade. News of the top honor came late last week, as Billboard began announcing its year-end and decade-end charts. Cobbs Leonard was also named the Top Female Gospel Artist for the 3rd consecutive year. This year alone, Tasha Cobbs Leonard earned two additional RIAA® certifications—one Platinum certification for her hit single “Break Every Chain,” and a Gold certification (her third) for the #1 radio single “You Know My ...

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Mali Music – The Book of Mali

Mali Music The Book of Mali RCA Inspiration (release date: August 14, 2020) www.rcainspiration.com By Bob Marovich The Book of Mali is aptly titled. Mali Music’s fifth album, released in a partnership between his own imprint, K Approved Enterprises, and RCA Inspiration, is a study in self-awareness. Much of the album has a confessional quality, a series of private-made-public conversations between Mali and his Lord. For example, on “Let Go,” Mali dizzyingly delineates the temptations he has left behind. The hypnotic current single, “Mo Lo” (Like You),” is about getting closer to God by humbling one’s self in His presence. ...

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RIP: Troy Sneed, gospel singer, recording artist, and record company owner

By Bob Marovich The Journal of Gospel Music was saddened to learn from social media posts by Gayle Lecus and Kurt Carr that gospel’s Troy Sneed has passed away. Reports indicate his passing was from contracting COVID-19. Here is a quick bio on Sneed from the Malaco Music Group website: Troy Sneed and country music icon Roy Acuff shared similar back stories. Both grew up in the South. Both aspired to be professional athletes. For Sneed, it was football; for Acuff, it was baseball. The pro careers of both men were halted by injury or illness. Each turned to music ...

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JGM Pick of the Week: April 1, 2019

“Reach”DOEIndependent (release date: March 17, 2019)www.doejonesmusic.com By Bob Marovich “Reach,” the new single by GRAMMY-nominated gospel artist Dominique Jones (aka DOE), represents her finest work to date, amidst a string of quality songs. It’s simply and gently direct, a prayer rising from an anguished soul that builds in intensity and uplift as the song progresses. Doe’s vocals rise and fall like steady breathing.  The arrangement sounds ready-made for that poignant part of a drama when the protagonist discovers the answer, and musters the inner strength, to resolve the conflict. Praise & Worship music can tend towards the conventional, imitative, and ...

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Doug Williams Retires as President of Blackberry Records

Jackson, MS (March 15, 2019): After twenty-eight years of heading the label, Doug Williams is officially retiring from his role as President and CEO of Blackberry Records as of April 1, 2019. Williams was instrumental in signing such artists as Bishop Paul S. Morton, the Canton Spirituals, the Williams Brothers and many others. Williams says: “We’ve had an incredible 28 years and made some history along the way. However, God is leading me in other directions at this time in my life.” Doug Williams will continue his involvement in the music industry, sharing that “music is my first love, therefore, ...

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