Tag Archives: shirley caesar

For Chicago’s Cynthia Eubanks, It’s All About the Ministry

By Bob Marovich With its infectious aisle-walking vigor, “Nobody Like the Lord” couldn’t be more Chicago if the CD cover had a photo of the Picasso on it. It’s the debut single by Cynthia Eubanks, a Chicago artist who has wanted to sing gospel music ever since she was a young girl, participating in regular family singalongs. “My Uncle Eugene and Aunt Wilma would start off singing doo wop songs from the 1950s and 1960s,” Eubanks told the Journal of Gospel Music, “then they would sing gospel songs and it would turn into a mini gospel concert. Being one of ...

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JGM Pick of the Week: June 22, 2015

“Something About That Name” Lorraine Stancil Anointed Sounds Records (2015) I’m rather stoked about the recent release of so many traditional-style gospel singles, including this one by Psalmist Lorraine Stancil-Lawson. Product of the Pentecostal church, Psalmist Stancil is known to kick off her shoes just like Shirley Caesar, and on “Something About that Name,” she shouts and squalls like Pastor Caesar in full throes of sanctified passion. Stancil’s call and response with the background vocalists/choir heightens the tension to the point where she emits a couple of dog whistle soprano notes. Also like Caesar, Lorraine Stancil-Lawson has entered the ministry. ...

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“Duchess of Gospel” LaVarnga Hubbard Has Better Coming

By Bob Marovich Gospel music has had its share of fathers and mothers, kings and queens, princes, crown princes, princesses, godfathers, thunderbolts, wonder boys, and boy wonders, but as far as I know, only one duchess: Lady LaVarnga Hubbard. When Hubbard opens her mouth to sing, she channels the best of gospel’s traditional church-raised no-nonsense female shouters. Born in Chicago, LaVarnga (pron. luh-VARN-juh) Hubbard was nine years old when she began singing for Christian Doctrine Baptist Church, under the pastorate of Rev. Herman Billingsley. She joined Chicago Mass Choir when it was still called James C. Chambers and the Ecclesiastes ...

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JGM Pick of the Week: May 5, 2015

“I Need U” Criss Righteous Rank 1 Entertainment Mention the name Criss “Righteous” Johnson to those in the know, and they will tell you he is a skillful accompanist who has worked with gospel quartets for decades.  He even served as the longtime guitarist for Pastor Shirley Caesar. With “I Need U,” Criss Righteous breaks with tradition by stepping up to the mike as a solo artist. Well, not a total break with tradition—the song bleeds quartet soul, even if the beat is contemporary. Soloist or not, Criss growls that he needs Jesus, because “I can’t make it all by ...

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Audrey Cher Steps Out in Her Destiny

By Bob Marovich When Audrey Cher was born, her parents wanted to make certain her name meant something in the entertainment industry. So they called her Audrey after Audrey Hepburn and Cher for, well…Cher. “I’m walking in my name,” gospel singer and recording artist Audrey Cher told JGM last week. Born in Mount Clemens, Michigan, a town that once drew Hollywood celebrities to its mineral bathhouses, Audrey moved to Detroit, where she attended Bishop G. M. Boone’s New Liberty Apostolic Faith Church. There, she sang in the choir and at thirteen, joined the praise team. It would be another four years ...

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Various Artists – Divine Voices: Pastors of Praise

Various Artists Divine Voices: Pastors of Praise Rendezvous Music (release date: January 27, 2015) www.mackavenue.com By Bob Marovich There are preachers who sing and singers who preach.  Divine Voices: Pastors of Praise includes some of both. This new various artists compilation comes from Mack Avenue Records, a label which features gospel jazz on its Rendezvous imprint and last year released two similar compilation discs: Gospel Praise Duets and Christmas Goes Gospel. Divine Voices reprises a dozen recent selections, mostly from individuals who began as singers and added ministry to their resumes later. Many of the contemporary biggies are present; the ...

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