Tag Archives: Texas

Celebrating the Life of Gospel Legend Shawn McLemore

For Immediate Release (Houston, Texas) The music community is mourning the loss of a Gospel music legend with the passing of Shawn McLemore after an extended illness. “Shawn was a great spirit with enormous talent and personality to match”, says Blacksmoke Music Worldwide CEO Kerry Douglas. “To see him take the stage and have absolute command of the room was just magic. He was genuine, he had a great sense of humor and when he sang, God listened. Shawn was a gift to us and he will surely be missed.” Life began for Shawn McLemore in Los Angeles, California, where ...

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Gregory Gay Joins Blacksmoke Music Worldwide Team

(Houston, Texas) Blacksmoke Music Worldwide and Kerry Douglas Radio Promotions expands its bandwidth with the addition of Gregory Gay to its ranks. “Gregory Gay has been a fixture in the inner workings and behind the scenes of Gospel music for over two decades”, says Blacksmoke CEO Kerry Douglas. He has been a much loved minister of music and choir trainer/vocal coach (he can sing a little bit too) , a radio personality, a music editor, contributor to several books on Gospel and a management, marketing and publicity strategist. He knows the history of this great music and celebrates its continued ...

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“All I Am” – Taushey Sias

“All I Am” Taushey Sias (release date: June 24, 2019) http://booktaushey.com/ Besides being a song of praise written in the wake of a devastating fire that left singer Taushey Sias temporarily homeless, “All I Am” has a delicate and fascinating melody made all the more richer by Sias’ elastic but not overly showy vocals. A downbeat mood complements the intimacy of the prayer-like lyrics. One gets the impression that this young lady could sing just about any kind of music. In fact, the last time JGM featured her was on its 2014 Christmas playlist, singing “Merry Christmas” with Norris J. ...

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DeWayne Harvey Knows Firsthand “What the Lord Allows”

By Robert M. Marovich “He may not come when you want Him, but He’s always right on time.” This church aphorism could be Pastor DeWayne Harvey’s personal motto. The early 2010s were a busy time for the Tallahassee, Florida, minister, entrepreneur, singer, songwriter, and producer. His 2011 release, The Report of the Lord, featuring the praise team from his Greater Blessings Tabernacle of Faith Church, was doing well. The album’s singles, “Whose Report” and “Celebrate,” were burning up gospel radio. Harvey also wrote and produced Angela Spivey’s 2012 album, He Keeps His Promise, for his Innovative Records imprint. So by ...

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Katy Crawford – Dwell (EP)

Katy Crawford Dwell (EP) Devotion Music (release date: June 11, 2020) By Robert M. Marovich Dallas-based singer-songwriter Katy Crawford was inspired to read from Psalms every day and set some of the verses to music. Her EP Dwell is the first, but hopefully not the last, of her musical explorations of the ancient lyrical poems. Crawford gives the EP’s six psalms a dash of folk, country, and Celtic lilt. Their memorable melodies are supported by a delicate acoustic ambience, one that never overpowers Crawford’s earnest vocals, which are reminiscent of Sandra McCracken and Lauren Daigle. Although the rhythmic and engaging ...

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RIP: Pastor Steve Hawkins

By Robert M. Marovich A. Jeffrey LaValley informed JGM of the passing of his friend, gospel singer and pastor Steve Hawkins. Born in Waco, Texas, on Valentine’s Day, 1953 (“That’s why I’m such a sweetheart!” he chuckled during our 2014 interview), Hawkins was raised in Cleveland, Ohio, where his father was pastor of the Jerusalem Church of God in Christ. As a youngster, Hawkins learned the finer points of singing from his mother. His uncle and aunt, Dorothy and Lawrence Abrams, took him on the road to open for the Original Five Blind Boys, in which Lawrence was a member ...

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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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Leading Gospel Music Executive Kerry Douglas Shares His COVID Story

(Houston, Texas) Blacksmoke Music Worldwide Founder and CEO Mr. Kerry Douglas counts the joys of life a little sweeter as he recovers from an extensive bout with COVID-19. The venerable record company executive, award winning hit making radio promoter and most recent proud father was conducting “Gospel Music business as usual” when COVID-19 stopped him in his tracks placing an indefinite hold on his daily activities. “I knew something was wrong, I just couldn’t put my finger on it. I was fatigued and tired and then the flu like symptoms set in. We don’t know why things happen, but we ...

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Chosen Vessel – Marvin Sapp

Marvin Sapp Chosen Vessel RCA Inspiration / Verity (release date: October 9, 2020) www.rcainspiration.com By Bob Marovich Every successive Marvin Sapp solo album release after 2007’s Gold-certified Thirsty, with its blockbuster hit, “Never Would Have Made It,” has assumed something of Major Event status. Here I Am (2010), with its hit “The Best In Me;” I Win (2012); You Shall Live (2015); and Close (2017) received widespread attention and each ultimately hit number one. So no pressure on Chosen Vessel, Sapp’s twelfth solo release, dropped last Friday. Produced by Aaron Lindsey and Myron Butler, Chosen Vessel was recorded at Sapp’s ...

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JGM Pick of the Week: August 11, 2020

“Trust and Believe”Mona MooreIndependent (release date: July 2, 2020)Available on iTunes By Bob Marovich Mona Moore’s affecting treatment of the dramatic “Trust and Believe” is what sells the single. From Houston, Texas, Moore reminds the listener that God is a “miracle worker,” so don’t fret: “God will do what he said He will do.” The lyric inspiration comes in part from Psalm 46:10 (“Be still and know that I am God”). Like a veteran vocalist, Moore begins softly, almost whispery, then moves incrementally into shouting evangelist mode as the mood of the song alters. “Trust and Believe” continues building to ...

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