Well 2010 is coming to a close and this has certainly been a dynamic year for Gospel Music. This year we began to see the rise of independent artist as well as the return of some of the industry’s main heavy hitters. The new releases began to flow in like water from a stream, as not only Atlanta based artist produced great music, but music as a whole.
This was the year of growth and expansion in my opinion. There is a change and shift going on within the Gospel Music industry that’s very refreshing. We began to see the changing of the guards if you will. There are alot of new and fresh faces who are really doing a fantatsic job in their positions. Passionate, excited, and excellence are just a few words to describe some of the individuals making strides in radio, television, writing, and production.
The Use of Techonolgoy really increased as more Gospel artist because more Twitter and Ustream Savy. Those two mediums have become the best and easiest way for artist to connect with their fans and to keep up with them. It’s also prove to be one of the greatest networking tools for not just artist but for industry professionals as well.
Particularly for Atlanta I’m very excited about some of our artist that are based here that really took the game by storm. Atlanta’s own VaShawn Mitchell released his third album, “Triumphant”. The record debut at #2 on the Billboard Charts, the leading single, “Nobody Greater” went to the #1 on Gospel Radio, and the project is nominated for 2 Grammy’s. Darwin Hobbs returned with what I believe is one of the greatest Praise and Worship Projects in a long time, “Champion”. Champion is Hobbs first Live record, and defintely should not be his last. If you’ve never experienced Darwin live then definitely purchase this album. The vocals, production, and writing on this record is oustanding. Although I believe many are still sleeping on this project if you will, it has earned Hobbs a Stellar Nomination for Praise and Worship Project of the Year. DeWayne Woods, Mr. “Let Go, Let God”, also brought us the 2010 tune, “Living On The Top” and a great project, “My Life’s Lyric”. This was Woods second album and also his most personal album to date. Songs like “I Won’t Be Afraid” and the PJ Morton produced tune, “Lost” became instant favorites with listeners. We also being to see artist such as Kevin Lemons and Tasha Cobbs release projects indepently and really begin to get their names out there. In 2011 I’m expecting more Atlanta Gospel artist to really rise up and take their place. Longtime Altanta resident Pastor Deitirck Haddon who now is Pastoring in Detroit, took the big to screen for “Blessed and Cursed” along with Karen Clark Sheard, Kierra Sherard, and others. Thanks to the Monique Show which is being filed here in Atlanta, it gave Gospel Artist the platform to have their music displayed on a major scale. Pastor Shirley Ceaser, Vickie Winans, Kirk Franklin, Y’Anna Crawley, BeBe and Cece Winans, Tina Campbell of Mary Mary, and others came through Atlanta to come through the elvator doors of the Monique show to spread the Good news of the Gospel.
This year also came with it’s trying moments as we saw the transition of Gospel icons such as Bishop Walter Hawkins, Albertina Walker, Bishop Kenneth Moales and Pastor Malinda Prince Sapp (wife of Pastor Marvin Sapp). It was during this time we saw the industry come together and unite as a family. We rejoice in the fact that we know these wonderful people have ran the race and gained their heavenly homes.
All In All A Great Year! I’m exited about the first and second quarter of 2011. Get Ready for new music from Kirk Franklin, Mary Mary, Richard Smallwood, and many others. It seems that the Gospel generals are back to show the people how it’s done. Let’s Get Ready For Music Overload!