gospel round up

Festival of Praise Tour Bus Destroyed by Fire

In the wee hours of the morning on May 1st gospel legend Fred Hammond and twenty members of his tour group were evacuated from the bus they were traveling on when it ignited in fire. It was shortly after 1:00 a.m. when a loud pop was heard said Hammond in a video, that they were alerted by the driver who began yelling “get off, get off, get off” and that is when they realized an emergency had occurred. Upon evacuating, they retrieved as many possessions as they could before the entire back of the bus where Hammond’s room and others were located became a wall of flames. The video footage showed the rear of the bus, engulfed in flames while members of the band, some carrying instruments watched from alongside the road. The tour bus owned by Hammond since 1999, was en route from Fayetteville, NC to Fort Lauderdale, FL, the last stop for the tour when the incident occurred. After the group evacuated the bus, Hammond credited local police for their hospitality after they escorted the entire group to a nearby Love’s truck stop where they had an opportunity to regroup and figure out how to proceed to the next destination. Thankfully no one was injured.

Mary Mary to Be Honored in Atlanta During 7th Annual Black Music Honors

The 7th Annual Black Music Honors ceremony, scheduled for live taping at the Cobb Energy Performing Center in Atlanta, GA will once again honor artists and musicians for their contributions to American music. The two-hour star-studded event which will be held on Thursday, May 19, 2022, and will honor artists such as Dru Hill, Tevin Campbell, Karyn White, songwriter Keri Hilsonand legendary R&B group The Whispers for their nearly six-decades in the industry. Also, among the honorees will be the sister gospel duo Erica and Tina Campbell, known as Mary Marywho will receive the Gospel Icon Award for their contributions to gospel music since their launch in 1998. Together they have sold more than eight million records and have been nominated for eleven Grammy Awards of which they have won four. The show will be co-hosted by LeToya Luckettand Deray Davisand will begin airing nationally and in syndication on Bounce TV in June.

Yolanda Adams Stars in Original Series “Kingdom Business”

Kingdom Business, the original series executive-produced by gospel icon Kirk Franklin is schedule to begin airing the first of its eight episodes on BET+ Thursday, May 19th. The plot follows Denita Jordan, played by gospel legend Yolanda Adams whose character is dubbed the reigning “queen of gospel music” at the fictitious First Kingdom Church and Kingdom Records of Atlanta. To secure her superstar status, Denita is determined to everything and anything she can to guard her family secrets at all costs, that is until Rbel an exotic dancer played by Serayah, an alum from “Empire” the FOX drama series threatens everything she has strived for.

Gospel Legends Kurt Carr and Kathy Taylor Perform for First Ladies

L.A. Focus will be hosting its 24th Annual First Ladies High Tea, honoring the first ladies of the Liberty Baptist Church, Judson Baptist Church, the Center of Hope L.A., Blessed Family Covenant, and the Christ Second Baptist Church. The event scheduled for Saturday, May 7th will take place at The Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, CA. This year’s theme is “Together We Rise, A New Season of God’s Church” This year’s First Ladies include Karen Brown, Adrienne Dixon, Wendy Howlett and Teresa Pleasant. Musical performance will include gospel legends Kathy Taylor and Kurt Carr who will be making his first west coast appearance in five years.

Landmark Church on Upper West Side Faces Wrecking Ball

The West-Park Presbyterian Church located in New York’s prestigious Upper West Side has once again become the focal point of an ongoing debate concerning preservation and landmarking. The 140-year-old, Romanesque-Revival structure sits amidst high-rise homes and office spaces at Amsterdam Avenue and West 86th Street and has been seeking a hardship ruling from Landmarks Preservation Commission from its congregation so that it could sell the property to a real estate developer for $33 million to help escape the hefty restoration bill they have incurred. The church, where only a tiny congregation still attends needs an estimated $50 million dollars’ worth of work to keep it from collapsing. It has been surrounded by scaffolding for the past 20 years and has been slapped by more than 60 violations. The church labeled an official city landmark 10 years ago while it was already deteriorated remains largely abandoned by the twelve remaining congregants who have been meeting via Zoom since the pandemic.