Sounds of Blackness
Grammy-winning music group
Though they have won 3 Grammys for their Gospel music, it’s not accurate to call Sounds of Blackness a gospel group. What Sounds of Blackness does is sing music that represents – as their website states – “sounds of blackness: Jazz, Blues, Rock and Roll, Rhythm and Blues, Gospel, Reggae, Ragtime, Spirtuals, Work songs and Field Hollers.”
Their R&B work has earned them gold records, positions on the R&B charts and a Soul Train Award. Their songs have been featured in numerous soundtracks and they sang at the White House 5 times for President Clinton. Not to be overlooked, President Obama called Gary Hines (musical director of Sounds of Blackness) to let him know he and Michelle are big fans. Another big fan is Janet Jackson, who helped launch them into their first big record deal back in 1989 with Terry Lewis and Jimmy Jam (who’ve produced everyone from Prince to Sting, Mariah to Janet.) And despite all this success, Gary comes across as humble and just honored to be able to deliver music to the world.
Sounds of Blackness has accomplished so many things, including using their music to heal. Sound of Blackness’ commitment to social causes includes a partnership with domestic violence agencies. Their song “She is Love” has been used in domestic violence training and presentations nationally and, as Gary says, the song is as much a tribute to mothers and women as it is a statement against domestic violence.
Maybe you were one of the billion who saw Sounds of Blackness perform at the 1996 Summer Olympics or have seen them on tour around the country or heard one of their former members sing to you as an “American Idol” contestant (see the q&a for more on this), but if not, welcome them into your listening repertoire. If you’re in New York, the group will do a free Martin Luther King Day concert at Brooklyn College. If you can’t make that, their latest album, The 3rd Gift, will give your day a boost.
Their music is sung from the heart, their voices mesh together in gorgeous harmony — it’s pure melodic peace in your busy day. Sounds of Blackness’ inspiring music and message of unity is a perfect way to start 2010.
Watch a video for 'She is Love' performed by Sounds of Blackness HERE
Official Website: http://www.yoshis.com/sanfrancisco/jazzclub/artist/show/1226
Added by Yoshis on March 9, 2010