New Song: Angel (of Trin-i-tee 5:7) – ‘Still God’

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With fresh year comes fresh goals; and for Trin-i-tee 5:7′s  Angel Taylor “solo success” is one of hers. Angel is stepping out alone for a solo-project — the first single of which received its online premiere this week.

Titled ‘Still God’, the pulsating track sees Miss Taylor remind that Gospel needn’t be tedious nor tiresome.

Hit ‘play’ and tuck into the latest from Angel below!

New Song: Darnell Davis & The Remnant – ‘Moving Forward’

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Maestro Darnell Davis and his ensemble The Remnant are gearing up for the release of their forthcoming album “Moving Forward” via RCA Inspiration and as the set’s March 25th release date draws nearer, the lead single and title-track “Moving Forward” has surfaced.

The new song is bolstered by tight production and a respectable vocal performance from Davis and The Remnant!

Without further delay hit play and get into the latest from Darnell Davis & The Remnant below…

Album Review: Papa San – ‘One Blood’

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Artist: Papa San

Album: One Blood

Street Date: 1/21/14

Record Label: Beloved Records

Genre: Urban/Hip Hop/ Reggae

iPod Pick: Your Eyes Are On Me Feat. Fred Hammond

If you have never heard anything from Papa San before, I am sorry to let you know you missed the best parts of dance-hall music in the late 90’s. No (church) party was successful without his hit ‘Pop Style’ (from the God & I project). Though appearing last year on Lecrae’s ‘Church Clothes 2′, Papa San has not really been prominent on the scene for a while even though releasing various projects since the 2000. So once, I heard about ‘One Blood’ I was excited to give it a listen after learning the variety of artists featured on the project. The cast ranges from Fred HammondLecraeDa’ T.R.U.T.H. to Israel Houghton.

The album for me wasn’t a press play album. Some songs really stood out. The tum tum beat of the Fred Hammond featured Your Eyes Are On Me reminds us of why anyone should love the genre called Reggae.  Somehow, I don’t know how the soul and passion slipped into the music. If it was Fred Hammond or Papa San, they both did justice to their vocals. So good!

Another track that really worked on the album is the opening tracked which features Da’ T.R.U.T.H. called Step Up. It’s energetic, beaty and right for the dance floor. Think ‘Temperature’ by Sean Paul. Somehow the Lecrae featured track (Radio) didn’t just do it for me after looking forward to it. I also think I Love You Feat. Tyrone Andrews, which seems like a fish out water on the album, is worth the mention. It sounds somewhat very experimental in sound using lots of ambiance and mood music. You might just think the CD skipped to a track on which Drake collaborated with Frank Ocean.

Other highlights include Revival feat. Israel Houghton and Blessing feat. Sherwin Gardner. The later has flair of the West African Fuji sound right in its chorus. I love the groove!

For lovers of the raunchy music of Pit Bull, the out of boundaries sound of Jennifer Lopez’s ‘I’m Into You’ and those who have missed the dance hall sound of Sean Paul (Yeah, if you remember ‘Baby Boy’ with the now Queen B) this is surely one you should check out. I believe the not-so-wow tracks are one that would grow on you over time. It is also important to mention that if you love to dance, you would have a LOT to move to on this record.

So One Blood

And Peace out!

Album Review: Marvin Sapp – ‘Christmas Card’

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Artist: Marvin Sapp

Album: Christmas Card

Street Date: 10/22/13

Record Label: RCA Inspiration 

Genre: Urban/R&B

iPod Pick: Home For Christmas (Feat. Joe)

Christmas albums tend to fall into a particular genre no matter what genre the artist grooves in before making the album. In fact Christmas album from very alternative artists like She and Him get to make it into the mainstream market for Christmas. What I love about Marvin Sapp’s ‘Christmas Card’ is that strong R&B flavor. It’s first R&B and urban before it’s a Christmas record and I totally love that.

In fact, It feels like Marvin gets to spread his full R&B wings on this record deviating more from the very hardcore gospel sound we are accustomed to. Songs like ‘Feel Real Good’Christmas CardDance (Christmas Step) would do good for a nice Christmas house party. Though cheesy lyrics such as ‘dance, Christmas might just be your only chance’ appear on the later. You will experience creative songwriting and storytelling on the title track as Marvin sings ‘Times are hard, all I can get you is a Christmas card.

‘Home for Christmas’ with veteran R&B and love songsmith Joe is priceless! It’s got this amazing RnB tune plus vocal that would almost make you keep the song on your playlist for 2014 way beyond Christmas. On ‘Don’t Get It Twisted’Marvin reminds us that there is no Christmas without Christ.

I must say I find it inspiring and uplifting to have Marvin release such a refreshing, upbeat and happy record just a few years after the passing away of his wife Pastor Malinda Sapp.

Though identifiable takes on classic carols (God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen, What Child Is This?) make their way onto this record, this is a ‘breathe of fresh air’ Christmas record we will be loving for many more years to come. Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays.

Download ‘Christmas Card’ here!

Listen: The Walls Group’s Darrel Walls Covers Mali Music’s ‘Ready Aim’

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Darrel Walls has developed quite the knack of taking original songs and reworking them with impressive results. From Tye Tribbett‘s ‘Better‘ to Israel & New Breed’s ‘Alpha & Omega’, very few songs can say they haven’t received the Walls treatment, and yesterday- Mali Music’‘Ready Aim‘ joined that list.

Unveiling the impressive cover via his personal SoundCloud page, hit ‘play’ and tuck into Darrel’s take on ‘Ready Aim‘ below…

Introducing… Isaiah Templeton / Listen To Debut Single!

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Say hello to Isaiah Templeton, one of Gospel music’s fresh and talented new artist.

Hailing from Ohio, the singer-songwriter is ready to impact the world with God’s message of life-changing hope and peace through his music.

Isaiah has been generating quite the buzz in Ohio and surrounding areas, and is now hoping to sting all across the United States with his music. In addition, you might have seen Mr. Templeton on stage providing background vocals for artists such as Marvin Sapp and Smokie Norful!

But now the burgeoning vocalist is ready to make his own mark in Gospel music with his debut EP, “I Can Do Anything“, in which is scheduled to be released on 1-4-14. Press ‘play’ and get familiar with Isaiah Templeton below…

Album Review: Jonathan Butler – ‘Merry Christmas To You’

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Artist: Jonathan Butler

Album: Merry Christmas To You

Street Date: 9-30-13

Record Label: Mack Avenue Records

Genre: Jazz

iPod Pick- Sleigh Ride

Jonathan Butler who is known more as a musician/instrumentalist than a vocalist has released a gem in form of a holiday album titled Merry Christmas to You. I love it in that the song selection on this one isn’t what we are usually used to though some anthems appear on here too (Have Yourself a Merry Little ChristmasThe First Noel, O Holy Night). They are all performed with a lot of twist and jazz (what would you expect from a Christmas album from a world renowned jazzist). In fact Jonathan Butler gives us a taste of his South African roots on his version of Little Drummer Boy. Please don’t play it while you’re in the kitchen. You might forget the Turkey in the oven while you dance away.

In fact songs like Sleigh Ride are purely instrumentals and nicely done that you might want to leave it playing in your loft all throughout the season. I think it’s also important to mention that this Christmas project isn’t’t a purely vertical one (just Christmas songs to God). It leans more on love themes, celebrating with loved ones and family (This ChristmasMerry Christmas to You, Happy Holidays).

On Jonathan Butler’s Merry Christmas to You project, the vocals are top notched, in fact you hear Mr. Butler hitting unbelievable pitches and voice ranges. The instrumentation is a high point especially if you are a lover of classical music and jazz. The song selection is eclectic. If you are a fan of serenaders such as Boney JamesTommy Stewart, and Josh Groban, tired of the same old, looking for something not too edgy but rich in instruments this is definitely for you.

Download ‘Merry Christmas To You’ here!

New Song: Duranice Pace (From The Pace Sisters) – ‘He’s The Master’ {First Solo Single}

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Still going strong with her sisters as part of The Anointed Pace Sisters, Duranice Pace is stepping out alone for a solo side-project — the first single of which receives its first online premiere on The Gospel Guru.

Titled ‘He’s The Master’, the funky cut sees Duranice Pace once again remind why she remains one of Gospel music’s most celebrated vocalist. The flavorful track fuses the best aspects of the genre with a somewhat contemporary kick.

He’s The Master’ is lifted from the singer’s highly anticipated solo EP  ‘Just Duranice’, which is slated to hit digital outlets on 12/3.

Without further delay, hit ‘play’ and get familiar with Duranice Pace’s new single below:

Album Review: Dee-1 – ‘Psalms Of David 2′ (Mixtape)

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Artist: Dee-1

Album: Psalms Of David 2

Street Date: 11-19-13

Record Label: N/A

Genre: Hip-Hop/ Rap

iPod Pick: Found tha One (ft Kourtney Heart)

Rick Warren, Pastor of Saddleback church recently said Psalms has the truth we need for healthy emotions and Proverbs has the truth we need for healthy relationships. I couldn’t stop remembering how apt this quote was as I listened to Dee- 1’s new mixtape titled Psalms of David 2.

Though mixtapes have earned a reputation (especially in the rap genre) of fast made, undone music mashed up with terrible production., mixtape releases like Kendrick Lamar’s Overly Dedicated, Drake’s So Far Gone, Lecrae’s Church Clothes and Big Sean’s Finally Famous have done a good job of redeeming this reputation. Dee- 1’s Psalms of David falls in the line of one these “redemptive” releases. As one who had great doubts when the record arrived to give it a try, I must say I wasn’t disappointed after I got to listen.

Pouring out non-clichéd words and emotions in the style of the veteran David of the bible, Dee raps on the opening track [Psalms of David II intro (ft Alainia)] My birthday in 9 days I’m analyzing my life. I’ve got a couple of bad habits I’m still trying to get right.

Most times, Psalms of David II reads like peek into a diary. From very intimate love songs [Found tha One (ft Kourtney Heart)] to struggles encountered in the creative process to seeking acceptance and appreciation of one’s art [Really Feel This. It's All Good (ft Rantz Davis). ] . Musically it’s chill back rap with low beat groovy refrains. Dee raps of victories, struggles and in-betweens using words skillfully with poetic prowess. A track I really enjoyed and worth mentioning is Zero to a Kilo.

As he says on Really Feel This Sometimes you do something different you be doubting yourself. You be like mhen I think that people not gonna feel this. Dee- 1 has offered something different on this one and I must say I really felt this.

Overlooking not so correlating references to strip clubs [I'll Pay For It], and bracing yourself for surprises such as appearances by Macklemore, Dee- 1’s Psalms of David is a blissful tune ride you don’t want to miss.  Just a little more work on the album cover art next time.

Download ‘Psalms Of David 2′ here!

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