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*On Sunday, January 10 at 8 p.m. ET/PT BET will air its’ 10th annual Celebration of Gospel.

     The BET 2009 Celebration of Gospel has outstanding performances by Yolanda Adams, Ledisi, and Donald Lawrence.

    The event was hosted again by Steve Harvey and the 24-piece orchestra was again led by musical director Ray Chew.

    Also performing at the Celebration of Gospel is Fantasia and her mother Diane Barrino Barber, BeBe and CeCe Winans, Fred Hammond, Kelly Price, and John Hamilton and his wife Tarsah Hamilton.

 

   If that is not enough to certify this BET event as a Gospel celebration it also offers performances by Donnie McClurkin, Pastor Shirley Caesar, Marvin Sapp, James Fortune & FIYA, Tye Tribbett & Greater Anointing, Dr. Bobby Jones, The Rance Allen Group, BET Sunday Best winner Y’Anna Crawley, and The City of Refuge P.S.A.L.M.S. Choir.

 

   Celebrities that came out in support who graciously stopped by the red carpet includes BET’s College Hill’s Dorian Renaud, actress Elise Neal, singer/dancer Judith Hill (Michael Jackson), Kelly Chapman, Papa San, Deleon Richards-Shiffield, and Bishop Noel Jones (Pastor of the City of Refuge Church).

 

   When I asked Bishop Jones to give some words of encouragement to those having a hard time because of the economy he said, “One of the things you have to remember is that it’s not what you have, but who you are. If you don’t lose yourself, you can recover.”

 

   Dr. Bobby Jones was asked by me what he listens to when he is in his car and he didn’t take sides, he said, “Everything I can get my hands on. I don’t make differences in what’s out there…you don’t make differences in God’s Word.”

 

   That reasoning is why I love all types of Gospel music, it’s His Word that is important, which is why I love Shirley Caesar because she sings all types of Gospel.

 

   The 2009 BET Celebration of Gospel is produced by Stephen Hill, president of music programming and specials/BET, Lynne Harris Taylor, vice president of specials/BET, and Geovanni Brewer, executive producer.

 

   For more information on the show please log onto http://www.BET.com/COG.

 

Karima Kibble breaks from sisters to release her debut solo CD, ‘Just Karima’

 

   “I didn’t set out to sing a certain sound,” Contemporary Gospel artist Karima Kibble said about her first solo project “Just Karima.” “I asked God to give me the sound. I listened to it and said that’s good!”

 

   Karima Kibble came into the Gospel music business as part of a group of sisters, Virtue. She recently formed her own label Life Music Recordings in partnership with N Season Records to release her debut solo project “Just Karima.” To me her singing style is reminiscent of a mixture of Christina Aguilera and Britney Spears.

 

   “I didn’t feel like I could do it…without my sisters, God said, ‘Step out.’ I didn’t think I could write and He said, ‘Be Obedient.'”

 

   The project offers 11 selections with the support of such producers as Styalz Fuego, Terrell King, Debra Killings, Sean “Santana” Cooper and Rodney East. The first single is “So Happy.”

 

   My favorite cuts on this New Orleans native’s CD include “Light” because of his Urban Hip-Hop feel;  “Forecast” has a Pop sound that makes you want to get up and dance in the Spirit; “Just to Know” because of its piano support and its lyrics – a beautiful testimony, and “Hold Me Back” which has an Alternative Pop vibe.

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