One of the nice things about Christmas is that even people who don’t normally listen to gospel music, embrace “Christmas Music,” which is really just gospel music focused on the good news of Christ’s birth.
Over the years, many Detroit gospel artists have released some wonderful Christmas albums, so DetroitGospel.com would like to highlight a few that you may want to pick up.
“The Clark Sisters’ Family Christmas” was released in 2009, on First Lady Karen Clark Sheard and Bishop J. Drew Sheard’s label, KaRew Records. This beautiful album brings the Clark-Moss family together, as it also features J Moss, Kierra Sheard, Bill Moss, Jr., and J. Drew Sheard II. Click on the video below to hear The Clark Sisters’ AMAZING rendition of “O Come Emmanuel.”
Vickie Winans’ 2007 Christmas Album, “Happpy Holidays from Vickie Winans” is also a family affair, with Vickie’s son Marvin Winans, Jr. and nephew, Tim Bowman II lending their talents to the project.
Although a little difficult to find now, Detroit’s first family of gospel, The Winans, released an album in 2000, entitled, “Christmas: Our Gifts to You.” The album includes songs from Marvin, CeCe, Angie, Ronald and Mom & Pop Winans, along with guest artists Darwin Hobbs, Kirk & Kevin Whalum and more. However, the Christmas song that The Winans are best known for, “The Real Meaning of Christmas,” was surprisingly not released on a Christmas album. It was released in 1987, on “Decisions,” the same album that contained the smash hit, “Ain’t No Need to Worry,” with Anita Baker.
BeBe and CeCe Winans released a Christmas album together in 1993, and each has individually released their own Christmas albums. BeBe’s 2003, “My Christmas Prayer,” released on the album of the same name, has become a Christmas classic.
Fred Hammond’s Christmas Album, “Christmas…Just Remember,” is one of DetroitGospel.com editor, Mary Crosby’s, favorites, and was released in 2001, on Verity Records. In 2008, Fred tried his hand at acting and released a DVD entitled, “Christmas…Who Needs It?,” in which Fred plays a modern day Scrooge.
Also released in 2008, Aretha Franklin’s “This Christmas,” is a must-have for fans of the reigning Queen of Soul.
One of the musical treats of Christmas music is that we get to hear “gospel” music from great artists who don’t typically sing gospel music. Stevie Wonder’s “Ave Maria,” Luther Vandross’ “Oh Come All Ye Faithful,” Michael Jackson’s “Little Drummer Boy,” and The Temptations’ “Silent Night,” are a chance to hear some of the all time legends of music sing about our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ…which, as The Winans would say, is “the real meaning of Christmas.”
To purchase any of the Christmas CDs mentioned here as well as other Gospel Entertainment-related Christmas gifts, visit www.DetroitGospelChristmas.com…for Gifts that keep The “CHRIST” in Christmas (orders processed through Amazon.com).
For more information on Detroit’s gospel music scene, be sure to listen to DetroitGospel.com every fourth Sunday at 9:20AM on FM98 WJLB’s “Strong Inspirations with Deborah Smith Pollard.”