Sunday, February 15, 2015

Mississippi Mass Choir Praising God

                   Mississippi Mass Choir Praising God Playlist

Frank Williams, founder of the group, began singing gospel music in churches as a child, spending his evenings immersed in the sounds and ways of the gospel under the guiding hand of his father, Leon. Frank performed with his brothers in an act know as The Williams Brothers, later joining the Jackson Southernaires.

 After many years of touring as an artist, Frank had a vision that the great and soulful voices of Mississippi needed to be captured in choir. For nine years this idea grew in his mind until he could contain it no longer. He approached his gospel-writing friend, David Curry, with his ambitions and the rest is history! The two sent audition announcements via radio across the state of Mississippi and tapes began pouring in. With great enthusiasm, the people of Mississippi thrust themselves into the mission of this choir, to serve God through song. Redefining the choir experience, each concert is like a rousing church service, with a Reverend at the helm. Skillfully weaving a scriptural message into the soul-stirring, roof-raising gospel sounds of the singers, Reverend Benjamin Cone, the choir's spiritual advisor, delivers with the authority of one who knows God personally. His presence on stage commands attention, his deep articulate voice bears listening. By the end of the concert, there is no one left who has remained in their seat throughout, no voice unsung, no hands left hanging limply at anyone's side, and no one who hasn't felt a mountain move within them by what they have just experienced. The Mississippi Mass Choir moves the masses.

The Mississippi Mass Choir was one of the most influential gospel groups of the late '80s and '90s. Under the musical direction of David R. Curry, the 100-voice choir served their Lord with a sound that made them a constant presence on Billboard's gospel charts. Each of their recordings have reached the top position on the charts. Their debut album, Live, recorded during a 1988 performance at the Jackson, MS, Municipal Auditorium, remained on the charts for 45 weeks and earned the group James Cleveland GMWA awards as contemporary choir of the year and best new traditional artist of the year. Their second album, God Gets the Glory, reached number one two weeks after it was released in 1990. The Mississippi Mass Choir's most successful album, It Remains to Be Seen topped the charts for 12 months and received a Soul Train music award as best gospel album of 1993. The album was the choir's last with founder Frank Williams (June 25, 1947, to March 22, 1993), a member of the Jackson Southernaires and an executive  in the gospel music division of the Maleco record label. Determined to bring together the best gospel voices in Mississippi, Williams had convinced Jerry Mannery, the head of Maleco's gospel division, to sign the band to a record deal and serve as executive director. With their albums released since Williams' passing, I'll See You in Rapture, Praise the Lord, and Emmanuel (God With Us), the Mississippi Mass Choir continues to dedicate itself to its self-described mission of "serving God through song." ~ Craig Harris, All Music Guide

Serving God Through Song" is the motto and the mission of The Mississippi Mass Choir. Although striving to succeed in the gospel music industry, the choir's purpose is to help establish the gospel of Jesus Christ throughout the world.

1 comment:

  1. I'm quite shocked to see that there appears to be Caucasian people in this choir. I never thought so before. But if that is the case, praise God for it and them. It shows how music can bring people together. Stil and all I am once again quite shocked to learn this. Does it have any bearing on my appreciation of this choir's renditions? I don't know. Is this a new venture? Because I never saw them in any videos when they sang behind Whitney Houston. Am I thinking of the same choir? Kudos go out to the orginator and organizer of this remarkable, historical choir.

    At the same time, some of us may have to beat back the tendency to think about other people appropriating what we think of as OUR music. For rights, I suppose we really need to think of it as God's music and go on our "merry" way! Forgive my false pride, for the things that really matter are ETERNAL. And I do know that. So continue to sing your songs of praise and joy. Amen!'