The Evolution of Gospel

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Jason Birchmeier
Though from beginning to end one of the best gospel albums of its era, The Evolution of Gospel became and remains noteworthy because of three songs in particular: "Optimistic," "The Pressure," and "Testify." These three songs rocketed to the upper reaches of the R&B charts in 1992, all three entering the Top 20 and "Optimistic" peaking at number three -- remarkable numbers for such unashamed gospel music. And these weren't flukes or novelty hits. No, these were amazing songs that captured the spirit of the time, in particular the new jack swing production sound that was all the rage in the early '90s. Furthermore, it didn't hurt that Sounds of Blackness teamed with...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Jason Birchmeier
Though from beginning to end one of the best gospel albums of its era, The Evolution of Gospel became and remains noteworthy because of three songs in particular: "Optimistic," "The Pressure," and "Testify." These three songs rocketed to the upper reaches of the R&B charts in 1992, all three entering the Top 20 and "Optimistic" peaking at number three -- remarkable numbers for such unashamed gospel music. And these weren't flukes or novelty hits. No, these were amazing songs that captured the spirit of the time, in particular the new jack swing production sound that was all the rage in the early '90s. Furthermore, it didn't hurt that Sounds of Blackness teamed with the hottest production team of the time for these songs, Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, who were in the process of producing Janet Jackson's Rhythm Nation at the time. The result was three definitive songs that synthesized Jam and Lewis' incredibly dense rhythms with Sounds of Blackness' uplifting gospel technique. The remainder of the album unfortunately didn't feature Jam and Lewis' production, but group mastermind Gary Hines obviously knew he had a winning formula and stuck with the new jack motifs, even if he's a second-rate Teddy Riley at best. As a further testament to this album's monolithic status, it's important to note that much of this album remains as charged as it did at its prime, while all the other Bobby Browns and Color Me Badds of the time admittedly haven't aged nearly as well. Sounds of Blackness never could duplicate the success of Evolution of Gospel, the undisputed zenith of the group's career.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 5/7/1991
  • Label: Perspective Records
  • UPC: 028968100020
  • Catalog Number: 1000

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Sounds of Blackness Primary Artist, Primary Artist, Primary Artist
Jamecia Bennett Soprano (Vocal)
Core Cotton Alto (Vocal)
Robert Edwards Tenor (Vocal)
LaSalle Gabriel Guitar
Jimmy Jam Keyboards
Kevin Johnson Keyboards
Valerie Johnson Alto (Vocal)
Terry Lewis Bass
Wanda Lewis Soprano (Vocal)
Robert Pittman Bass
Larry Sims Trumpet, Piccolo Trumpet
Billy Steele Organ
Lawrence Waddell Keyboards
Stokley Williams Vocals
Gary Hines Piano, Conductor, Conga, Drums, Timbales
Bruce Gordon Bass (Vocal)
Jennifer Whitlock Alto (Vocal)
Kevin Whitlock Conga, Timpani
Shirley Marie Graham Alto (Vocal)
Franklin Wharton Flute, Alto Saxophone, Balafon
Louis J. Wilson Horn, Soprano Saxophone, Tenor Saxophone
Trenon Graham Percussion, Drums
Carrie Harrington Alto (Vocal)
Ann Bennett-Nesby Soprano (Vocal)
Terrence Frierson Tenor (Vocal)
Sonya Kates Vocals
Patricia Lacy Alto (Vocal)
Otis Montgomery Tenor (Vocal)
Dorothy Shelby Alto (Vocal)
Dorothy J. Townes Alto (Vocal)
Cheryl D. Warder-Reeves Soprano (Vocal)
David Wright III Baritone Saxophone, Soprano Saxophone
Rojeem Taylor Bass (Vocal)
Freddie Winston Baritone (Vocal)
Rev. Joseph Young Jr. Bass
Elizabeth J. Turner Soprano (Vocal)
Angela Henderson Soprano (Vocal)
Geoffrey Jones Baritone (Vocal)
Sandra Harris Soprano (Vocal)
Gregory Sears Bass (Vocal)
David B. Young Baritone (Vocal)
Regina Williams Alto (Vocal)
Robin Berry Harp
Technical Credits
Peter Buck Composer
Jimmy Jam Composer, Producer, drum programming
Terry Lewis Composer, Producer
Mike Mills Composer
Michael Stipe Composer
Lance Alexander drum programming
Gary Hines Arranger, Composer, Director, Producer
Bill Berry Composer
Bradley Yost Engineer
Michael L. Bowens Contributor
Chico Cockrell drum programming
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    I like this album.

    This album has great music and even though itis not new, I still enjoyed it. I am looking for a song by sounds of blackness that i used to listen to back in 1995, I lost it but now I am looking for the song. A few words from the song. I know the day is dim chances may be slim, hold on to what u believe, I know it hurts in side, sometimes u sit and cry,u got to hold on to what u believe, Oh my sister don't give up, u just keep the faith an u, will win, oh my brother don't give up u just keep on hanging on, be strong, don't give up. If u know this song or know whee i can buy it, please let me know. Thanks

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