Sep 7, 2012
Woman of Faith
CeCe Winans on devotion, music and life
(page 1 of 2)
Sanctified songstress and Detroit’s own CeCe Winans resumes her role of judge for Verizon’s How Sweet the Sound at Joe Louis Arena, coming to Detroit Saturday, Sept. 15.
Now in its fifth year, the celebration of gospel music, the choir competition allows local groups to showcase their talent in an effort to earn for the title of “The Best Gospel Choir in America.”
While she won't be a part of the Detroit show, Winans is part of a panel featuring Erica Campbell of Mary Mary, Fred Hammond and Hezekiah Walker. Grammy winners Donald Lawrence and Yolanda Adams will serve as hosts.
Recently, Winans shared with BLAC her hopes for the tour, her work on BET’s Sunday Best and how she balances faith and fame.
What kind of things can people expect this year?
Yolanda’s hosting; I think this is the first time she’s been involved. We’ve got a few more artists that haven’t been involved before, so that’ll be different. You have some of us who’ve been a part of it for a while—myself, Fred Hammond, (Erica Campbell of) Mary Mary. But I think for the most part, it’s the same. It’s the same, but different because you have different choirs who entered and the excitement from the choirs, the incredible voices and discipline that’s on display is pretty amazing.
I look forward to it every year. First of all, to just hang out with a lot of my friends in the industry. We don’t get a chance to see each other, so we have a lot of fun among ourselves, but also to get a chance to see choirs in the spotlight is great because that’s really where all of us started at, in the church choir, and it’s really the foundation of gospel music.
You really forget their labor, sometimes, you just kind of think it automatically happens, but (the choirs and directors) come together and they give of their time and they rehearse and they rehearse and they rehearse—and you know they rehearse when you hear them on stage because a lot of them come in excellence and it’s amazing how you get all those voices to sound like one.
I just applaud How Sweet the Sound for creating a platform for the choirs.
You’re also a judge on BET’s Sunday Best. What’s the experience been like for you?
This is my first year being a part of that; it’s been a lot of fun! I’m enjoying it immensely. I’m always excited to hear new talent, see new talent—young talent, new talent, it’s all exciting to me. I love that I get a chance to speak into their lives.
We’ve been doing this for a long time now and so, I love to share any wisdom that I have about this industry, about being on the platform. I’m having a lot of fun hanging out with Kirk, Donny, Yolanda and Kim Burrell; they’re hilarious and we spend a lot of time laughing. But again, it’s a joy to see great talent on display.