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‘Television’ Articles

Sunday’s Best Season 4 Premiere on BET: Recap Episode 1 & 2

Sunday Best Season 4
It’s Backkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk! BET’s Sunday’s Best premiered last night with auditions in Atlanta, Dallas and Los Angeles. This season will feature the same judges, Donnie McClurkin and gospel duo Mary Mary (Erica Campbell and Tina Campbell). As always, the beloved, Kirk Franklin will be the host.

The first episode of the two-hour series took place in Atlanta. The five Judges were comprised of Pastor E. Dewey Smith, and previous Sunday’s Best contestants, Durward Davis, Dontavious Boatwright, Crystal Aiken and Yanna Crawley. What can I say, the Atlanta auditions did not disappoint. It had an interesting mixture of good, bad and everything in between.

I especially liked the vocals on sixteen year old Anthony Brown, unfortunately he is too young to compete. What a shame! I would love to see him a few more times in the competition! The previous contestants turned judges gathered at the end to deliver an amazing vocal performance.

Check out a snippet of the Atlanta audition below:


In the second episode auditions were held in both Dallas and Los Angeles. S/N: Dallas was really the first city they visited so not sure why BET chose to feature it in the second episode. The highlight of the Dallas audition hands down goes to David Mann aka Mr. Brown, who came in the auditions with a scarf covering his face, singing the infamous, “This is Your Granddaddy”! Hilarious!

All in all, it looks like it may be a male winner this year, as there were several powerhouses in the auditions from the three cities. In total, ten contestants were chosen in Atlanta, five was selected in Dallas, and an additional ten were chose in Los Angeles.

Rejoice and Shout: An in-depth look into the roots of black gospel

Rejoice and Shout
Rejoice and Shout, is a documentary feature about the evolution of black gospel music over a 200 year span. This is an amazing documentary on African American Christianity, focusing on the earlier days filled with spirituals and hymns to the modern day inclusion of urban hip hop elements.

The film closely focuses on more than a dozen artists, including Mahalia Jackson, Andrae Crouch, The Clara Ward Singers, The Dixie Hummingbirds, The Golden Gate Quartet, The Staple Singers, and Reverend James Cleveland.

Rejoice and Shout also allows greats interviews with some of gospel’s leading authorities such as Anthony Heilbut, Jacquie Gales Webb, Bill Carpenter and Smokey Robinson.

This film really gives you an opportunity to learn about the roots of gospel music. I guarantee that no matter what age, race, or religion you are, this documentary will definitely move you to a point you never knew existed.

About the Director

Don McGlynn, 55, has made more than a dozen musical documentaries since his first film in 1982: “Art Pepper: Notes from a Jazz Survivor.” McGlynn currently lives in Denmark with his wife and children. In a recent interview, McGlynn recalled that he was first introduced to gospel as a young boy when he saw Mahalia Jackson on television.

“Then I started seeking it out more in particular,” McGlynn added. “Among the greatest shows I’ve ever seen and certainly the most intense show I ever saw was James Cleveland with his choir (in the early 1980s). I literally thought the walls were gonna come down, it was so intense!”

McGlynn, coupled with producer Joe Lauro’s collection of more than 20,000 individual musical performances, which ran more than 10,000 hours long, was able to bring us a never before seen look into a part of history that yearns to be embraced.

Rejoice and Shout has received rave reviews from critics across the nation. Be sure to support this documentary and check it out as it comes near you. I especially enjoyed the inclusion of the 1960s footage of the Staples Singers. So I say, thank you Mr. McGlynn.

Check out the trailer for Rejoice and Shout below:

The list of play dates are as follows:

On Screen

Hudson, NY: Time and Space Limited
Denver, CO: Denver Film Center/Colfax
Arlington, MA: Regent Theatre
Chicago, IL: Lawndale Cinemas 10
Los Angeles, CA: Royal
Little Rock, AR: Market Street Cinema
Edina, MN: Edina 4

Opening

7/28/2011
Santa Fe, NM: CCA Cinematheque

7/30/2011
Bellingham, WA: Pickford Film Center 3

8/1/2011
Juneau, AK: Gold Town Nickelodeon

8/2/2011
Huntington, NY: Cinema Arts Centre

8/4/2011
Miami, FL: O Cinema

8/5/2011
Hartford, CT: Real Art Ways Cinema
Shreveport, LA: Robinson Film Center 2

8/21/2011
Norfolk, VA: Naro Expanded Cinema

9/15/2011
Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Cinema
Cleveland, OH: Cleveland Cinematheque

9/22/2011
Henderson, NC: Marketplace Cinema 6

10/21/2011
Permbroke HM19, BM: Tradewinds Auditorium at the Bermuda Underwater

Recap: Episode 11 of BET’s Sunday’s Best Season 3 [Final Two Contestants]

Sunday's Best Season 3

Oh wow!! It seems like it came so quick this year, but here we are down to the final two contestants. Elder Goldwire McLendon and LeeAndria Johnson. Let me first say, I really loved the performance by Ledisi and the wonderful Vanessa Bell Armstrong. Goldwire and LeeAndria did their thang. Now LeeAndria got some pipes on her, the way she sung “Running Back To You” was ..I mean..just WOW! And Goldwire with “I Know It Was The Blood”, AMAZING! I am in awe!

They are both so good but for so many different reasons. If it was only up to singing abilities, I think LeeAndria Johnson would win hands down. However, the annointing over Elder Goldwire McLendon is simply amazing and at 79 years old!! I mean simply remarkable. I just don’t know. This is a hard one. What do you guys think?

Recap: Episode 10 of BET’s Sunday’s Best Season 3

Sunday's Best Season 3

Okay tonight the show was divided into two halves..so double the fun!! For the first half the special guest was Israel Houghton. He sung, “Moving Forward”. I love that song. He did an awesome job. If you don’t already have the album you simply can’t delay in getting it today. It is featured on his latest solo project, entitled “The Power of One” .

The Power Of One

Durward Davis, was up first singing Eric Clapton’s, “Change the World”. He took that song to another level .

LeeAnndria Johnson, singing “Heaven Help Us All”, she did a good job. I wasn’t particularly overwhelmed but she did a good job nonetheless.

Elder Goldwire McLendon was up next. Singing, “Falling in Love With Jesus”. He really delivered. I can’t say too much more. His voice is amazing, his wisdom is empowering, and his endurance is strengthening to all. God bless him!!

Okay, time for the second half. It starts of with special guest, Brian Courtney Wilson, singing one of my favorites, “All I Need”. I was blessed to see him perform live a few months ago and I encourage all to check him out if you ever have a chance.

Durward Davis back up for the second time singing, “I Need You Now”. All the judges felt that he took them on a journey throughout the song. Tina said, “You are just so polished..your presence is so amazing..you are a skilled professional”. Durward always do a good job but his story isn’t as good as LeeAndria and Elder McLendon so I am not sure where that leaves him. Well I guess we will know by the end of the night!!

LeeAndria Johnson, singing “I love the lord he heard my cry..” She sung that song. That girl can sing. Her voice is such a powerhouse. She started shouting at the end and gave a praise that you wouldn’t believe!! Get it LeeAndria!! The judges loved her and so did I. Yolanda said, “You have not seen what God is going to do to you.” Donnie is a preaching brother. God truly speaks to him and I am grateful for it.

Elder Goldwire McLendon, sung “Ole Happy Day”. Tina, “You are just good, good, good…I just love you!”. Yolanda, “..You make us want to keep living for God..”. Donnie McClurkin said, “No matter what happen, you are Sunday’s Best”.

Now, only two can advance to the next round. This was a really hard decision.

And the two finalist are….Elder Goldwire McLendon and LeeAndria Johnson. So it is up to us next week. We have to vote so stay tuned!!!

Recap: Episode 8 of BET’s Sunday’s Best Season 3

Sunday's Best Season 3

Back again..and we are now down to seven finalist..let’s go..

To begin, Chrisette Michelle was the guest artist for today. She sung “Stand”. Chrisette looks amazing and job she did on the song was just as awesome as she looke!!. The theme for tonight was “One Mic”, wherein they limited the musical instruments in an effort to focus on the vocals. Remember we are down to seven finalists so let’s not waste time!!

First up was Dathan Thigpen (You know the handsome brother with the dreadlocks). Tina felt that something about it didn’t quite connect for her. The other judges agreed. He didn’t do as well as I expected. I never really got into his performance and it is sad because his performance last week was great, so you know he is quite capable of doing better.
Next up, Tiffany Carlin-Laird, singing “Goin up Yonder” (one of my favorite songs), and she did a great job. Tina loved it. Yolanda said, “I know that Tremaine Hawkins would love to hear you sing that.” Donnie loved it as well. Without a doubt, we will be seeing her next week.

Durward Davis, was up next. He sung, Kirk Franklin’s “Lean on Me”. I love his range. He really changed the song up, even Kirk Franklin was in awe. Donnie said “What you did in a few minutes with that song was remarkable..” Tina, “That was utter complete shear perfection to me.”

Now, the wild card winner from last week, Martha Burries. It is something about her that I like. Since they decided to bring her back as a wild card pick. And both weeks she has gave stellar performances. So Kudos to the judges for that choice!! As far as her performance tonight, Yolanda said it best when she said, “I think your talent is tremendous”. Tina followed up with “You are probably the most skillful singer in the competition”. Enough said.

Up next…Brian Smith singing Katinas, “Lord I lift my Name on High”. Tina and Yolanda were generous, noting that they liked it. But Donnie felt that it didn’t quite connect for him. I think all 3 judges were right. Brian did a good job singing but I think he could have did more.

LeeAndria Johnson did her THING!! She sung, “Endow Me” by Coko. That girl can sing without a doubt. Yolanda said she is “One of the most phenomenal female voices of our time.” Wow!!

Saving the best for last, Goldwire McLendon, sung “How Great Thou Art”. And once again, he did what he do best. I am constantly amazed by the powerful voice of this man. We should all hope that we have the anointing and power that this man has at 79 years young!!

Now it’s time for elimination and to no surprise Brian Smith and Dathan were sent home. So now we are down to 5 finalists! Can’t wait until next week!!

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