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Luther Wardlaw Of The Famed Wardlaw Brothers
Embarks On Solo Career and Preps New Single “On The Way”

Lyons, GA — Luther Wardlaw is one-fifth of the Billboard Chart-topping, Dove Award, and Stellar Award nominated Contemporary Gospel group The Wardlaw Brothers. Luther and his brothers have captivated audiences on stage and television with their dynamic style and charisma, and incredibly tight vocal harmony. They have ministered in churches across the country and abroad with a sincere passion for people and unwavering love for Jesus Christ.

As The Wardlaw Brothers (TWB5) continue their quest in ministering the Word of God and for making hit music, Luther, who is a songwriter, musician, and producer, is taking another step forward. Luther is now embarking on a solo career in addition to keeping his role with TWB5.

“Because we all have different situations and face different giants in life, we all have a different story to tell,” says Luther. “I am excited about this new journey of a solo career, which gives me the outlet and the platform to share my story with the world while promoting the Goodness, the Mercy, and The Grace of our Almighty God.”

In addition to his new single and future solo album, Luther is making his debut acting appearance in the movie The Perfect Mate. The delightful, family-friendly comedy movie is streaming now on UrbanFlixTV and stars Chico Benymon, Brittany Lucio, Lawrence Hilton-Jacobs, and Jackée Harry. The Perfect Mate is directed and written by Aaron L. Williams (On Angel’s Wings, Preaching to the Pastor, The Pastor’s Secrets, Mama I Want to Sing). Luther has a co-starring role as the character Junior Adams, son of lead characters Reverend and Mrs. Adams played by Jacobs and Harry.

Luther’s arranging and scoring skills are showcased as several of his original works are featured throughout the film and on THE PERFECT MATE MOVIE SOUNDTRACK. Luther’s songwriting and producing talents have also garnered TWB5 Top 20 Billboard Radio hits “Right Now Lord” and “God Has Kept Me”. More of his songwriting prowess includes the theme song “Angel’s Wing’s” for the Christian film On Angel’s Wings, a recent ground-breaking collaboration with Dove Award-winning Southern Gospel group Legacy Five on the song “9 Makes Us 1”, and several jingles for national commercials and the U.S. Census Bureau.

Proverbs 18:16 says “A man’s gift makes room for him, and brings him before great men.” 2021 is already proving to be a year that is magnifying Luther’s musical brilliance and creating a new dimension of respect for his multiplicity of talents. This is because Luther continues to dedicate his gifts back to the Lord in all facets of his career.

Visit LutherWardlaw.com and his social media platforms for a sneak peak of his new single and find more of what’s on the way!


Gospel singer Duranice Pace Passes

Evangelist Duranice Pace, a member of family gospel group, The Anointed Pace Sisters, passed away from health complications on January 14, 2021. She was 62 years old.
BY BROOKLYN WHITE · JANUARY 15, 2021 Essence.com

Evangelist Duranice Pace, a member of family gospel group, The Anointed Pace Sisters, passed away from health complications on January 14, 2021. She was 62 years old.

Pace grew up in Atlanta, where she sang with her 9 siblings—8 girls and 1 boy–at her father, Murphy Pace Jr.’s, church. She spoke of her upbringing to Voyage ATL in March 2020, saying, “I got started when I was five years old. I was inspired by my father, who was a professional quartet singer for Gospel Starlights and my mom, who sang during praise and worship [for] what was then known as testimony service at church.” She then added, “My father would have rehearsal every Wednesday in our living room with his singing group, and my siblings and I would peep in on their rehearsals.”

The Anointed Pace Sisters released their first studio album, It’s Morning Time, in 1992, on which Duranice sang both alto and soprano. The group went on to share 6 more projects, including My Purpose and It’s Already Done. Duranice’s unique style of gospel was inspired by musical films and Broadway plays.

In addition to singing, the late figure toured the world as a preacher. According to Music Crowns, she traveled to “South Korea, Las Vegas, California, New York, London, Italy, Australia, Japan and Switzerland,” sharing the gospel and lifting spirits worldwide.

In 2013, Duranice, along with her sisters, was featured on an episode of Iyanla: Fix My Life. The singer and preacher shot to viral fame in 2017, after a clip of her singing to her family on Thanksgiving began to make rounds on social media. She also was interviewed by Steve Harvey in 2019 for his eponymous daytime talk show, on which she also performed.

The Pace family matriarch, Mother Betty Ann Pace, passed away in July 2020. Supt. Murphy Pace Jr. and Murphy Pace 111 died in 2008 and 2011, respectively. Duranice is survived by her siblings, Phyllis, June Pace–Martin, Melonda, Dejuaii, Leslie, Latrice, Lydia, Lashun, as well as her son, Demarcus Wardell Love.

“I’m inspired because I love people, and it makes me happy to see people smile,” Duranice said during an aforementioned interview. “This is why I call my business a healing ministry because people ask me to help heal them and make them feel better. I know it’s not coming from me, but from God and I’m so thankful that I can help touch people’s hearts.


Gospel Great Bishop Rance Lee Allen Transitions
From This Life to Heavenly Rewards

http://www.wkbo.net/bishop-rance-allen/‎(opens in a new tab)

Bishop Rance Allen, of the Grammy® Award nominated inspirational soul and gospel trio, The Rance Allen Group, has passed away at the age of 71. “While recovering from a medical procedure at Heartland ProMedica [in Sylvania, OH], Bishop Rance Allen passed away around 3 AM this morning,” said Allen’s wife of 49 years, Ellen Allen, and his manager, Toby Jackson, in a joint statement. “I wasn’t expecting to hear this news this morning,” said Tyscot Records President, Bryant Scott, who was nearly speechless upon hearing of the singer’s death.  “This is a great loss to us personally but also to the church community at large.” 

The Rance Allen Group’s progressive brand of Gospel and Allen’s signature grunts and squalls have inspired a generation of gospel artists ranging from Kirk Franklin and Fred Hammond to John P. Kee and Bryan Andrew Wilson. In the 1970s, they pioneered a fusion of R&B rhythms with spiritually charged message music on hits such as “Ain’t No Need of Crying,” “I Belong to You” and their cover of The Temptation’s “Just My Imagination” as “Just My Salvation.” The retro-soul vibe carried over into the group’s hits of the last two decades such as “You That I Trust,” “Miracle Worker,” and “Something About the Name Jesus,” which has clocked over 175 million streams. It’s a brand that won them fans beyond the Gospel world such as  American Idol’s Randy Jackson, and Pop rockers Huey Lewis & The News. In a 2019 Rolling Stone interview, Lewis cited “Ain’t No Need of Crying” as one of his all-time Top 5 favorite soul songs alongside tracks by Ray Charles and others. 

Rance Allen was born November 19, 1948 in Monroe, MI. One of twelve children, he began singing and preaching as Little Rance Allen at the age of five. “We were raised in a family where you went to church every single night,” he once said. “To keep our interest, my grandmother Emma Pearl went to a pawn shop and brought instruments, drums, guitars and amplifiers.” Using records by the Rev. James Cleveland and Ray Charles as his guides, he learned to play the piano before picking up the guitar with Chuck Berry as an influence. His grandparents served as his agents, but he once told writer Lee Hildebrand, “I didn’t have a life like most kids had. I wasn’t allowed to go out and play baseball with the guys and do the things a kid does.”

Circa 1967, Rance, with himself on guitar, started the Rance Allen Singers with his older brother Tom on drums and younger brother Steve on bass. They recorded their first song “Let’s Get Together and Love” – a psychedelic song with Allen’s stratospheric high notes and a direct message about Jesus Christ sacrificing his life on the Cross so that mankind could love one another – for the local Reflect label. Then, in 1971 they won a prize of $500 at a Detroit talent contest where legendary Stax Records promotion man Dave Clark was in the audience. Clark liked what he heard and took the renamed Rance Allen Group into the studio and recorded an album’s worth of material that was purchased by Stax Records.

Stax President Al Bell loved the trio’s music so much that he started The Gospel Truth subsidiary specifically to promote it. Their first single was “Just My Salvation,” a 1971 gospel cover of The Temptations’ “Just My Imagination.” Soon, they were appearing on bills with the likes of The Dramatics and Barry White and taking their R&B-infused gospel to an un-churched audience. Their following was built off of hits such as “I Got to Be Myself,” “Ain’t No Need in Crying “and “That Will Be Good Enough for Me.”  

In 1975, they moved to Capitol Records where they recorded a couple of albums before returning to Stax in 1979 after the company was purchased by Fantasy Records. During this period, the group enjoyed its biggest Stax-era radio hit, “I Belong to You,” which reached the Billboard R&B Singles Top 30 chart. From there, they moved to Myrrh Records where they recorded two albums, including,  I Give Myself to You, which peaked at #5 on the Billboard Top Gospel Albums chart in 1985.

It was during the l980s that Rance Allen really began to focus on evangelism. Church of God in Christ (COGIC) leader, Bishop G.E. Patterson, began to mentor him. Under his guidance, Allen founded the New Bethel Church of God COGIC in Toledo, OH in July 1985 and he was elevated to Bishop within the Church of God in Christ (COGIC) in 2011. Aside from preaching at his own church, Allen spent a lot of time on the road evangelizing with Bishop Patterson. Allen didn’t record again until former Stax chief, Al Bell, launched Bellmark Records in 1991. The Rance Allen Group rolled out the album,  Phenomenon. It hit #1 on the Billboard gospel albums sales chart with the radio hit “Miracle Worker,” and earned them a performance slot on “The Arsenio Hall Show.”

A decade later, they signed with Tyscot Records and entered a new phase of their career with the Deitrick Haddon-produced set,  All the Way, in 2002. However, it was 2004’s  The Live Experience that has become the biggest selling album of the group’s entire career. It featured Kirk Franklin on “Something About the Name Jesus” which has amassed over 175 million streams alone. The album also featured appearances from Fred Hammond on “Miracle Worker” and LaShun Pace on “I Can’t help Myself.” In the years since, the group has scored radio hits with “Do Your Will,” “You That I Trust” with Paul Porter, “Closest Friend” and “A Lil Louder (Clap Your Hands).” 

In 2018, rap icon Snoop Dogg featured Rance Allen on his Top 10 Billboard Gospel Digital Songs Sales chart hit, “Blessing Me Again.” It won a BET Award for Best Gospel/Inspirational Song in 2019. At the time of his death, there were plans in the works for Allen to record a new gospel album with contributions from PJ Morton, Charlie Wilson and Kirk Franklin before the COVID19 pandemic put the project on hold. The Rance Allen Group’s most recent studio recording, “I’m So Glad It’s Christmas (Tyscot),” was released on all digital music platforms on October 302020.

Allen is survived by his wife, Ellen Marie Allen, and his brothers, Steve and Tom, and other extended family members.

Hits: 12

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