Broadcast Music, Inc.® (BMI®), a global leader in music rights management, is set to salute gospel leaders Daryl Coley and Richard Smallwood at its 15th annual Trailblazers of Gospel Music Awards Luncheon in Nashville.
The event is slated for Friday, January 17, the day before the 29th Annual Stellar Awards, at Rocketown (601 Fourth Avenue South). Gospel music’s premier songwriters, brightest stars and leading industry executives will attend the invitation-only event, which is part industry celebration and part awe-inspiring worship service. bmi will also announce the Most Performed Gospel Song of the Year at the luncheon.
Daryl Coley’s voice is an inimitable instrument able to fuse musical genres into a unique, mellifluous and cohesive sound. His multi-decade career began as singer with Edwin Hawkins, which led to being a songwriter and musical director for Lady Tramaine Hawkins. Lead vocal appearances on recordings for James Cleveland’s Gospel Music Workshop of America resulted in Coley’s solo debut, Just Daryl. What followed was a string of Stellar, Dove and grammy award nominations for career-defining albums including Beyond the Veil: Live at Bobby Jones Gospel XIII and Oh, the Lamb. Coley has recorded a landmark collection of more than 100 studio performances and worked with some of the industry’s legends, including Stevie Wonder, Nancy Wilson and Philip Bailey. Most recently, Coley received a Doctorate of Sacred Music from the Ray of Hope Theological Seminary and Bible College International School of Divinity.
Richard Smallwood is a legend in his own time. After more than three decades as one of the most popular inspirational artists in the music business, with classic tunes such as “Total Praise,” “Center of My Joy,” and “I Love the Lord” to his credit, the GRAMMY-nominated, Stellar and Dove award-winning songwriter and musician continues to enjoy widespread popularity and influence.
His seminal recordings with the Richard Smallwood Singers and Vision include Psalms, Adoration: Live in Atlanta and Journey: Live in New York. Each album and song released continually landed on the top of the gospel charts and in the repertoires of choirs throughout the world. His songs traverse genre boundaries and have been recorded by Whitney Houston, Chaka Khan, Destiny’s Child and many others. In 2006, Smallwood was inducted into the Gospel Music Associations’ Gospel Music Hall of Fame. He is currently exploring his gift as an author, as he works on completing his autobiography Total Praise, scheduled to be released in 2014.
In an effort to share the experience of the awe-inspiring 2013 fete, BMI, in partnership with Entertainment One Music (eOne Music), released the bmi Trailblazers of Gospel Music Live 2013 album on October 22. Recorded live on January 18 at the 14th annual bmi Trailblazers of Gospel Music Awards Luncheon, the CD features performances from Anaysha Figueroa-Cooper, Pastor Shirley Caesar, Le’Andria Johnson, Donald Lawrence & Company, Yolanda Adams and Kierra Sheard. The album can be purchased now at iTunes and Amazon.
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