Entertainment Movies Music Stage Tasty Clips Television

BILL VAUGHAN’S TASTY CLIPS: Gospel rhythms to set sail

Come hell or high water, gospel music superstar Kirk Franklin finds as many platforms as possible to spread his uplifting message.  Now he’s utilizing the latter as a performing spokesperson for the debut of The Gospel Music Cruise, a full-ship charter featuring a line-up of the most highly acclaimed and recognized artists in the field.

Yolanda Adams, Fred Hammond, Shirley Caesar, Tye Tribbett, Marvin Sapp and Take 6 are set for the voyage that sails March 6-13, 2016 from Fort Lauderdale to Grand Turk, Puerto Rico’s San Juan, Tortola and Half Moon Cay.

Hosts Kirk Whalum and Regina Belle also will be joined by comedian Alonzo Bodden and dance band DW3, with a special appearance by Donnie McClurkin, a judge on Franklin’s hit BET series “Sunday Best.”

When Tasty Clips spoke to the hit maker responsible for “Stomp,” “Why We Sing,” “I Smile” and so much more, he was returning from an all-nighter in the studio recording his first new music in four years.

As for why so long, Franklin admitted struggling with apprehension.  “I wondered did I have anything relevant to say,” he revealed.  “I never want to do an album for the sake of doing an album.  I want to be very substantive and progressive in my approach to try to get the conversation of God within pop culture.”

Inspirations come from a plethora of music that includes songs from Mumford and Sons, Kendrick Lamar, old Richard Franklin, Yo-Yo Ma, The Isley Brothers and Imagine Dragons.

Says Franklin: “I shocked one of my daughter’s girlfriends when we picked them up from camp.  On the way back, inside my CD player was Taylor Swift.  They couldn’t believe that a black man was rocking Taylor Swift.  But it’s a dope album and I respect music.  So I just try to surround myself with what I think is great because that’s what I want to be.”

But isn’t that secular music?  “What makes music secular is not the sound, but the lyrical content,” he said. “That’s very important. When you talk to a generation of young musicians, you don’t want them to differentiate that gospel music can only sound like this. That it can only use those instruments. That’s unfair to music and people.

“I will trust God to let [my album] be what it’s supposed to be and try to play my role,” he added.  “I see myself as the pen and God’s the writer.  The people’s hearts, that’s the paper.  My job is to be accessible so when God needs a pen he can pick me up.”

Visit: www.thegospelmusiccruise.com for more on the excursion.

808 DAY: The 35th anniversary of the groundbreaking Roland TR-808 drum machine is the core of the second Low End Theory Festival 2015 on Aug. 8 (08/08). The fest will feature live music headliners such as Flying Lotus, Earl Sweatshirt (of Odd Future), Daedelus, jazz bassist Thundercat and others.

There also will be production workshops where artists will share beat-making techniques and Roland synth demos, as well as gear and T-shirt giveaways and other surprises throughout the day. For more info, visit their Facebook page.  Festivities can be tracked on social media with the hashtag #808day.

CLIPPETTES: R.I.P. House of Blues Sunset Strip.  Spent many a good time and had quite a few good meals there…

Dr. Dre will release “Compton: A Soundtrack,” his first release in 16 years, on Aug. 7…

Famed TV producer Norman Lear told the Television Critics Association that he’s working on a Latino version of the CBS sitcom “One Day at a Time”…

Najee, whose new release “You, Me and Forever” was just released on Shanachie, performs at the Hyatt Regency – Newport Beach on Aug. 7 with special guest Gary Taylor…

Season two of ABC’s “American Crime” will add Andre (3000) Benjamin of OutKast fame to the cast that features Timothy Hutton, Felicity Huffman and Regina King in a new storyline…

Mike Epps, Rob Dyrdek and DJ Clark Kent are but a few of the devotees giving testimonials of their love for their kicks in the documentary “Sneakerheadz,” opening theatrically Aug. 7 at the Arena & Laemmle Music Hall.  It also will be available on AT&T u-Verse on Aug. 7 and Vimeo On Demand on Aug. 21…

Congrats to Trai Byers and Grace Gealey (Andre Lyon & “Boo Boo Kitty” on “Empire”) on their engagement.  Met them both at the Fox Upfront in NYC a few months ago and they did a great job of keeping that relationship on the sly…

It’s Gladys Knight and The O’Jays hitting the stage of the Microsoft Theatre on Aug. 9…

The Hollywood Bowl will present The Wayne Shorter Quartet and an all-star tribute to the late bassist Jaco Pastorius with Herbie Hancock, Booker T. Jones, Sam Moore and others on Aug. 12…

TC ON TV: AUG 9 – “Close Up with the Hollywood Reporter” (SUNDANCE): Features David Oyelowo & Jon Voight… “Food Network Star” (FOOD): Eddie Jackson has looked like the winner from the start (and the net could use a bit of on-air diversity post Neelys)…

AUG. 10 – “She’s Got Game” (VH1): Think “The Bachelor” with rapper The Game as the prize… “Running Wild with Bear Grylls” (NBC): Michelle Rodriguez…

AUG. 11 – “Conan” (TBS): Ice Cube, O’Shea Jackson Jr. & Alabama Shakes…

AUG. 12 – “Watch What Happens Live” (BRAVO): Salma Hayek & Craig Robinson…

AUG. 13 – “Lip Sync Battle” (SPIKE): Iggy Azalea vs. Nick “Swaggy P” Young.

SCREEN & BE HEARD: “Bridging the Divide: Tom Bradley and the Politics of Race,” narrated by Emmy Award-winning actress Alfre Woodard, will be shown at a free screening from 7-9:45 p.m. at C.S.U.’s Luckman Theatre (5151 State University Dr.)  Afterwards, a panel will include Lorraine Bradley, eldest daughter of the late mayor, and the filmmakers Lyn Goldfarb and Alison Sotomayor.

TASTY QUIP: “I face the same problems. I have the same potholes, I have the same traffic, I have some of the same fears around policemen. So you start to learn we have more in common. Where you come from becomes less relevant.” – South African comic and new “Daily Show” host TREVOR NOAH to the Television Critics Association.

“Tasty Clips” is an entertainment column published in The Wave to update readers on the activities and accomplishments of black celebrities and artists on television, in music and at the movies. To reach Bill Vaughan, send email to tastyclips@yahoo.com.