Gospel Decade the 90’s

The 1990’s was a period of Contemporary Gospel. Soothing melodies helped to give peace of mind to listeners, opposed to the shouting stomp-like Gospels before it. Contemporary Gospel is a development of our faculties and powers through a relationship with God.  It reinforced the belief that God is the Master of our Faith and the Captain of our soul. This new music had it’s crossover into the world of entertainment through such stars as Ray Charles, Al Green, Aretha Franklin, The Edwin Hawkins Singers (O Happy Day), and Andrea Crouch (The Blood Will Never Lose its Power). 

Prominent Artist: 

  • Yolanda Adams, – In 1990, she was discovered by producer/keyboardist Ben Tankard and signed to his independent label Tribute Records, and then released “Through the Storm”.  Yolanda Adams is known for her Pioneering blend of Gospel with R&B, And Jazz infused touch. Her hit 1999 single “Open My Heart” could almost be mistaken for a secular piece if not for is meaningful lyrics, uplifting her love for christ. Yolanda also went on well past her 90’s career to hold her own Radio Show on famous Gospel station Praise 102.5, making her even more of a house hold name.
  • Donnie McClurkin – Donnie McClurkin is a decorated gospel artist having won three Grammy Awards, ten Stellar Awards, two BET Awards, two Soul Train Awards, one Dove Award and one NAACP Image Award over the years. He has sold over 10 million albums worldwide over the years. Donnie McClurkin can be considered a pivotal gospel artist during the 90s from his timeless contributions like “Stand” and “We Fall Down” which are still celebrated to this day. McClurkin produces gospel hits in a number of different languages like Japanese, Russian, Spanish, and Dutch in most live performances. Another form that gospel music was able to break into mainstream was through popularized, religious films like the movie “The Prince of Egypt” which contained the songs “I am” and “Humanity” written and performed by Donnie McClurkin
  • Kirk Franklin – Kirk Franklin contemporary gospel artist singer, songwriterr, pianist influences from traditional southern gospel to r&b , hip-hop released first album in 199. His melodies and harmony parts were easy to teach to ensembles, and congaegations sung along to them had an uncommon connection with the youth. Most elder churchgoers seen he reached the youth easily. This music many legends have sampled his songs from Whitey Houston to the Georgia Mass Choir group he started out with “ God’s Property” were younger and franklin better connect with the younger folks and a way for him to reach out to the younger generations “ holy dope dealer” Franklin embraced the hip-hop generation, transform influences into gospel music “ franklin and god’s property marked the first time the word didn’t feel force-fed he stood to gospel tradition and attempted in making secular sounding religions music many people looked down on Franklin’s change of style of gospel music but he made It so he was able to reach out not to the older generations but the younger generations as well.

Prominent Compositions: 

Kirk Franklin – Something about the name of Jesus


Donnie McClurkin- “Stand”


Yolanda Adams-  Open my Heart


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