The intersection of Crenshaw and Rodeo was grooving for the third annual "A Taste of Soul" on Saturday. Radio station KJLH hosted the event that featured the best in gospel, jazz, funk, R&B and local Los Angeles talent. It was six and a half hours of a non-stop partying.
The One in Christ Church started the event with their version of "Glory of The Lord." The song had the crowd in worship mode, all the way until the end of their three-song performance. Greg, who is the pastor of the church, commented, "We are a new church with an old message that Jesus saves. It was a wonderful chance to lift up the name of the Lord in song. The crowd was second to none; to have them feel the spirit with us was amazing."
The Pilgrim Strangers, a local quartet gospel group, who have been performing in and around the LA area for more than four years, kept the worship experience going with their versions of classic gospel songs including the sanctified gospel classic "Jesus Can Do It." The crowd and the radio personalities were feeling the spirit with them all throughout their performance. "It was a blessing to perform for these wonderful people," commented group member Ray.
West Angeles Church of God In Christ's Sanctuary Choir set the stage on fire with their performance of songs from their latest CD "No Limit." They ended their performance on a high note with a rousing version of "Jesus Can Work It Out." The song, along with their others had this reporter praising and thanking God with them.
JDI recording artists Renee Spearman & Prez, who are mentored by gospel legend Dr. Bobby Jones, sang selections from their second CD "He Changed Me" which is currently doing well on Billboard magazine's gospel charts.
David Reddic performed his Obama anthem "Season of Change," that set the crowd in a good kind of frenzy. He has performed this song at the Democratic National Convention as well as all over the United States. "I have been writing for a long time and I feel blessed that this song has taken me this far," David stated during our conversation backstage.
The Majestic Voices lived up to their name by turning in a stellar performance of some great gospel classics including "Jesus, Jesus, Jesus."
New artist Chaz Sheperd sang three selections from his upcoming CD entitled "The First One." Shepard performed the soul stirring song "Awesome God," that had some in the crowd weeping for joy.
Actor, game show host, singer Wayne Brady turned in an A-plus performance of songs from his new CD "A Long Time Coming," including what he called his tribute to the legendary icon and KJLH owner, Stevie Wonder, which is titled "All I Do." He brought All-For-One's lead singer Jamie Jones on the stage for a duet performance of "All Natural"
It took a while for the crowd to welcome new artist Leigh Jones, but she won them over to her by showing that she is a true soulchild and not just a run of the mill diva. She ended her performance by belting out her new single "Free Fall," which the crowd loved.
Atlanta native, Tony Rich of The Tony Rich Project gave a smoothed out performance of his hits from his decade long career, including songs from his newest CD "Exist." After his performance he commented, " I am so excited to be performing in front of this great crowd. I have performed in front of great audiences but this was the best".
The best performance of the event came when Chante Moore performed some of her classic material such as "Love's Taken Over" and "Free." She also sang "It Ain't Supposed To Be This Way" the newest single from her new CD titled "Love The Woman." During the performance of the song, Chante commented "Because of the change in music industry, you all probably haven't heard that much about the new CD, but I want all of you, after you hear this song to go out and buy this record to help us out."
Spoken word artist, Marc Marcel summed up everyone's feelings by saying, "This Festival brings out the best in our community and it is inspiring to me to see all of the love and respect that we have for one another.