Friday, July 22, 2011
By MIKE HAMILTON, Staff writer
The bombastic and expressive vocals of gospel music are far removed from traditional Japanese culture, which may be why the genre is so popular here.
With the financial support of Tokyo Union Church, Rev. George Redding and a group of American and Japanese gospel singers are hoping their chorus will inspire more people to embrace the genre at the Japan Earthquake Disaster Gospel Music Charity Show.
The extensive roster of artists is bound to impress those at the 1,400-seat capacity Nerima Bunka Center with awe-inspiring sounds. Redding, who has lived in Tokyo for the past 10 years, started organizing the event in February this year. Following the Great East Japan Earthquake on March 11, Redding made the decision to donate profits from the event to disaster victims in the Tohoku region.
While the event will center on gospel, R&B will be provided by artists Christi and Rod Ross. Shoko Yamagishi and Jonny Dynamite will also add a dash of jazz to the event. In total, nine individual artists are set to perform. Also, young quintet PMG Kids will take the stage as will 23-member-strong group True Praise supported by Ray D. Lewis. The group will perform gospel classics such as "Oh Happy Day."
Japan Earthquake Disaster Gospel Music Charity Show will take place at Nerima Bunka Center Hall in Nerima Ward, Tokyo, on July 31. Doors open from 6:45 p.m. Tickets cost ¥3,000 in advance, ¥3,500 at the door. For more information, visit a1production.web.infoseek.co.jp.