T.D. Jakes is showing his support for gospel musicians by attending the
annual Festival of Praise tour featuring Fred Hammond, one of the
show’s organizers who says the preacher’s impact extends far beyond what
most people know.
year’s Festival of Praise tour features Hammond along with Hezekiah
Walker, Israel Houghton, Karen Clark Sheard, Regina Belle and Casey J.
“Gospel music has taken a turn and not in the
flourishing direction. It’s taken a turn kind of headed toward a
drought,” Hammond said in an interview with The Christian Post
last month. “When you put a 52-city tour together, you have some
moments where promoters are a little discouraged from doing things with
gospel music because you can’t get the sales. It makes sense on paper,
you think you can get it done and then you you don’t get support from
the audience or from the buying public.”
Despite the challenges,
Hammond said he’s thrilled to be joined on stage with some of gospel
music’s most talented artists year after year.
“It’s a great
cast to work with. Last year we had a great time, the year before that
Donnie McClurkin and I had a great time,” Hammond said. “But each year
we keep getting blessed with great people to work with. I love it, it’s
just a good eclectic mix and understands what it takes.”
an interview with CP last year, Houghton said that having multiple
Grammy, Stellar and Dove award winners on the stage together tends to
breed competition, but in a good way.
“It’s been a lot of fun. We
work hard, we play hard. I think the thing that has really stood out
about this tour is the sense of camaraderie and unity which isn’t normal
among musicians and artists,” Houghton told CP.
“There’s always going to be that slight healthy competition of us all
inspiring each other to push harder, sing better and all that kind of
stuff. The unhealthy part of the competition does not exist on this