Kirk Franklin, Donald Lawrence honored at Stellar Awards

    The Stellar Awards returns for its 26th year to honor the best in gospel music, including Kirk Franklin and Donald Lawrence, who will be receiving special tributes at this year’s ceremony. The show tapes on Saturday, January 15.

    Kirk Franklin, who first gained national notoriety in 1993 when his debut effort Kirk Franklin & the Family became the first gospel album to sell more than 1 million units, will be honored with a special performance.

    Voices of Destiny, the winners of the Verizon “How Sweet the Sound” contest, will pay tribute to Donald Lawrence, whose first solo album, I Speak Life, earned six Stellar Awards. His Finale Act: Part 1 earned seven trophies in 2008.

    Shirley Caesar, Hezekiah Walker and Vickie Winans are among the gospel greats who will be in attendance to present trophies to this year’s winners. Performers include Deitrick Haddon, JJ Hairston and Beverly Crawford as well as Marvin Sapp, who has garnered seven nominations.

    Fred Hammond also received seven nominations, but James Fortune & Fiya leads the pack with eight nods, including Artist of the Year and Song of the Year.

    Check your local listings to find out when the show will air in your area. It is scheduled to run in syndication and will be broadcast on Saturday, March 5 at 8 p.m. EST on the Gospel Music Channel.

    –Tracy L. Scott

    Here’s more:
    Kirk Franklin lays out ‘Blueprint’
    Donnie McClurkin reflects on music and past
    Gospel shares Haiti’s ‘Pain’

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