LIGHTNING RELEASES (12/6/2013) – If there ever was a gospel artist truly walking in her calling to go far beyond the church walls, that would be North Carolina native, three time Grammy Award nominee CYNTHIA JONES, that many call the Erykah Badu of gospel.
I had the privilege of seeing the Neo Soul Gospel Phenom ROCK the stage on November 22 at an Intimate Evening with the Legends of R&B concert, held in Durham NC at the Sheraton Imperial Hotel.
Performing on the show was Keith Washington, Miki Howard, and Howard Hewitt, according to the bill, but there had been a change in plans. Miki Howard was not able to be there due to illness. The audience sighed in disappointment, but the MC said with excitement “but ya’ll are in for an unexpected special treat tonight from another powerful young lady known throughout the country for her style of gospel music”. Did he say gospel at an R&B concert? Yes he did.
Now I gotta tell you, Cynthia has no problem singing in these type settings. Her silky smooth music blends with a message that is very clear who she’s singing about. She has shared the stage with Blues man Bobby Rush, funk group Slave, R&B singer Ginuwine, and jazz trumpeter Tom Browne. She knows that if she’s there, then God has a reason for her attending.
Just before Cynthia took the stage, she stopped in at the artist meet and greet that was given to all of the VIP concert ticket holders. Little did she know, upon introducing her as she entered the room, her fans began clapping and came up to hug her and took photos with her, but they had no idea she was going to be one of the artist performing on the show until they made the announcement that the ‘baddest’ Neo Soul Gospel artist on the planet would be performing on the Legends Show, and boy oh boy did she give a show.
Right after Keith Washington finished wooing the ladies, Cynthia Jones was introduced as the next artist to come to the stage. All of a sudden as the music began to play she appeared in the back of the audience with the BIG spot light on her as she walked down the aisle through the crowd singing her signature grand entrance song bearing her name saying “Are You Ready For C.Y.N.T.H.I.A. J.O.N.E.S. Ms. Cynthia Jones. The crowd went crazy as she made her entrance.
Ms. Jones gave a powerful performance taking full command of the stage and audience. Concert goers who were just jamming to R&B music didn’t mind that they were being entertained by the Award winning Neo Soul Gospel artist as she shared the GOOD NEWS. In fact they were participating and feeling the warm vibes, illuminating the room with a sea of waving cell phone lights that resembled the flickering flames from a sea of cigarette lighters at a Woodstock concert.
The Queen of Neo Soul Gospel did a 30 minute set, and after leaving the stage both old and new fans were lined up at her merchandise table waiting to purchase her CD, take photos with her, and to get autographs. One excited red head fan in particular said to Cynthia, “I listen to you every day on Pandora. I can’t believe you’re here. I can’t believe I got a chance to see you in person”.
Another excited new fan from Las Vegas said, “They need Cynthia Jones in Vegas”. She said she had never heard gospel like that before and was glad she came to the show.
It only took a few minutes before photos of Cynthia Jones were posted on Facebook with comments saying; “You ROCK! You did your thing, I am proud of you”.
Cynthia loves and appreciates all of her fans, but when it comes to performing at venues that are not in church or gospel settings, it really makes her feel good to know that people from all walks of life, particularly the Jazz and Soul music enthusiast, love the Neo Soul Gospel music of Cynthia Jones.
When you get a chance, make sure you pick up a copy of Cynthia’s current release “Journey of Soul” available on ITunes, Amazon, Best Buys and other online stores. You can also hear this skillful writer’s songs on Shekinah Glory Ministry’s “Refreshed By Fire”, Maranatha Music’s Top 25 Gospel Songs 2013 produced by Percy Bady and Ben Tankard’s recent release “Full Tank”.