Michelle David & The Gospel Sessions
“Music that feeds the heart and soothes the soul” were the words used by Michelle David to describe the new album ‘Michelle David & The Gospel Sessions Vol. 3’. “She deemed 2017 to be the hardest year of her life. Michelle goes on to say: In a short period I lost a few of my loved ones, the greatest being my Mother. More than ever music became a vessel, which I needed in order to move forward. It gave comfort and helped restore my strength. You will certainly hear a message of recovery, hope, inspiration, power and of course love. TGS Volume 1 was an introduction to the project whereas Vol. 2 were stories of the past. This volume is giving you my experiences in real time, as they were unfolding. So, one can assume that this album is the most personal of all”.
The lyrics and message may be the most personal yet the music on Vol. 3 is extremely diverse. Which is quite a contrast to Vol. 1. It was all about the search of Onno Smit and Paul Willemsen to the origins of Gospel Music. Something that was sparked by the love of both men for Soul and Rhythm & Blues music. Upon starting their quest to find the origins of these genres they ended up with the earliest Gospel songs put on record, from the likes of Sister Rosetta Tharpe. This inspired them to write and record songs they often performed with nothing more than a tambourine and an old guitar. Volume 2 already had a more soulful approach, a fuller and more refined sound that started coming up in the early 50’s (eg. Sam Cooke and Bobby Womack). For the new album they have been inspired by the beginning of Funk and Soul. This can be heard by the use of the bass guitar, but definitely also by the addition of horns. On three songs the horn players of ‘The Jakthorns’ can be heard. A group of three who sometimes accompany Michelle David & The Gospel Sessions on stage. They can be heard along side the legendary sax player Benjamin Herman pouring some magic to the Ethiopique inspired “Walk With Me”. More ethnic influences like Afrobeat and Cumbia (just listen to Proverbs 3) can be heard on this album. By adding a percussion player (Bas Bouma) Michelle David & The Gospel Sessions managed to make the sound the most varied to date.
Onno Smit explains: “Vol.1 and 2 to us was a quest and a journey to find the roots of the music we love. This has also enhanced our sound on Vol. 3. We have found it. We have found the voice and sound of our band both live and in the studio. It’s our take on Gospel, wrapped in a blanket of Soul, Blues, Jazz and Afrobeat. It’s a record that will blast from your speakers in Technicolor!”
With this record the band is ready to start conquering abroad. Last year they’ve already played in London and several times in Belgium. Everywhere they’ve played the audience reaction was the same, people dancing, cheering and sharing the message of love.
“And that’s what we want to do all over the globe” says Michelle David. “World, get ready to be GOSPELIZED”.