Grammy Award winning producer, composer and recording artist Donald Lawrence and his dynamic support ensemble, Co., return to retail shelves with a brilliant new CD entitled, YRM: Your Righteous Mind (Verity Gospel Music Group/ Quiet Water), on August 9, 2011. Over the last two decades, the innovative artist has dazzled audiences as the front man for the now retired Tri-City Singers while carrying on a solo career that has produced radio hits such as the #1 smash “Back II Eden” and “Healed.”
On the new masterwork, YRM, Lawrence blends the classicism of traditional gospel music and retro soul grooves with uplifting, messages of self-affirmation and practical exercises of faith. “Spiritual,” a bass heavy old school soul-styled groove is currently #17 on Billboard’s Hot Gospel Songs chart. Among the collection’s highlights are the upbeat mantra “YRM (Your Righteous Mind)” featuring Dorinda Clark Cole, the smooth “We Agree” with Israel Houghton, The “I Am” Factor sermonette by Zimbabwe’s charismatic Bishop Tudor Bismark, siblings Tobbi White Darks and Tommi White’s rousing makeover of Chaka Khan’s 1984 hit “Through The Fire” and a spirited update of Lawrence’s mentor – the late Bishop Walter Hawkins’ 1984 gem “When The Battle Is Over.” The set is a continuum of what he’s been preaching for years. “This project really doesn’t differ from my past ones,” he says. “I want to continue to teach, through song, spiritual principles and laws based on scriptures.”
Lawrence is scheduled for several high-profile appearances to promote YRM. He and Co. are doing in-store appearances such as J&R in New York City on Friday, August 12th and a Dallas performance at Bishop T.D. Jakes’ Manpower conference on the 13th. They will be joined by some special guest artists for a full concert Sunday, August 14th @ 3:00 p.m. on the main stage during Central Park’s Summer Stage concert series. Aside from forthcoming print stories and CD reviews, Lawrence will make high-profile appearances on BET’s flagship gospel television program, “Bobby Jones Gospel” and a special episode of TV One’s “One on One with Cathy Hughes.” There’s also a Sirius XM Satellite Radio in-studio concert in the works for the Praise Channel 64.
The Chicago based artist began his career as a music director for R&B legend Stephanie Mills and vocal coach for En Vogue. Then, in the mid 1990s he made headlines as the leader of the Grammy-nominated Tri-City Singers choir that enjoyed a dozen radio hits such as “The Blessing of Abraham,” “The Best Is Yet To Come” and “Encourage Yourself.” In 2004, Lawrence launched a solo career that has included signature songs such as “Back II Eden” and “Healed.” Since 2007, Lawrence has served as spokesman for Verizon Wireless’ How Sweet The Sound national gospel choir talent competition.