Lovers of Gospel choirs have been lamenting recently with the absence of choirs on Gospel radio. Believing that the backbone of the musical church experience is the choir, Gospel recording artist and producer Zak Williams is helping to bring choirs back with his event, Choir Storm Live. He will be presenting Choir Storm Live on Saturday, March 12th at 6PM at Bibleway Temple (1110 Holmes Street, Raleigh, NC 27601). The free event, hosted by Guest Worship Leader Prophetess Tony A. Verbal, will include dynamic choirs from the Raleigh and Philadelphia areas including Jerry Saddler & Sound of Pentecost, John Fox & New Fellowship, Marshall Troublefield & Called To Worship, Cornell Young & Triumph, Marcel Wyche & Octave Praise, Pastor Donte McCutchen & Levitical Praise, Nick Reynolds & Family Affair and of course, Zak Williams & 1/AKORD. For more information on the event, call 1.800.456.4512 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Choir Storm Live Concert is an offshoot of the Choir Storm Radio Show. The 2-hour program showcases the best in choir music. Hosted by Williams and Henry “Mr. Who Dat” Haley, the show airs every Sunday morning from 8AM – 10AM ET on LookUpRadio.com. Those desiring to listen to the program can also download the Look Up Radio app. The program features classics and contemporary Gospel music from artists such as Thomas Whitfield, Walter Hawkins & The Love Center Choir, Keith Pringle & The Pentecostal Community Choir, Rev. James Cleveland, JJ Hairston & Youthful Praise, Ricky Dillard & New G and a slew of other great artists. There’s also the segment called “Who Dat Choir?” which features choirs that Gospel music fans may not have been introduced to yet.
Williams has always had a special place in his heart for choirs. He says, “I have been a lover of choirs my entire life. As a choir director, I have been concerned about the decline of the choir on radio. At local concerts, I have seen a lot of great choirs, but have noticed there are few outlets for their music to be played. That’s where the vision for Choir Storm came from. I have seen choirs becoming a dying breed and they should not be.” The program features choirs of the past, choirs of today and some choirs that people have not heard yet.
Williams has a long history with choirs. “I grew up at Macedonia Baptist Church and we had 5 choirs,” he says. “The youth choir was thriving and years ago we recorded. That’s what I grew up around. Since I am from Philadelphia, I listened to choirs like the Savettes and the Philadelphia Mass Choir back in the day and truly loved them. I always wanted to have my own choir, write songs for choirs and minister at concerts. That’s always been my passion.”
A renowned choir director, producer and songwriter, Zak Williams started his music career at the age of 5. After attending the Settlement Music School in Philadelphia, he began playing for choirs in the Tri-State area. Later on, he became the organist for the renowned Rev. Ernest Davis Jr.’s Wilmington Chester Mass Choir. Since that time, he’s played with the legends of Gospel including Daryl Coley, Dorothy Norwood, Steven Ford, Dottie Peoples, Deitrick Haddon, Dr. Bobby Jones and many others. As a songwriter, he’s seen success with the song, “There Is No Way’, which was included on Bishop Hezekiah Walker’s Stellar Award Winning project, “Souled Out”. The Wilmington Chester Mass Choir won two Stellar Awards for their CD, “He’s Still Good”, produced by Williams. In 2003, the ensemble 1/AKORD was birthed with gifted singers from the Philadelphia region. After years of singing God’s praises together, opening for the finest in Gospel music and touring with mainstream acts like Trace Atkins and Josh Groban, Zak Williams & 1/AKORD is putting the final touches on a brand new release called “The Next Chapter”. The CD’s lead single, “Wonderful Jesus”, is already hitting the airwaves. Fans of the ensemble should look for the new project this summer. Williams will be juggling his time in music ministry as he was just named the new Musical Director of the Wilmington Chester Mass Choir, a choir that is readying a new project, too. For more information on Choir Storm, check out the Facebook page.