Dorinda Clark Cole
Dorinda Clark Cole
Official Bio (courtesy of Verity Records)
She's been called "the Rose of Gospel," "the church girl," and "evangelist" but more than anything else, three time Grammy award winner Dorinda Clark Cole is a fired up sister for Christ and one of the most gifted vocalists in the music world today.
The second from the youngest of The Clark Sisters, Dorinda attributes her fiery, convicting singing style to her mother, who saw the gift of singing and preaching in her at an early age. Back in the 1960's and 70's when other children their age were playing outside, Dorinda and her sisters would have to work on their now famous familial harmonies. She says, "We made a lot of sacrifices. My mom was a stickler for making sure we rehearsed before we went out to perform. If we had an engagement on a Saturday or Sunday, during the week she would call us in and say, â€˜Hey ya'll I need you to come in here and rehearse.' That's when mom started really putting the discipline in us. She would say, â€˜Karen, I want you to take that microphone and sing this note...and now Dorinda, I want you to talk a little bit.' When Karen the youngest turned five we started recording.
She saw the gifts and talents within us and started shaping and molding us. She taught us discipline along with how to use our gifts. We still have those gifts today. It was all in preparation for what we do today as recording artists, writers and producers."
The gift of talking that Dorinda's mother saw in her as a little girl has evolved into a phenomenal preaching ministry that goes hand in hand with her singing ministry. "I can't get around the both of them; I can't leave the stage without saying something...and even when I preach, I can't leave without singing a line of something," she laughs.
Dorinda has been evangelizing and juggling hundreds of speaking engagements annually for over twenty years, along with her singing career and being a wife and mother. And to add to that, she is the new host of TCT Network's Celebrate Music, co-host of TCT's Celebrate on the Road , and is the current spokes model for Donna Vinci Clothing.
However, she hasn't always been at such a joyous place in her life. Dorinda was once a wounded soul who contemplated suicide who now testifies about that very trying time in her life. She remembers, "At that time my mother was not with me to help me get through that rough time. We were always dependent on our mom because she was always there... I didn't understand why it was happening to me...It was very devastating. And it caused me to go into a state of depression...I just couldn't take it anymore and I got into my car and I began to drive to the river. I was about to drive my car off the bridge. And while I was right there...the enemy was speaking to me, so I actually had a war going on...I began to drive and accelerate up to 80 miles per hour. God spoke to me just as plain as day and said, â€˜Dorinda, are you going to let everything that has been invested in you go down the drain?' And when I heard God's voice, I began to take my foot off the accelerator and the car started coasting right to the bridge. And the Lord whispered to me and said, â€˜Peace be unto you.' And that's when I grabbed the steering wheel and I said, Lord I thank you. I began to weep and cry. So if it had not been for God keeping me, right then I would have been doomed and consumed."
Influenced by the preaching style of her mentor and spiritual mom Pastor Shirley Caesar, Dorinda preaches and sings more fearlessly today than ever before about overcoming trials and tribulations, God's goodness and what faith can do. She says, "I want it to reach avenues that we feel that it cannot to go, I want people to not give up and know they can get through it."
I want it to reach those who are strung out on drugs. I want them to be able to hand it over to other drug abusers and say listen to it and have it bless their lives."