First Listen: A 3rd Generation Winans member sings of justice

Photo courtesy of Gwendolyn Quinn Public Relations  

(November 17, 2020) Born in one of the most influential families of Detroit gospel, singer and songwriter Juan Winans, who made his mark in the urban contemporary gospel group Winans Phase 2, is “now” living up to the legacy of his family surname. On the timely new single “NOW,” Winans is putting the spotlight on the urgency of our political climate and the need to rise up for change.

I wrote ‘NOW’ as a clarion call to all who seek to act on their convictions, that we are at a moment of necessary action,” Winans says. “It is not enough to believe others should or will speak for any of us who wish to have our voices heard and our fundamental rights honored. Individuals must speak now, must act now, must vote now to contribute to a lasting collective good.” 

(November 17, 2020) Born in one of the most influential families of Detroit gospel, singer and songwriter Juan Winans, who made his mark in the urban contemporary gospel group Winans Phase 2, is “now” living up to the legacy of his family surname. On the timely new single “NOW,” Winans is putting the spotlight on the urgency of our political climate and the need to rise up for change.

I wrote ‘NOW’ as a clarion call to all who seek to act on their convictions, that we are at a moment of necessary action,” Winans says. “It is not enough to believe others should or will speak for any of us who wish to have our voices heard and our fundamental rights honored. Individuals must speak now, must act now, must vote now to contribute to a lasting collective good.” 

To go along with the powerful message, Winans neatly blends the oratory excellence of the late Rep. John Lewis into the performance. “We do not want our freedom gradually, but we want our freedom now,” Lewis can be heard with a Baptist preacher eloquence. Taken from excerpts from John Lewis’s 1963 speech at the historic March on Washington, the prophetic grit of Lewis’s command alongside Winans’ heartfelt crooning and the symphony of piano strings, ushers this inspirational ballad to the top of the short list of this year’s poignant message songs. “We must pick up the mantle of leaders who preceded and fought for us, and continue their leadership,” Winans says in response to using Lewis’s powerful words for his song.

Many popular and contemporary gospel artists avoid jumping into the political fires or branding themselves to a political party, fearing the alienation of their fans. But only weeks away from the 2020 National election and with the revival fires burning like a Staple Singers offering and using a smooth P.J. Morton-esque soul appeal, Winans makes his voice abundantly clear about which side he’s leaning on. He debuted the self-penned song to the masses during “GOTV L!VE: A Soul of the Nation Gospel Concert Special,” a televised “get out the vote” all-star campaign event for President-Elect Joe Biden and hosted by actress Meaghan Good. Remarkably, this bold leap of faith may have helped score a major win for Democrats in Winans’ home state of Michigan and even in Georgia, the home state of the late John Lewis. Both flipped blue after election.

Check out the moving single and let us know if you’re inspired.

By J Matthew Cobb

Juan Winans - "NOW"
 

Leave a comment!