Commissioned reunion tour brings legendary group back together

(September 26, 2019) Nearly 15 years after they last toured, the members of the legendary Gospel group Commissioned are back together and are performing around the U.S. The group, consisting of Fred Hammond, Marvin Sapp,  Keith Staten, Mitch Jones, Karl Reid, Michael Brooks, and Michael Williams. Both together and as individual artists, the members of Commissioned have left a huge imprint on popular music.

(September 26, 2019) Nearly 15 years after they last toured, the members of the legendary Gospel group Commissioned are back together and are performing around the U.S. The group, consisting of Fred Hammond, Marvin Sapp,  Keith Staten, Mitch Jones, Karl Reid, Michael Brooks, and Michael Williams. Both together and as individual artists, the members of Commissioned have left a huge imprint on popular music.

The group was formed in 1982, and was noted for fusing the soaring vocals and tight harmonies that had been a feature of gospel quartet singing for years with R&B-influenced instrumentals. Hammond, one of the founders of the group, learned much about how to fuse the sound without sacrificing the message from his work as a musician with The Winans and from the R&B on the radio at the time. This should not be surprising because secular and sacred music have always been linked. And the group's name probably gives a hint to its philosophy. Commissioned takes its name from Christ's command - or the great commission - to take the gospel to the world. Commissioned's music reaches out to the youth. As Reid said in a recent interview, nobody was making youth oriented gospel in 1985 when the band dropped the debut album I'm Going On. The Commissioned style came forth on that album in tracks such as "I'm Going On" and "You've Got A Friend." A live version of both songs is featured on The Essential Commissioned.

Clearly, fusing spiritual music with secular genres has long been a subject of debate in gospel music, going back to the days when a blues musician named Thomas Dorsey started penning gospel songs such as "Precious Lord Take My Hand." Those debates were pitched during the 1980s when Commissioned came on the scene. Commissioned managed to overcome the resistance by never playing down their music's Christ-centered message. That, in turn, made it possible for today's praise teams, choirs and gospel rappers to use popular music to while making ever-stronger statements about their love of Christ.

We're excited to have Commissioned back.

Click here to check out their touring schedule.

 
World Premiere - Chris Jasper - "For The Love of You"
Album of the Month - Jeffrey Dennis - "Lovin On You"
Featured Album - Leon Ware - "Rainbow Deux"

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