Soul Sanctuary Gospel Choir challenges racism with "Courage"

(November 9, 2020 - LONDON) 'Courage’ is a collection of song and word which aims to challenge people of all backgrounds to play their part in dismantling racism and inequality. It was filmed at St James’s Church Piccadilly and released to watch on Youtube on 1st November 2020.

Between carefully chosen songs, ‘Courage’ features conversation between choir members about the events of the summer and how it affected them, and spoken word from poet and rapper Solomon O.B, the Bristol-based activist who is a visible figurehead at the front line of the Black Lives Matter movement there.

(November 9, 2020 - LONDON) 'Courage’ is a collection of song and word which aims to challenge people of all backgrounds to play their part in dismantling racism and inequality. It was filmed at St James’s Church Piccadilly and released to watch on Youtube on 1st November 2020.

Between carefully chosen songs, ‘Courage’ features conversation between choir members about the events of the summer and how it affected them, and spoken word from poet and rapper Solomon O.B, the Bristol-based activist who is a visible figurehead at the front line of the Black Lives Matter movement there.

The opening song, ‘Strange Fruit’, was made famous by Billie Holiday, and profoundly protests against the lynching of Black Americans. Two other songs, ‘Change the World’ and ‘Pain’ are from Snoop Dogg’s 2018 release, ‘Bible of Love’, sung by John Kee and B Slade respectively. John Legend’s call to action ‘If You’re Out There’ and Whitney Houston’s ‘Step by Step’ bring energy and hope that change is possible.

Choir Director Clarence Hunte comments: ‘As an ethnically diverse, yet Black-majority choir, we wanted to respond to the events of the past few months by creating music that would draw attention, with depth and sensitivity to the issues and emotions associated with the fight against racial injustice. Many of us experience racism and we have talked together about the message we wanted to send and the changes we want to see in society.'

The Rector of St James’s Church, Lucy Winkett says: ‘It has been our privilege to work with Soul Sanctuary Gospel Choir for many years now, in our services, at concerts and in broadcasts. We are proud to host this ‘Soul at Saint James’ first event focusing on ‘Courage’. In co-creating this event, we pledge ourselves to do everything we can to confront and dismantle the scourge of racism, knowing that this has to start with the church itself’.

‘Courage’ is the first of a new series of events called Soul at Saint James, a collaboration between Soul Sanctuary Gospel Choir and Saint James’s Church, Piccadilly. For ‘Courage’ they are also partnering with Lyrix Organix.

 

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