The Nation’s capital was the place to praise on Wednesday September 12th. Verizon’s How Sweet the Sound rolled into the Verizon Center with the best choirs the region has to offer. Washington DC definitely had the livest crowd so far and the choirs, our judges and hosts matched their energy at every step. After Bishop Hezekiah Walker, backed by The Celebration Choir of Greater Mount Calvary Holy Church rocked “Souled Out” and the judges were introduced, it was time for the main event. The first competing choir to grace the stage was the Gentle Giants Music Ministry directed by Nate Brown, performing “Didn’t My Lord Deliver Daniel.” They started out a jazzy intro before going into an all out technical performance that would rival a Broadway stage play. It was like a musical meets Sunday morning church service. Next up was 100 Men in Black Male Chorus with director Marlon West performing “Let Everything that Hath Breath Praise the Lord.” As Fred Hammond said, he was happy to see 100 men who could sing, and sing they could. Their arrangements were perfect and the spoken word/mini-sermon bridge they added was the icing on the cake. The third choir up was Elder Patrick Riddick and D’Vyne Worship singing “Omnipotent.” They did a good job of mixing old and new styles. They took it to church, especially near the end when the audience got involved. Even Bishop Hezekiah Walker got in on the act saying, “you looked great, you sounded great and you made me want to get up and start dancing.” In between choir performances, CeCe Winans performed her hit “He’s Concerned, before Donald Lawrence encouraged the crowed to “embrace their grace place,” followed by a crowd stirring medley of hits performed by Fred Hammond. Our co-host Yolanda Adams began the second half of the show with her popular song “Be Still.” Harvest Life Changers Church Choir director Lester Harmon kicked off the second half of choir performances singing “It Is Well With My Soul.” The crowd actually started cheering for them well before the lights even hit the choir, their supporters came deep. They moved and sang in unison without flaw, exhibiting stellar grace and power. They also stood out because they were one of the few choirs to feature a soloist. Returning regional winner 4 The Caz of Christ and director Trini L. Massie sang “Lift Him Up.” The Pittsburgh, PA choir had great melodies and symmetry. They got the crowd extra hyped with their big voices and Trini’s energetic direction. Their performance even had a few theatrical elements. The last choir for the evening was Virginia State University Gospel Chorale directed by Perry Evans singing “Search Me Lord.” As the second college choir to perform at HSTS, they had a point to prove and by the end of their performance, they showed and proved. Their performance stood out because they started with a soloist and featured a lot of youthful energy (they even pulled off a couple frat inspired steps). Their band added a lot to the performance with the use of a strong horn section. The tuba player alone gave a true New Orleans feel to the show. Mary Mary’s Erica Campbell brought the house down with a performance of “Yesterday,” before introducing Bishop Hezekiah Walker, who sang “You’re All I Need.” Washington DC got a special treat when local radio personality and gospel recording artist, Lonnie Hunter and his choir hit the stage and sang “I’m Back.” In their first appearance at How Sweet The Sound Virginia State University Chorale took home the Verizon People’s Choice Award for the choir that received the most text votes. The final two choirs that received the two highest vote totals from the judges were Elder Patrick Riddick and D’Vyne Worship and 4 The Caz of Christ. The winner would receive $10,000 and the runner up receives $5000 (each participating choir that does not win an award receives $3000). The Washington D.C. region How Sweet The Sound winner is… 4 The Caz of Christ (they also received the Verizon HopeLine Champion Award). The show ended as always with a huge performance of Donald Lawrence’s hit song “Giants,” featuring all of the talent gathered onstage. It was a great evening overall. Thanks to our sponsors Verizon Wireless and United Healthcare, as well as the great Washington D.C. crowd. It was one of the best How Sweet The Sound shows yet.
On September 10th Verizon’s How Sweet The Sound returned to Atlanta, GA for the fifth consecutive year to a captive audience. There were several notable Gospel figures in the building including Dottie Peoples, VaShawn Mitchell, Taffi Dollar, Joann Rosario and BET Sunday Best winner Joshua Rogers, proviing that Phillips Arena was the place to be on Monday for America’s premier Gospel showcase. As always the audience was treated to performances from our judges and hosts. Bishop Hezekiah Walker and our house choir (Kevin Lemons and Higher Calling) started the festivities off right with a stirring performance of “Souled Out.” Our hosts Donald Lawrence and Yolanda Adams then introduced our esteemed judges who were all happy to be in the beautiful city of Atlanta. The first choir of the evening was Robert Weaver and The Weaver Chorale performing “Do You Know Him.” They kept it traditional with no leads, which the judges felt would have helped their performance. However, their energy was great and they the audience could tell that the choir was enjoying themselves on stage. Their band was also really good. Next up was Voices of Life of the Life Center Church, directed by Elder V. Lamar Wilson. They sang “I’ve Got a Reason” and they sang it with conviction. They immediately impressed with a strong acapella opening and they didn’t let off of the gas from that point on. Both of their soloists wowed with powerful voices. They were clearly a crowd and judge favorite prompting Bishop Hezekiah Walker to proclaim that Voices of Life had his vote. We were honored to have Cedric Sesley and Out for Souls as How Sweet The Sound’s first Community Choir. The Nashville outfit, sang God Wants A Yes.” They set the bar very high for any community choirs to follow, not only with their stage presence and costumes but most importantly with their immensely powerful voices. Judge CeCe Winans did an amazing job of performing her hit single “He’s Concerned,” which warmed the audience up nicely for Fred Hammond a spirit filled performance of his hits medley. Our beautiful co-host Yolanda Adams brought us back from intermission with her hit “Be Still.” Oakwood University gospel choir, Dynamic Praise kicked off the second half of the show with an amazing performance of “Lift the Savior Up.” They are the first college choir to perform at How Sweet The Sound. The Bruce Bean led choir had a lot of Oakwood alumni in the building cheering them on and they did not disappoint. Each section held their own and they exuded a quiet, mellow confidence as judge Fred Hammond put it. The next choir was another local favorite Anointed Voices directed by Micah Meredith. They performed “I Opened My Mouth Unto The Lord.” They really took the crowd to church with various takes on a classic song. This choir can vocally do it all. AV touched the spirit of the judges with their performance. ”You were so precise, the voices were powerful. Puts you in the mind of the old spirituals,” said judge CeCe Winans. The final choir for the evening was last but certainly not least. Atlanta West Pentecostal Church Choir and their director Brandon Frazier are former HSTS champions. It was clear that the crowd was ready to jump on their feet as soon as AWPC hit the stage. Their performance of “Let Everything That Hath Breath” was something to behold. They returned better than before. Their performance was just about perfect. Before the winners were announced, the Phillip’s crowd were blessed with two more performances. Mary Mary’s Erica Campbell donned the stage in her beautiful gown and sang Walter Hawkins’ classic record changed. Bishop Walker followed her with Higher Calling to perform his hit “You’re All I Need.” After awarding Anointed Voices with the Verizon HopeLine award for most phones donated to the program, our judges announced the winner of the Verizon People’s Choice Award. The choir that received the most text votes was crowd favorite Atlanta West Pentecostal Church Choir. As the winner, they received a $5000 check. Next up, Yolanda and Donald asked Cedric Sesley and Out for Souls to the stage to join AWPC as the top vote getters of the night. The place was electric in anticipation of the regional champion. And the winner was… Returning champions AWPC. They won another $10,000 and will go on to represent the Atlanta region at the How Sweet The Sound finale in Brooklyn, NY at the Barclay’s Center on November 4th. The night concluded with all of the talent joining on stage to perform Donald Lawrence’s “Giants.” A great time was had by all. Thanks so much to our wonderful sponsors, Verizon and United Healthcare, as well as the choirs and most of all the people who supported by coming to the show. We love you Atlanta!
Thursday, September 6th, 2012, Verizon’s How Sweet The Sound Gospel Celebration kicked off at the Verizon Theatre at Grand Prairie in the Dallas/Fort Worth metropolitan area. Thanks to the great people of the DFW area alongside our esteemed hosts and judges and wonderful corporate sponsors Verizon and United Healthcare, the event was a resounding success. We were blessed with six of the best choirs that the region has to offer, including two returning regional winners from past years and they all did a great job. Bishop Hezekiah Walker and DFW house choir Divinely Chosen began the evening on an uplifting note with a performance of his hit single “Souled Out.” After Bishop Walker got the crowd on their feet, our hosts Donald Lawrence and Yolanda Adams welcomed the audience to the fifth annual How Sweet The Sound Gospel Celebration. The DFW audience shows their excitement and support as CeCe Winans, Erica Campbell (of Mary Mary), Fred Hammond and Bishop Hezekiah Walker are introduced. They are clearly happy to bear witness to the premier gospel event in America. The first choir to perform was Selah, directed by Titus Glenn. The small but powerful choir sang “Awesome God and thanks to their soloist, good choir direction and a unique interpretation of the song, they bounced back from a shaky start to win the crowd over. The judges were impressed by their surprising power. Next up was Marquinn Middleton & The Miracle Chorale singing “Great Is Thy Faithfulness.” This choir set the bar early with their intricate arrangements and choreography. Middleton and The Miracle Chorale was the first choir of the evening to get a standing ovation. They made the song their own, even prompting former HSTS host CeCe Winans to proclaim that she had “never heard Great is thy faithfulness quite like that before.” Carnell Davis and Incorporated to Praise went up next and sang, “Lift the Savior Up.” The choir sang the song very well. Their movements were unique and precise as well. Their overall performance was awesome but the judges felt that for some reason it did not connect with the crowd. DFW was then treated to a CeCe Winans performance of “He’s Concerned.” Her voice was absolutely flawless as always. How Sweet The Sound fans should be familiar with Donald Lawrence’s knowledge of the word, as he has been the host for five years running and he never hesitates to sprinkle in some ministry along with the inspiring songs. This year was no different, as he instructed the audience to operate in their area of gifts/grace. Local favorite followed Lawrence’s mini-sermon with a medley of his many hits. Hammond, being a gospel great and DFW resident was of course received well. He ran through his biggest songs as the crowd sang along so well that it sounded as if Fred and company had a few thousand extra choir members. Just when we thought it could not get any better, HSTS co-host Yolanda Adams comes to the stage to perform her hit single “Be Still.” The choir portion of the evening reconvened with returning regional winner St. Mark Sanctuary Choir, who sang “The Worship Medley.” Their performance was truly special. The 70+ strong choir proved that their is indeed strength in numbers. The choir had the entire audience, including judge Erica Campbell on their collective feet. They raised the bar once again on a night that already had great performances. “I love a choir that can remind me of the goodness of the Lord, I feel so much anointed right now,” said Bishop Hezekiah Walker. God’s Tabernacle of Deliverance Bishop’s Choir had a hard act to follow but they came out and represented well. The Desoto, TX choir, directed by Ivan Pickles sand “God Wants a Yes,” and they took the crowd to church. They had a lot of intricate movements but they never lost connection to the music, providing one of the tightest performances of the night. The final choir was local favorite St. John Church Music Choir. The returning regional winners put on an uplifting performance of “Search Me Lord.” They did not disappoint their local supporters and they definitely won over some new ones with their showmanship and pure singing. Before the winners were announced, Mary Mary’s own Erica Campbell hit the stage for a resounding performance of Walter Hawkins classic “Changed.” Bishop Walker followed her up with the hit song “You’re All I Need.” Finally we arrived at the moment everyone had been waiting for…the winner of the Verizon People’s Choice Award (decided by in-house text voting) was local fan favorite St. John Church Music Ministry. They were awarded with a check for $5000 for winning the award. St John also won the HopeLine award for donating the most cell phones of any participating choir. Hosts, Donald Lawrence and Yolanda Adams, then invited St. Mark Sanctuary Choir and St. John’s Church Music Ministry to the stage as the two top vote getters of the night to announce the winner and runner up. The grand prizewinner for the 2012 How Sweet The Sound Dallas regional is Arkansas’ own, St. Mark Sanctuary Choir. After the winners were announced, all of the talent joined onstage with Donald Lawrence to sing his song “Giants.” We would like to thank Dallas for an uplifting evening of praise. Next stop is Atlanta on Monday, September 10th at Phillips Arena. Get your tickets here.
How Sweet the Sound 2012 Ticket Sweepstakes Official Rules NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. A PURCHASE WILL NOT INCREASE YOUR CHANCES OF WINNING. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED. The How Sweet the Sound 2012 Ticket Sweepstakes (“Sweepstakes”) begins on or about September 5, 2012 at 12:01:01 a.m. Eastern Time (“ET”) and ends at 11:59:59 p.m. ET on November 2, 2012 (“Sweepstakes Period”). The Sweepstakes Period shall be divided into eight (8) entry periods (each, an “Entry Period”). The Sweepstakes is intended for viewing and participation only within the 50 United States and the District of Columbia and shall be governed by U.S. law. ELIGIBILITY: Sweepstakes is open only to legal residents of the Eligible Areas (as defined herein) set forth in the chart below, who are at least 18 years of age at time of entry. In order to be eligible to enter the Sweepstakes during any Entry Period, Entrants must reside within 60 (sixty) miles of the Designated City for that Entry Period (the “Eligible Area”). Employees, officers and directors, their immediate family members (spouse, siblings, children and parents, regardless of where they live) or members of the same households (whether related or not) of Momentum Worldwide the “Sponsor”), its parent, affiliates, subsidiaries, printers, advertising and promotion agencies and any and all companies associated with the development, distribution or implementation of this Sweepstakes are not eligible to participate.
HOW TO ENTER:
To participate in the Sweepstakes, you must have a Twitter® account and ”follow” @hstscelebration on Twitter® If you are a first-time visitor to Twitter®, you will be prompted to complete the on-screen registration form. Registration is a one-time requirement. If you are a returning visitor, you will be prompted to log in using your email address. Standard data rates may apply to mobile devices.
Once you “follow” @hstscelebration on Twitter®, during the Entry Periods (listed in the cart below) you must submit a Tweet® via Twitter® of one hundred forty (140) characters or less explaining your favorite How Sweet the Sound moment (“Entry”). Entry must include the hashtag “#HSTS2012.” The hashtag characters shall count towards the Entry character limit. Limit one (1) Entry per person/Twitter® account per Entry Period. Entries must be received by the Sponsor within the Entry Period to be eligible for the corresponding Sweepstakes drawing. Multiple entrants are not permitted to share the same Twitter® account.
Entries are void if obtained outside authorized legitimate channels or otherwise not in compliance with these Official Rules. In the event of a dispute over the identity of an entrant, the entrant will be the registered owner of the Twitter® account.
DRAWING: Independent judges (“Judges”), hired by the Sponsor as Sweepstakes Administrators, will select four (4) potential winners in a random drawing from among all eligible entries received during each Entry Period. Non-winning Entries will not be carried over into subsequent Entry Periods. Entry Tweet® content (aside from character limitations and prohibited content) shall not affect odds of winning. Potential winners will be notified by the Sponsor via a direct Twitter® message from @hstscelebration to the potential winner’s Twitter® account used to enter the Sweepstakes with instructions on how to claim the prize. In order to receive a direct message from Sponsor, Entrant must (a) currently “follow” @hstscelebration on Twitter® and (b) have his or her Twitter® account settings set to “unprotected” and/or “public.” If the potential winners cannot be reached within 24 hours, if prize notification is returned as undeliverable, if he/she is found to be ineligible, or if he/she cannot or does not comply with these Official Rules, such person will be disqualified and an alternate potential winner may be selected via random drawing. Judges’ decisions are final and binding on all participants. The potential winners must meet all eligibility requirements set forth in these rules to qualify for a prize. Limit one (1) prize per person during the entire Sweepstakes Period.
Odds of winning a prize depend upon the number of eligible Entries received during each Entry Period.
Thirty-two (32) Prizes will be awarded. The thirty-two (32) Prize winners will each receive two (2) tickets to a How Sweet the Sound concert. See Prize Chart below for details on locations. Winner is responsible for all associated fees,costs or expenses not specifically listed herein. The approximate retail value (“ARV”) of each Prize is $40.00.
TERMS AND CONDITIONS APPLICABLE TO PRIZES:
All properly claimed prizes will be awarded provided a sufficient number of eligible Entries are received, but in no event will Sponsor award more prizes than are provided for in these Official Rules. Prizes are non-transferable except at Sponsor’s sole discretion. No substitutions or cash redemptions except at Sponsor’s sole discretion, in which case a prize of equal or greater value will be awarded. All federal, state and local taxes and any other unspecified expenses associated with acceptance or use of prize are the responsibility of the winners. Entries deemed obscene, defamatory, or infringing will be disqualified at Sponsor’s sole discretion. By submitting an Entry, entrant represents and warrants that the Entry submitted is the original creation of the entrant, does not violate or infringe any copyright, trademark, or other proprietary rights or privacy right of any person or entity, does not defame any individual or entity and is the exclusive property of the entrant. Entrants agree to indemnify, defend and hold Sponsor harmless against any and all liabilities, losses, damages, claims, debts, investigations, fines, penalties, costs, expenses and settlements (including attorneys’ fees and costs of litigation, settlement, judgment, interest and penalties) arising out of or related to a breach of the foregoing representations and warranties. Sponsor reserves the right to reject any Entry which, in its sole and absolute discretion, is determined violate these requirements.
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CONDITIONS: All Entries become the property of the Sponsor and may be used by Sponsor, its affiliated companies and their agents, successors, and assigns, and anyone authorized by them, for any purpose and in any media whatsoever, whether or not now known, throughout the universe in perpetuity, without further compensation to entrant. By entering, participants consent to the use of their name, likeness, biographical information and voice in advertising worldwide without compensation except where prohibited by law. Submitted Entries will not be acknowledged or returned, and no correspondence thereafter will be entered into by Sponsor with Entrant. Any Entry not in compliance with these Official Rules, or made via robotic, automated, mechanical, macro, programmed or like method will void all such Entries and disqualify any Entrant using such methods. Sponsor reserves the right to disqualify any person found or suspected of tampering with the Entry process or the operation of this Sweepstakes, to be acting in violation of these Official Rules, to be acting in a non-sportsmanlike or disruptive manner, or with intent to annoy, abuse, threaten or harass any other person. If, for any reason, the Sweepstakes is not capable of running as planned by reason of, but not limited to, tampering, unauthorized intervention, fraud, technical failures or any other causes which Sponsor deems could corrupt or affect the administration, security, fairness or proper conduct of this Sweepstakes, Sponsor reserves the right at it sole discretion to cancel, modify, suspend or terminate the Sweepstakes and select the winners from among all eligible Entries received prior to the action, or as otherwise may be deemed fair and equitable by Sponsor. Sponsor will post notice of any such action at www.twitter.com. Any attempt by an entrant to deliberately undermine the legitimate operation of this Sweepstakes is a violation of criminal and civil laws. Should such an attempt be made, Sponsor reserves the right to seek damages from any such individual to the fullest extent permitted by applicable law.
LIMITATIONS OF LIABILITY: By participating in this Sweepstakes, Entrants agree to release and hold harmless Sponsor, Twitter®, their respective affiliated companies, subsidiaries, printers, advertising and promotion agencies and each of their respective employees, officers, directors, representatives and agents (collectively, the “Releasees”) from any and all liability for any injuries, losses or damages of any kind to persons, including death, or property arising in whole or in part, directly or indirectly, from acceptance, use or misuse of a prize, participation, or inability to participate in Sweepstakes or any Sweepstakes-related activity. Releasees are not responsible for misdirected, incomplete, damaged or garbled Entries, the Release Forms, or any other documents. Releasees are not responsible for any: (a) telephone, computer, mobile device, hardware, software, programming or interrupted or unavailable network, server or other connections, network malfunction, or other technical failures or errors, or failure to properly process Entries; (b) communication disruption or other forces beyond the reasonable control of the Sponsor, including inability to access Twitter®, submit Entries or other disruption related to Internet traffic, virus, bug, or nonauthorized intervention; (c) damage caused by computer virus or otherwise resulting to any computer from entrant’s access of Twitter®, whether human, mechanical or electronic; or (d) incorrect or inaccurate information whether caused by Twitter® or by any of the programming or equipment associated with or used in the Sweepstakes. Proof of submitting information to Twitter® is not considered proof of delivery or receipt.
Releasees shall not be liable to any winner or any other person for failure to supply a prize or any part thereof, by reason of any acts of God; any action(s), regulation(s), order(s) or request(s) by any governmental or quasi-governmental entities (whether or not they prove to be valid); equipment failure; terrorist acts; earthquake; fire; flood; war; explosion; unusually sever weather; hurricane; embargo; labor dispute or strike (whether legal or illegal); labor or material shortage; transportation interruption of any kind; work slow-down; civil disturbance; insurrection; riot; or any other cause beyond Sponsor’s sole control. Releasees shall not be liable to any winner or any other person for damage to such person’s computer, mobile device, or its contents.
WINNERS LIST: To receive a list of winners, send a self-addressed, stamped envelope before November 15 to: How Sweet the Sound Twitter Contest Winners, Attn: Momentum Compliance, 7930 Clayton Road, Suite 400, St. Louis, MO 63117.
Momentum Worldwide, 250 Hudson Street, 2nd Floor, New York, NY 10013
|Entry Period||Designated City (Eligible entrants must reside within 60 (sixty) miles)|
|4||Newark, New Jersey|
|7||Los Angeles, California|
|8||Brooklyn, New York|
|Entry Period||Start Time & Date||End Time & Date||Drawing on or about|
|1||9/5/12 at 12:01:01 a.m. ET||9/5/12 at 06:59:59 p.m. ET||9/5/12 at 8:00:00 p.m. ET|
|2||9/6/12 at 12:01:01 a.m. ET||9/8/12 at 11:59:59 p.m. ET||9/9/12|
|3||9/9/12 at 12:01:01 p.m. ET||9/10/12 at 11:59:59 p.m. ET||9/11/12|
|4||9/11/12 at 12:01:01 p.m. ET||9/11/12 at 11:59:59 p.m. ET||9/12/12|
|5||9/12/12 at 12:01:01 p.m. ET||9/13/12 at 11:59:59 p.m. ET||9/14/12|
|6||9/14/12 at 12:01:01 p.m. ET||9/15/12 at 11:59:59 p.m. ET||9/16/12|
|7||9/16/12 at 12:01:01 p.m. ET||9/19/12 at 11:59:59 p.m. ET||9/20/12|
|8||10/30/12 at 12:01:01 p.m. ET||11/2/12 at 11:59:59 p.m. ET||11/3/12|
|Entry Period||Concert location|
|4||Newark, New Jersey|
|7||Los Angeles, California|
|8||Brooklyn, New York|
The kickoff for Verizon’s How Sweet The Sound Gospel Celebration is right around the corner. This year, GRAMMY® award-winning, songwriter, producer, arranger and music director Donald Lawrence returns as host and is joined by GRAMMY® award-winning entertainer, producer, author and syndicated radio host Yolanda Adams. Erica Campbell of Mary Mary, Fred Hammond, Hezekiah Walker and CeCe Winans will serve as judges and perform on stage, alongside Lawrence and Adams. The choirs and stage presentation will be at an all-time high. Do not miss out on the premier gospel event in America. Get your tickets today online at www.ticketmaster.com or via phone at (800) 745-3000.