*BeBe Winans has never cared what people — including the church — thought about him or his artistry.
“I was never afraid — and to this day, I’m never afraid to try something new or to go where I believe I need to go,” Winans told me when I sat down with him recently. “I’ve never been afraid of what people thought. I’ve never been driven by success. I enjoy it, but that’s not my driving force. I need to tell the story of where I am.”
Winans’ story is quite the page-turner. His family is a dynasty of sorts within the gospel music community. Four of his older brothers formed the legendary group The Winans and quickly moved from the Detroit music scene to the national stage with 1981’s landmark “The Question Is.”
BeBe followed a few years later, with a cover of a song from the soundtrack of the feature film An Officer And A Gentleman, “Up Where We Belong” by Joe Cocker and Jennifer Warnes. Winans and his sister CeCe transformed the pop romantic ballad into a stirring plea to our Father that foretold their amazing musical ministry.
A couple of years later, BeBe & CeCe released the first of a series of slickly produced, genre-defying albums — BeBe & CeCe Winans, Heaven, Different Lifestyles, First Christmas, and Relationships — that featured singles that topped both the gospel and R & B charts, at a time when that type of cross-over success was frowned upon by the church.
Feature continues (with some really nice photos) at EURThisNthat.