Billboard Bits: Gospel HOF, Cnt'l Drifters, and more
News on Gospel Hall Of Fame, Della Reese, Winans, Continental Drifters, Peter Holsapple, New York Underground Film FestivalThe Winans and Della Reese lead a list of 18 acts to be inducted into the Gospel Music Hall Of Fame. The Hall's class of 2001 will be celebrated Oct. 27 at the organization's annual black tie induction banquet in Detroit.
The other inductees are Jean Anderson, Vanessa Bell Armstrong, Senator Bristol Bryant, Donald Vails & the Choraleers, Rev. Charles A. Craig II, Rev. C.L. Franklin, Fred Hammond, evangelist Bertha Harris, Howard Lemon, Lucille Lemon & the Lemon Singers, Mr. Dorgan Needam, Mr. Charles Pennington, Mr. Herbert Pickard, Mr. Larry Robinson, evangelist Esther Smith, and Dr. E'lon Eloni Wilks.
For information on the Gospel Hall Of Fame and tickets, visit the organization's official Web site.
-- Barry A. Jeckell, N.Y.
"Better Day," the next album from the Continental Drifters, will be released May 15 by Razor & Tie. The 12-track album follows the rootsy pop collective's critically acclaimed 1998 set "Vermillion." In anticipation, Razor & Tie will on Tuesday (Feb. 20) issue a newly remixed and remastered edition of the band's 1994 self-titled debut.
An all-star eclectic pop group of sorts, the Continental Drifters formed in 1991 with former Dream Syndicate bassist Mark Walton, drummer Carlo Nuccio (drums), guitarists Ray Ganucheau (guitar) and Gary Eaton, and keyboardist Danny McGough in its ranks.
Through swelling and contraction, and a shift of home base from Los Angeles to New Orleans, the lasting line-up of the band is Walton, drummer Russ Broussard, keyboardist Peter Holsapple (db's), his now-ex wife singer/songwriter Susan Cowsill, guitarist Robert Mache, and bassist Vicki Peterson (Bangles). A summer tour in support of the "Better Day" is in the planning stage.
-- Barry A. Jeckell, N.Y.
A host of music-related films are on tap for the eighth annual New York Underground Film Festival, set for March 7-13 at the city's Anthology Film Archives. Among the features set for screening are "Hill Stomp Holler," a documentary about the Fat Possum Records label; "In The Ocean (Rotterdam Re-Mix)," an exploration of new music ensemble Bang On A Can; and "Punking Out," a vintage documentary about the early New York punk scene.
"Down To The City" is a documentary detailing the relationship between the early days of free jazz and the civil rights movement of the 1960s. The film sports interviews and performances from John Coltrane, David S. Ware, and William Parker. Also showing is "An Incredible Simulation," which spotlights tribute bands to the likes of Neil Diamond, Kiss, Led Zeppelin, and more.