Winans cut solos, then reunite for tour
October 28, 1999
From Dennis Michael
HOLLYWOOD (CNN) -- Motown has produced some great soul singers, but it's also home to a first family of gospel. Dolores and David Winans, matriarch and patriarch of one of the United States' most successful soul-music clans, now are solo artists. If their names don't ring a bell, it might be because you've heard of them more often as "Mom and Pop."
To members of their large family and to gospel fans worldwide, they're known as Mom and Pop Winans ("WINE-ans"). The nicknames are so much a part of them that they used the names on their albums -- Pop Winans' CD is called "Uncensored," and Mom's is titled "It's Been an Affair To Remember."
"It was fun," says Pop, about recording his first solo effort. "I love the studio. See, she (Dolores) don't like the studio too much, and she likes the music just a certain volume. I like it hot, loud and clear -- I just get into it, I'm the excited type. She's the calm type, you know. So two opposite poles attract."
The "calm type" is no slouch in the backup department, by the way -- Mom is supported on her album by no less an ensemble than the London Symphony Orchestra.
The titles "Mom" and "Pop" aren't just marketing handles. These two are the parents of 10 children, most of whom are working gospel artists -- including headliner solo artists BeBe and CeCe Winans.
"It's amazing to see how God has handed down gifts from generation to generation," says Mom Winans. "Even my grandchildren write songs, play keyboards -- never had lessons."
'Both very talented'
Their children insist that the first generation was the best. "They're both very talented," says daughter CeCe, who released a debut album with brother BeBe, "BeBe & CeCe Winans," in 1987. "We all sing, but it's no secret, they really have the greatest voices out of all of us. And they sing wonderfully together, but the both can definitely stand alone."
Yet the way Mom and Pop Winans see it, they never stand alone, even on their solo albums. As Mom puts it, "The words of the Gospel always seem to reach someone in that audience."
Standing alone isn't going to happen much in the year 2000, either. While some families have reunions, this family is going to tour -- with "everybody," says CeCe. That means a lengthy list that includes her parents, her nephews and both BeBe and CeCe performing as solo artists.
"It's going to be a lot of people on the tour, just getting the whole family in."
New gospel reaching out to next generation
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