Kirk Franklin appeared on NPR Music’s notable Tiny Desk series yesterday with his band and small choir. Tiny Desk is celebrating Black History Month by featuring four weeks of Tiny Desk in-home concerts and playlists by Black artists from a wide range of genres and generations each week. The lineup includes emerging and established artists who will be performing a Tiny Desk concert for the first time. The celebration continues with the revolutionary of modern day gospel music.
Franklin created his own Tiny Desk vibe alongside his band and choir in a corner of Uncle Jessie’s Kitchen. According to NPR Music, the Arlington, Texas studio, named after a long time close friend, features a large photo of the iconic “I AM A MAN” protest signs from the 1968 Memphis Sanitation Strike on the wall. The joyous and infectious energy that Franklin and his ensemble ensue coupled with the visual reminder of the struggles Black people have endured is indicative of the significance of gospel music in the Black community.
“I know you’re at home right now, in your draws, listening to some Jesus music. It’s ok. Jesus loves you in your draws,” he shouts as he prepares to perform virtually.
Kirk Franklin has dominated and revolutionized the way we view and listen to gospel music for nearly thirty years. The way he created an intersection for secular music, especially hip hop, and traditional Christian music to coexist was a risk many gospel artists before him were never willing to take in fear of how the church might react. Franklin has continued to help spread the message and integrity of traditional gospel music while introducing churchgoers to the elements of rap music.</div>
Franklin and his powerful choir take viewers on a journey through his extensive sixteen Grammy award winning discography of praise and worship while entertaining with a number of jokes throughout his set. The performance includes songs: “Love Theory,” “Silver and Gold,” “Melodies From Heaven,” and “I Smile.”
This performance will certainly have you shouting in your living room. Enjoy the full Tiny Desk in-home performance brought to you by the goat of gospel music, Kirk Franklin and his lovely ensemble.