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Bishop Walter Hawkins 1949 – 2010

July 12, 2010

Home Going Celebration Details for Bishop Walter Hawkins

Who’s Who in Gospel Music to Celebrate the Life of Grammy Winner Bishop Walter Hawkins with A-List Cncert at the Paramount Theater
Tuesday, July 20, 2010 at 7 p.m. PST
Musical Celebration Features Yolanda Adams, Mary Mary and Bebe Winans

Funeral: Wednesday, July 21, 2010 at 11 a.m. PST At The Paramount Theater

In Oakland, Calif. a who’s who of the gospel world is gathering to pay final respects to Grammy Award-winning gospel legend, Bishop Walter Hawkins, who passed away July 11 after a two-year battle with pancreatic cancer.

On Tuesday, July 20, some of the biggest names in gospel music will congregate at The Paramount Theater for a musical salute to Walter Hawkins who is known for his classic gospel songs such as “Goin’ Up Yonder,” “Marvelous,” and “What is This?” The musical celebration is titled, The Man, the Music, The Ministry: A Musical Salute to Bishop Walter Hawkins.”

Among the stars confirmed to sing Hawkins’ evergreen compositions are platinum artists such as Yolanda Adams, Mary Mary, and Donnie McClurkin. Also performing is Hawkins’ sister, Lynnette Hawkins, R&B artist Ledisi, Karen Clark Sheard, Daryl Coley, Vanessa Bell Armstrong, Byron Cage, Melvin & Doug Williams of The Williams Brothers, guitarist Jonathan DuBose Jr., D.J. Rogers, and The Love Center Choir.

Making a special appearance will be Hawkins’ longtime vocal muse and former wife, Lady Tramaine Hawkins, whose dramatic vocals were featured on Walter Hawkins masterpieces such as “Changed,” “Goin’ Up Yonder,” and “He’s That Kind of Friend.”

The music directors for the evening will include Hawkin’’s brother, Edwin Hawkins, Donald Lawrence, Kurt Carr, Richard Smallwood, and Hawkins’ longtime music director, Rusty Watson. The masters of ceremonies duties will be shared by Bebe Winans, Marvin Winans, and Black Entertainment Television (BET) personality, Dr. Bobby Jones.

The concert takes place Tuesday, July 20, 2010 at 7 p.m. at the Paramount Theater, 2025 Broadway, Oakland, Calif., 94612-2303. Tickets are free and available on a first come, first served basis.

The funeral will take place the following morning, Wednesday, July 21, 2010 at 11 am at the Paramount Theater. Bishop Kenneth Moales (of Prayer Tabernacle Church of Love, Inc. in Bridgeport, CT) will officiate at the ceremony.

Instead of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to The Walter Hawkins Memorial Foundation. Cards, letters and donations may be mailed to: Love Center Ministries, 10440 International Blvd, Oakland, Calif., 94603.

————

Legendary Gospel musician Bishop Walter Hawkins died yesterday following a battle with cancer. The following comments came to us from Michael Steven Moore of the Memphis Gospel Alliance and author of our weekly newsletter column, Gospel Corner.

It seems like just the other day that Bishop Walter Hawkins was here in Memphis recording at Temple Of Deliverance COGIC on the tribute to the Late Bishop G.E. Patterson CD. Yesterday, we lost another giant. Though there aren’t many details at this time, by 7 p.m. Sunday, his Wikipedia bio already reflected his passing.

And it now reads:

Walter Hawkins (May 18, 1949 — July 11, 2010) was an American gospel music singer. Born in Oakland, California, he was one of gospel music’s most legendary figures. Bishop Walter Hawkins was one of the most beloved pastors and figures in contemporary Gospel Music today. In the Forty plus years of his career, he has created one of the most prolific and outstanding catalogs of hit gospel recordings and published songs. It was recently announced on the Facebook profile page of Pastor Shirley Caeser, another Gospel legend, that Bishop Walter Hawkins passed away on Sunday, July 11, 2010.

Walter was the brother of gospel singer Edwin Hawkins and Lynette Hawkins-Stephens. While married to Tramaine Hawkins, the couple had two children a son, Walter “Jamie” Hawkins, Jr. and a daughter, Trystan Hawkins with one granddaughter, Jahve Hawkins and one grandson, Jamie Daniel Hawkins. Walter “Jamie” Hawkins, Jr. is married to Myiia “Sunny” Davis-Hawkins. Hawkins started his career in one of his brother’s chorale, “The Northern California State Youth Choir” of the Church of God in Christ. Later on he accompanied his brother and made significant contributions to his career with the founding of The Edwin Hawkins Singers. This collaborative effort produced the hit song, “Oh Happy Day” which became one of the first gospel songs to crossover onto mainstream music charts.

Walter left the group in the early ’70s to establish the Love Center Church in Oakland, Calif. He and his Love Center Choir had considerable success with his Love Alive series, which collectively sold more than a million copies from the ’70s through the ’90s. Recordings and published songs that include such great hits as “”Marvelous,” “Going Up Yonder,” “Changed,” “Be Grateful,” “Thank You,” “He’s That Kind Of Friend,” “”Until I Found The Lord, “Jesus Christ Is the Way,” “Im Not The Same,” “Holy One,” “Spirit Now,” “Battle,” “I Love You Lord,” … and so many more.

Update July 13:

As a part of The Gospel Music Celebration Pt. 1 Tribute To Bishop G. E. Patterson, recording artists and Memphians  Stephanie Bolton and Shontelle Norman got the opportunity to share the stage and mic with Bishop Walter Hawkins on the remake of his iconic hit “What Is This?” They both went on to become part of his touring group.

Stephanie shares a heartfelt comment:

“Bishop Walter Hawkins was my Father and Friend.  I will miss the laughter at Love Fellowship in rehearsals, and the wonderful time we had at the house.

I know God is glad to see you, and you are resting in his arms.  Bishop I love you and miss you dearly.  I thank God for the chance to meet you and fall in love with your spirit. Many have come and gone, but this mans legacy will live on Forever.  God blessed this man with a voice that echoes around the world. I know heaven is having a (Oh Happy Day).”

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