Gospel groups from Southland get some glory
For months, church gospel choirs around the U.S. have been preoccupied with the first national "How Sweet the Sound" competition, sponsored by Verizon Wireless to select the "best gospel choir in America." In mid-September, the first of 11 regional semifinals was held in St. Louis. It was followed by events in Atlanta, Newark, Detroit, Philadelphia, Washington, Chicago, Memphis, Houston and, as the Times reported, Oakland.
Well, now the semifinals have ended. The Los Angeles contest took place last night at the L.A. Memorial Sports Arena, where the Christian's Community Center choir from Carson won in the small category and took home $10,000 and the choir from Mt. Rubidoux Seventh Day Adventist Church in Riverside, the overall regional winner, received $10,000 as the victor in the large category and $5,000 as the recipient of the V CAST People's Choice Award.
Next up for the 11 overall regional winners: the finals in Atlanta on Nov. 8. The champs there will receive a grand prize of $25,000. Amen.
-- Craig Fisher
Photo: Sharon Onadele, right, gets help with her tie as she and other members of the Antioch Church Family choir get ready for the "How Sweet the Sound" semifinals in Oakland on Oct. 10.
Photo: Dave Getzschman / For The Times