New Music Review: "Close"

Written by Terry DeBoer on . Posted in Local

MarvinSapp Close album cvr-hiGrand Rapids pastor and national gospel music artist Marvin Sapp celebrated the arrival of his 11th solo album with a listening party at his church in his hometown.

Sapp performed some of the songs on the new "Close" CD on Sept. 29 to several hundred fans and friends at Lighthouse Full Life Center Church on Madison Ave. SE.

Normally Sapp would be on a national promotional tour coinciding with his album's release date. But for this project, the Grand Rapids native insisted he have an event right here at home.

The album's title song appeared several months ago and is currently in the top 15 on both Billboard's gospel airplay and gospel singles charts.

The title "Close" is not a verb (like "close" the door), but is a noun referring to proximity, as he explained about the theme.

"The tougher things get, that often means we are closer to God's destiny for our lives," said the artist. "Whatever you may be going through, this song is saying don't stress about it, you are close."

There are several collaborations on the new album. "You and Me Together" features singers Erica Campbell (of the gospel duo Mary Mary) and rapper Izze Williams. "Kind God" was written by gospel superstar Kirk Franklin.

A somewhat controversial note emerged with the song "Listen," in which Sapp teamed with R&B artist R. Kelly. The song was completed before recent abuse allegations surfaced involving Kelly.

Sapp said he and his Verity Records label considered removing the song before the album was released. But Sapp prayerfully decided to go ahead, believing that "the message is greater than the messenger" referring to the song's plea to listen and respond to the voice of God.

Watch Marvin Sapp sing "Close"


Artist: Marvin Sapp
Album: "Close"
Connect:, Twitter: @marvinsapp
Author Information
Terry DeBoer
Terry is journalist who writes for newspapers, magazines, newsletters and websites. His most frequented “beat” is arts and entertainment. He is married with two children and lives in Grand Rapids.

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