For more than a quarter of a century, churches throughout the country have been inspired by the words and music of V. Michael McKay. As a well-respected conductor, clinician, speaker, songwriter, and author, McKay has dedicated his life to a greater level of ministry, with a passion to meet the needs of people in the contemporary Christian community.
McKay is a two-time Dove Award winner and a 2000 inductee into the Gospel Hall of Fame. National artists such as Yolanda Adams, Tramaine Hawkins, and Albertina Walker have recorded his songs. McKay's music is published through Schaff Music Publishing and GIA Publications, Inc. His works are also included in a Southern Baptist hymnal supplement, For the Living of These Days and GIA's groundbreaking African American Heritage Hymnal. His articles related to music ministry have been published in Gospel Industry Today magazine.
V. Michael McKay studied music at both Southern University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana and Texas Southern University. He now resides in Houston, Texas.
Pastor & Founder of Pentecostal Life And Praise C.O.G.IC. since 2001, Recording Artist and Founder of New Revelations Singers in Detroit, MI. Musicians, Composer & Song Writer of Perfect Peace (Keith Pringle), Stir Up The Gift (Colorado Mass), Hold On, Never Alone (The Thomas Whitfield Company) Record Producer, New Revelations, The Craig Brothers,Rev. James L. Moore, Min. Kenneth Martin, The Michael Fletcher a Chorale and many others.
Produced/Co-Produced, Written/Arranged, Play On and/or Accompanied ore the 120 recordings. Stellar Award Winning, Grammy Nominated Producer& Productions.
Although not raised in a church-going family, gospel leader Kurt Carr took it upon himself to start attending services at age 13 and soon became active in his church's musical programs. Finding inspiration in albums by gospel greats Walter Hawkins, James Cleveland, and Andrae Crouch, Carr attended the University of Connecticut in his hometown of Hartford, graduating with a degree in fine arts and a newfound appreciation of classical music. He was mentored by the classically trained gospel legend Richard Smallwood, who broadened the young student's horizons to include elements of different musical styles in his compositions and whom Carr still refers to as his "godfather." In 1986, Carr joined with Reverend James Cleveland and his ensemble, acting as pianist and musical director until the reverend's death in 1991.
Together Carr released an album of his compositions and arrangements entitled Together on Light Records in 1991. Starting his own record label, Gospo Centric, in 1992, the energetic musical director led his group, the Kurt Carr Singers, through several albums of contemporary music thoroughly steeped in the traditional sound of gospel including 1994's Serious About It!, 1997's No One Else, and Awesome Wonder in 2000. As well as his own recordings and serving as creative director for the L. A.-based West Angeles Church of God In Christ, Carr has been an active promoter of the acts on his Gospo Centric label, including such industry heavy hitters as Trin-i-tee 5:7, Gospel Gangstas, and Kirk Franklin and the Family.
Dr. Teresa Hairston is a woman of leadership and legacy. She is an Ordained Elder and dynamic preacher and teacher who loves to empower people using Kingdom principles. She is also a Certified (John Maxwell) Coach and Mentor that develops emerging leaders through seminars and one-on-one counseling.
Dr. Hairston is an internationally known and respected pioneer. In 1989, she established Gospel Today Magazine, a publication she launched with an investment of only $300, while working two jobs and being a single (divorced) mother to three young children. Over the 20 plus years of her leadership, Gospel Today grew to become the longest running and most widely-distributed Urban Christian Lifestyle magazine in history. In 2011, she retired from Gospel Today and passed this great legacy to her son.
In 1994, Dr. Hairston founded The Gospel Heritage Foundation, which celebrates and perpetuates the great Gospel legacy –in word and music. Gospel Heritage sees its primary goal as educating worshipers to understand that Worship isn’t just a musical style, it’s a lifestyle. Through Gospel Heritage, Hairston is helping to raise the standard of Biblically-ordained worship in the 21st Century Church. Each year, thousands of people from across the world attend the annual International Worship Summit, which has become the genre’s leading praise & worship gathering.
Dr. Hairston is the author of two nationally distributed books, How to Pursue Your Purpose (2010); and Stop Waiting, Start Winning! Live Your Vision NOW! (2014). Hairston is single, lives in Atlanta and is the doting grandmother of five.