Gospel Roots of Rock & Soul

Saturdays in September, 6 PM CT on High Plains Public Radio
  • Hosted by CeCe Winans

Without gospel music there never would have been an Elvis Presley. There never would have been a Ray Charles, or a James Brown. From the mid-twentieth century on, gospel music not only thrived within a separate sphere as vital as the jazz, rock and rhythm and blues worlds; it also constantly intersected with the secular music industry, providing models that countless artists outside the church emulated. GOSPEL ROOTS OF ROCK AND SOUL, an ongoing series from WXPN, explores these connections as a way of reinstituting gospel's central place within the history of American popular music. It includes free live performances, dynamic radio programs, and an interactive website featuring exclusive contributions from some of the most acclaimed and authoritative voices in gospel and popular music. 

The project is supported with a grant from The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage and will extend through early 2019.

Grammy-winning gospel singer CeCe Winans hosts this look back at how church music influenced popular rock and soul genres.

Last month, public radio stations across the country bid farewell to Live from Here with Chris Thile, which ceased production and was therefore no longer available. This program will indeed be missed on the High Plains, but there’s a bright side: new shows on the schedule! Here’s how HPPR will be switching things up for September and beyond, so mark your calendars:


NPR’s Alt.Latino (5:00 – 5:30p) 

"Without gospel music there never would have been an Elvis Presley, a Ray Charles, a James Brown, or an Aretha Franklin." —ANN POWERS, AUTHOR & MUSIC JOURNALIST