After much anticipation, Vincent Bohanan & SOV’s rousing set Live In Chicago is available now on HezHouse Entertainment/RCA Inspiration. Bohanan, who also serves as Pastor of The Winner’s Assembly – a thriving church in Brooklyn, New York, comprised entirely of members under the age of 30 years old – has mastered the generational divide by reaching back to the days of traditional gospel choir music and bringing them fully into the new millennium. Live In Chicago puts this gift on full display.
The album opens by ushering in the spirit with a stirring rendition of “The Lord’s Prayer.” Known for their full-throated youthful energy, SOV’s delivery on hits such as the first release from the album, “Any Day Now,” leaves you no choice but to move. The current single “Oh Give Thanks” is not only befitting the holiday season, it is a praise chant that showcases the choir’s expansive vocal range with infectious energy and modulations that soar to the heavens. “I Believe God” is an up-tempo praise break-inspiring decree of faith that would be just as at home in the 1980s as it is in 2021, and gives a nod to Ron Kenoly’s popular “Whose Report Shall You Believe?”
In this TCB Exclusive, Bohanan reflects on the recording of the album, how he will define success for the record and his hope for the new collection.
Congratulations on the upcoming release of Live In Chicago! Why is the message of this project so important to you personally?
The message of this project is so important because we’re living in a time where EVERYONE is dealing with the effects of this pandemic. This pandemic has brought a great amount of loss, change, and tribulation. I believe that Gospel music has a way of bringing peace, love and joy to any situation. ‘Live In Chicago’ will lift up any person that hears it.
When did you first have the vision for this project, and how did it evolve into the product being released?
I love history and was immediately amazed by the deep history of Gospel music and Gospel choirs in Chicago. I wanted to record an album there and have SOV be a part of the long list of great choirs that have done projects in Chicago. We brought ALL of our choir members and had an awesome recording session. It was a blizzard and we still were able to sell out Greater Harvest Church for the recording.
Take us back to recording the project live. How did that day most surprise you, perhaps even exceeding your expectations?
‘Live In Chicago’ was recorded in January. When we arrived, the temperature was -6 degrees! I never thought we could experience cold weather like that. Beside the temperature, the thing that surprised me the most was how many people came from all over the country just to witness SOV’s live recording in Chicago. That was totally humbling and exciting at the same time. The audience came ready to have church! They came with tambourines, washboards and whistles. The energy in the room was out of this world!
Is there a lyric or track that you think the world most needs to hear now in its current state?
I believe “Jesus Saved The Day” is a track that will touch the listener’s heart. This song was written from my heart. I had the ability to speak my mind and put it into a song. This track talks about the condition of my spiritual walk with God. After all that I have been through, His love saved my life.
How are you looking to define success for this project compared to some of your previous projects?
I want ‘Live In Chicago’ to provide a sense of hope in what the future of choir music sounds like, and that there will always be an audience that gravitates towards it. If given the chance, we can prove that there is a space in the church and marketplace for this kind of choir music. I like to call it ‘traditional-ish’ because it honors the chorale foundation but also has some newness that represents the spirit of my generation.
Who, or what, is currently providing inspiration for you, either musically or spiritually?
I would say the current condition of the world is actually giving me inspiration to write songs that are going to help us through what we are in. It is not so much a person, but the climate that we are in. This is what gives me the inspiration to write music that will lift, help, and encourage people for the time that we are in right now.
What are you most expectant for looking toward 2022?
Just like they say in business, I’m looking to scale in 2022. I’m looking forward to continue working the way I’ve always done, but on a larger scale. I’m looking forward to making more connections so that I can collaborate in different spaces. It is also my hope and prayer that ‘Live In Chicago’ will be in the hands and ears of many people, especially those who have never heard of me before. I’m expecting growth, expansion and impact in 2022.