A true artist is hard to recognize. No doubt nowadays true singers are frustrated by some of today’s offerings. But not Ann Nesby. Everything in God’s time. And Ann is very patient.
So far it’s unfolded like this…Born and raised in Joliet Illinois, Ann’s love for music was directly influenced by her parents. “Both of my parents started in Gospel music” states Ann. “My mom would teach me about performance, vocal inflections, and how to express what a song was about” she says. “She told me as a child that God was going to use me to bless people with my voice” And what a blessing she is.
In 1987, a trip to Minneapolis to visit her sister literally changed Ann’s life forever. Her sister Shirley Graham had been singing with the much acclaimed Sound of Blackness for several years when Shirley and ‘Sounds’ director Gary Hines, encouraged Ann to participate in the Sounds of Blackness celebration “Music For Martin”, a tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King. Her performance so impressed the director that he immediately invited her to join the group. Ann accepted and and soon after relocated to Minneapolis.
Following her induction into the group super producers, Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis were producing an album for pop icon Janet Jackson and while taking a break from the studio in Minneapolis Janet witnessed Ann and the Sounds of Blackness performing their rendition of “A Night Before Christmas” – A Musical Fantasy. At Janet’s insistence Jam & Lewis signed the group as their first act on the newly formed label Perspective Records.
With Ann’s voice leading the way The Sounds of Blackness went on to become one of the most nationally recognized gospel choirs in the world, generating the Top 10 Gospel/R&B hits “Optimistic”, “Testify” and “The Pressure”, earning two Grammy awards. In 1996 again under the Perspective Records umbrella Ann released her highly anticipated debut solo LP entitled “I’m Here For You”. The record solidified Ann’s individual talent generating the hit singles “I’m Still Wearing Your Name” and the emotional single “I’ll Do Anything For You”.
Ann Nesby will celebrate her 25th year anniversary with the release of her 8th album “Annthology,” due next Spring.
You can currently catch Ann in David E. Talbert‘s “What My Husband Doesn’t Know” starring Morris Chestnut, Clifton Davis and Michelle Williams.
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