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Columbus’ Michael Brown loves gospel music. And he loved his dad, the late gospel singer and radio disc jockey J.C. Brown, who died two years ago.
Those two loves will blend in the kickoff of the free Gospel Music Week with a performance at 7 p.m. today at Columbus’ First Church of the Nazarene, 1245 McClure Road.
He’ll take the stage with his wife, Julia; 9-year-old daughter, Kandace; and 4-year-old son, Malachi.
The mention of the Browns young son performing on stage sometimes garners a few questioning looks. “But he can carry a tune,” Michael Brown said.
The Southern gospel event runs three days, through Saturday. Its name comes from its origin after J.C. Brown’s launch 34 years ago when it stretched a week in the old Commons on Washington Street. In that structure, some Sunday afternoon concerts drew an estimated 800 people, including a full balcony overlooking the stage.
The event of the past few years has been smaller, attracting about 350 to 400 people on its strongest nights at the Nazarene church. Michael figures the change in part is because it’s not as centrally located as The Commons — and one other factor.
“Some people will not come to a church for a concert,” he said. “That’s one of the reasons Dad always really liked The Commons. He felt it allowed him to reach out more easily to the (spiritually) lost.”
Michael said that, while he appreciates the church venue, funding has been insufficient to rent the Commons. But he and his brothers, who help coordinate the event, hope to return to the downtown facility at some point.
“And another goal at some point would be to be able to feature a big-name group every night,” he said.
This year, the nationally touring Talleys, considered a progressive Southern gospel foursome, are slated to close the event with a performance at 8 p.m. Saturday. The group, based in Morristown, Tenn., has been a staple among gospel acts for years.
What: Gospel Music Week
When: Today through Saturday.
Where: First Church of the Nazarene, 1245 McClure Road, Columbus.
7 p.m. — Michael Brown Family.
7:40 p.m. — Christian Cavaliers.
8:20 p.m. — New Direction.
7 p.m. — Brock Family.
7:40 p.m. — The Maryville Bluegrass Boys.
8:20 p.m. — Crimson Hill.
7 p.m. — The Nales.
7:30 p.m. — The Parsons.
8 p.m. — The Talleys.
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