HIGH HILL PRODUCTIONS Presents: Joshland Shervette

70/80 GOSPEL (blog)

blog #2 - Praise Belongs To God by Elbernita "Twinkie" Clark

Twinkie Clark is an amazing singer, organist, and song writing genius!  She is one of the legendary, gospel singing Clark Sisters (#theclarksisters).  She released a PHENOMENAL solo album in 1979 entitled, Elbernita “Twinkie” Clark - Praise Belongs To God.   Everyone calls her “Twinkie” Clark though.  She looked so Regal on her album cover wearing a red rose in her hair. 


It was 1980 or 1981….mabye.  I was a little girl (of 4 or 5 years old), she came to our church (Prayer Garden Church Of God In Christ located in San Jose, California). She was sitting two or three rows ahead of my mom and me in the sanctuary.  She was visiting our church because we were having our annual music workshop.   Normally, a group of famous gospel singers and musicians would come and teach classes on subjects relative to music, like theory and vocal training. 


A host of people from all over The United States would participate in the workshop.  Everyone would be divided into separate choirs of children, teens, and adults, and would learn new songs taught by the gifted gospel celebrities in order to sing them during a series of concert nights.  Later on, my mother told me this workshop was conducted by Dr. Mattie Moss Clark, the mother of The Clark Sisters.  She was the International Minister of Music of The Churches Of God In Christ.  So, this event was a BIG deal!  I could not wait to go back to the chapel where I, along with all of the other children would have fun learning our new songs!!!


Now, I believe that a couple of the other Clark Sisters (Twinkie’s sisters) came to our church as well.  Unfortunately, I am unable to recollect which ones and how many there were.  I do remember them bringing a very special person with them.  I only knew her name to be:   SISTER IRIS.  Oh my goodness!!!  I loved Sister Iris!  I am so emotional as I write this.  She was the one who taught me, along with the other children new songs to sing for our designated concert night.  She was incredible.  She was so loving and caring.  She was a wonderful song teacher and a great singer too.  She even had me, alongside three other girls to sing a special part in one of the songs she taught us.  I loved every last one of those songs she taught us!!!  You know, I still remember a few of them to this day.  They pop into my mind every now and then.  I will always remember Sister Iris.  I am so thankful to The Clark Sisters for bringing her with them.    


Anyway, back to Twinkie Clark.  As I was saying, I was sitting with my mom, awaiting my dismissal to go to my class when I saw her.  I could not believe that Twinkie Clark was sitting so close to us at the church.  I was just so in awe of her.   My mom said, “Well, why don't I just go down there and introduce you to her.”  I shook my head NO!  In my mind, I just couldn't meet her. Afterall, my mother didn’t know her.  So, how was she going to introduce me to Twinkie Clark?!


Her music was such an inspiration to my life. I just couldn't meet her. Imagine, little me; little Joshland shaking the hand of THE amazing, incomparable TWINKIE CLARK!!  My mind was frantic. 


I was thinking about how I was always listening to her singing on the 8-track player while riding in the backseat of my grandmother's Chrysler LeBaron.  I would be back there just enjoying every note she sang and played on that album.  I would sing along with her too.  Therefore, I thought that I could not meet her.  I was just so in awe of her.  What would I say.  What could I say?  So, I decided not to meet her that day. Like I said.  I was only about 4 or 5 years old.  I am now 41 years of age at the time of this writing.  But back then, that was my reasoning. 


She was so amazing, and I loved all 6 songs on this album.  She wrote all of the songs; she sang all of the songs; she played the keyboards, the synthesizer, and the organ on all of the songs; she mixed all of the songs; and she produced all of the songs.


She still means so much to me as a recording artist, songwriter, musician, recording engineer, producer, and arranger. She is a queen!  She is a genius!  She is an icon!  She is AMAZING!  And I envision myself meeting her at the right place and at the right time.  So, without further ado, here it is!   Listen to Praise Belongs To God by Elbernita “Twinkie” Clark on Spotify:  https://open.spotify.com/user/4e0pz5p0leqwq8xnb0ccf6fwx/playlist/6lDkxnmKXDX2HMnUlxfBHh?si=BQ43o7H8Rq6KDgle0WEiLQ


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