March 2, 2004 in Toronto
The opening leg of the Fred Hammond Worship Alive Tour blew into Toronto (local promoter: House of Levi) on March 2, 2004, satisfying a crowded house at Canada Christian College.
Opening group 7 Sons of Soul whetted the appetite for what was to come. The DC-based six-man, new-school outfit recently signed to Verity Records and is slated for late March 2004 album debut. Decked out in white, the group favored the crowd with several songs, and was well received.
Then Fred Hammond took the stage, raising the roof in worship with "My, My, My God Is Good", followed by "Let The Praise Begin". With a select group of backing singers (Eugena Newmon, PamKenyon Donald, Davey Hammond), and that always-fab band in tow (Maurice Fitzgerald, Maxx Frank, Calvin Rodgers, Joey Woolfalk, Darius Fentress, Daniel Weatherspoon), he paused to encourage the crowd of about 1,700 to bless the Lord, as he continued with the funky "I Will Bless His Holy Name".
Then to spice things up a bit, his band kicked out some very distinctively Caribbean-rhythms, which kept the Caribbean inclined folks in attendance all smiles. Hammond kept the momentum going with several other songs, including "You Are My Life".
With his versatility and experience clearly evident, Hammond never missed a beat with the audience. "I'm totally committed to God", he said..."He's my Provider, my Peace, my Daily Bread, every good and perfect thing comes from Him". With that he went right into "You're Lord of the Harvest". The first set was filled with non-stop praise and worship.
The blockbuster hit The Passion of The Christ made its way into the concert, with Fred encouraging the audience to go see the movie. He said "If your church don't go to the movies, wait for the DVD, but don't bootleg Jesus. I was always awaiting something like this, God doesn't want to scare His people, He just wants to love us. God died to give us everlasting life".
That lead the way to him announcing his new album Somethin' 'Bout Love, slated for a June 2004 release, featuring the single "Celebrate! He Lives". Speaking of how the music moved him as he played the bass, he testified of how the song just cried out to him that, "Christ has risen just like He said". He went on to explain that the song says that "Jesus is alive!..Why seek the living among the dead, He is risen just like He said". As the song then unfolded, the crowd simply went wild, grooving to the contemporary beat and ageless message.
One of the crowd-pleasing highlights of the evening was the medley of traditional Gospel, with songs such as "God is a Good God", "I'm a Soldier in the Army of the Lord", "Ain't Nobody do Me Like Jesus" and several others. When the music stopped, the crowd continued for at least another five minutes.
When it seemed it was all over, out rang "Let the church say yeah!", as Hammond and crew burst back to lead the audience in worship with "Give Me a Clean Heart, "Jesus I Need You", "I Need Thee Every Hour", "There is None Like You" and "We Bring a Sacrifice of Praise."
"This is what this tour is all about", Hammond declared. "A sacrifice of praise". He then moved to "When We Praise", "You Are the Living Word" and "No Weapon", before he prayed and then exited the stage.
Fred Hammond was finished BUT the crowd was not ready to end things yet. After chanting, shout and screaming Fred returned and took a request from the throngs.
And then, as has become expected with Fred Hammond concerts, he cried out "Late in the midnight hour" and then dug into a rousing version of "Blessed", seguing to "Glory To Glory To Glory". Hammond left the stage again, but with the crowed still chanting "Blessed!", he soon returned and wrapped up the whole evening the favorite, "Jesus Be A Fence".
It was one of those evenings where everyone left blessed and more. To top it off, about 500 received a copy of the single release "Celebrate! He Lives". What more can one ask for?
Check out more photos from the Toronto stop of Fred Hammond's The Worship Alive Tour below.
Email This Article To A Friend
All content in GospelFlava © copyright 1997 - 2003. No
information to be reprinted or re-broadcast from this site without the expressed
written consent of GospelFlava.com. All rights reserved.