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Kirk Franklin Raises the Roof in NPR ‘Tiny Desk’ Show From Texas Studio

Kirk Franklin performed with his band and choir in the latest “at-home” Tiny Desk concert from NPR, playing live from his studio Uncle Jesse’s Kitchen in Arlington, Texas. And leave it to the gospel legend to bring the energy of a euphoric church service right through the computer screen.

“I know you’re at home right now, in your draws, listening to some Jesus music,” he said straight to the camera. “It’s OK. Jesus loves you in your draws!”

Franklin performed with a gospel choir made up of Melodie Pace, Darian Elliot, Michael Bethany, Eboni Ellerson, Deon Yancey, and Tia Rudd, with Terry Baker on drums and percussion, Matthew Ramsey on bass, and Grammy-winning producer and musician Shaun Martin on keyboard. After opening with a joyous rendition of “Love Theory,” the group gave a tender performance of the classic “Silver and Gold,” followed by “Melodies From Heaven,” and the infectious “Smile,” complete with Franklin grinning at the camera while passionately playing the keyboard.

“I know that 2020 was difficult,” Franklin said when introducing the song. “I believe that there’s still hope for you in 2021 because the same God that loves us loves you. He’s not forgotten about you, and there’s a greater plan for your life. And all you’ve got to do, no matter what — even if you don’t have all your teeth, even if you have just one good tooth — all you gotta do is smile.”

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