The highly acclaimed, gospel singing duo BeBe and CeCe Winans recently released “Still,” their first album together in 15 years. The siblings have had some personal dramas during that time, but they haven’t lost their musical gifts. The relaxed and laid-back “Still” is a classic, the perfect comfort during these troubling times–R&B sounding but filled with inspirational messages and laced with that Winans soulfulness. “Still” made it to No. 1 on the Gospel Album Chart, No. 2 on the R&B Album Chart and No. 14 on the Pop Album Chart.
ESSENCE.COM caught up with the BeBe and CeCe to talk about their successful musical reunion, the message in their music and the loss of both their brother and father.
ESSENCE.COM: What brought you guys back together?
BEBE WINANS: For the last three years we said we had to do this. We started to gather some songs and a wish list of producers. It took a two and a half year process. We started on that journey and not it’s done.
ESSENCE.COM: Gospel has always been extremely popular, but with the success of Mary Mary–especially their crossover success–I think you guys are coming back at a really great time.
BEBE WINANS: It’s kind of funny that when we came on the scene it was if we were the first contemporary [crossover] success story in mainstream. We stood of the shoulders of our brothers, The Clark Sisters, Andre Crouch before us. And just like anyone, when you open a door, you pray and wish others are ready and eager to come through those doors. Mary, Mary and Yolanda Adams have done wonderful things and continue where we left off. I just always had the belief that people everywhere have to hear the messages.
ESSENCE.COM: Speaking of messages, what are the themes you are getting across on the album?
BEBE WINANS: We still have the same vision and that is to touch every life with hope, with God’s love, with music that is uplifting. There’s 15 years of journey that CeCe and myself have endured, some ups and some downs, the loss of our brother, the loss of our father. Through loss we can tell others, ‘Hey you can make it.’
ESSENCE.COM: What has loss taught you and how has that affected this album?
CECE WINANS: (Long pause) Sort of makes you appreciate, it definitely teaches you to appreciate and don’t take each other for granted because you don’t know what tomorrow holds. I mean one day Dad was doing very well and the next day he was in the hospital. You really do [have] to live like today is the last day and it’s not promised. To tell those who you love that you love them. My father really prepared us to endure that moment through God’s love and teaching us God’s strength and faithfulness. He did his job well.
“Still” is available in stores and online now.