Cliff Jones

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This particular Cliff Jones' heavy association with gospel music would make any confusion between him and a British rock singer of the same name who fronts a combo called Gay Dad quite unfortunate. But…
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This particular Cliff Jones' heavy association with gospel music would make any confusion between him and a British rock singer of the same name who fronts a combo called Gay Dad quite unfortunate. But the Cliff Jones who has been associated with the 7 Sons of Soul, a Washington, D.C. area-based black gospel outfit, has not totally avoided all aspects of popular music that some preachers encourage an all-out boycott on. A talented collaborator who likes to dabble in many aspects of the music business, Jones has helped create tunes that show up on collections of heathen rave music, as opposed to religious raving.

The 7 Sons of Soul group itself creates gospel music of the sort that is intended to lure the secular crowd; it lacks a great deal of the obvious pivot points that inspire sinners to quickly twirl their radio dial. Jones, who had already been in the music business for several decades when the group was formed, has worked hard creating an appealing image -- garnering credits on one release not only for singing but as a stylist, arranger, and producer, even overseeing his own production capabilities in the additional role of executive producer. His background includes several years as an A&R man.

While this type of involvement might smack of a control freak, Jones' varied efforts as part of songwriting teams indicates the opposite. One of his non-religious numbers, "No More Games," lists some seven co-writers, suggesting that the title "No More Collaborators" might have been more useful. Gospel pieces such as "Precious Lord" and "Worship You" have been recorded by the great singer Gladys Knight. In 1996, Jones and James Washington released a single entitled "Black Woman."