Rickey Smiley and John P. Kee on the 22nd Annual Super Bowl Gospel Celebration
“Nothing Can Stop Us” is Theme for the 22nd Annual Super Bowl Gospel Celebration
And the show must go on!
The 22nd Annual Super Bowl Gospel Celebration will air on BET during Super Bowl LV week on Saturday, February 6th at 8/7c.
Snapping away from challenges that would’ve prevented the 22nd Annual Super Bowl Gospel Celebration from kicking off, organizers planned and executed another stellar event.
Kickstarting the evening of Black Excellence, Author and Pastor, Mike Todd, is opening the celebration with a prayer themed, "Nothing Can Stop Us.” Actor Courtney Vance is sharing a very special message.
Radio and TV personality, Rickey Smiley, is hosting, with feature performances by The NFL Players Choir, Erica Campbell, Voices of Fire presented by Pharrell Williams, PJ Morton, Kierra Sheard, Koryn Hawthorne, Zacardi Cortez, and an exclusive performance by gospel music pioneer and living legend John P. Kee. Additionally, the show will feature appearances from NFL Players Desean Jackson (Philadelphia Eagles), Dak Prescott (Dallas Cowboys), Jacoby Brissett (Indianapolis Colts), Teddy Bridgewater (Carolina Panthers), Desean Jackson (Philadelphia Eagles), Lamar Jackson (Baltimore Ravens) NFL Legend Cris Carter and award-winning actor Courtney B. Vance.
Stoking the energy from years past, Rickey Smiley is back. He’s vibrantly setting the stage as host. Pastor John P. Kee said the song is performing song, “It's Gonna Get Better,” which ties into the theme, "Nothing Can Stop Us."
Rickey Smiley is another public figure that caught Covid-19 back at the slump of January or February 2020. Smiley was asymptomatic, and didn’t know he had it. Now, he’s testifying through good old fashioned comedy while bringing awareness that COVID-19 is real. In addition to that, he’s talking about cancer awareness in black communities.
In a press conference held on Thursday, the hilariously cool Rickey Smiley, and Pastor John P. Kee talked about their friendship and attributions to the ceremony this year. Pastor John P also talked about catching Covid-19.
“When you go through COVID,” John P. Kee remarks, “and see what COVID has done to our community, to our people-- I need everybody to know that it was no joke. I thought I was healed, totally. Four nights ago, I had the same … it was just like someone just turned the light switch off on my whole life. I’m just grateful. I’m super grateful, and shout out to Melanie, and to everybody. This is the only gig in the world. I didn’t care to do nothing else. I traveled when I wanted to—I wanted to do this one.[Response contributed to Uncommon Gospel].”
John P. Kee and Rickey Smiley expressed gratitude to be part of something so powerful and magnetic
“With me,“ says John P. Kee, “Let me shot out to the crew that actually worked with us on the performance. Everybody was so professional and with the pandemic or COVID-19 we had to be super careful, and I understand that the testing, was kinda, almost pressure at one time-- and to make it to that evening and to hang out with such an amazing crew, I’m super excited about it. I think it encouraged me, because again, I think it’s on purpose. I don’t think it’s just a performance. I think it’s on purpose; and like Rickey said, the things they prepared, we really believe that people are going to be inspired and encouraged.”
“For me, it’s a hard job because, Pastor Kee, I shot mine in an empty church,” Rickey Smiley said. “I’m trying to be funny with no audience and so you can hear the cameraman in the background snickering and laughing. When you’re a comedian, you feed off the laughter so I really do miss the live audience but that’s a real test of you kinda doing your job without what you need, which is your response from the audience. It was great. It was a lot of fun”
Smiley talked about the time that he got booed at showtime at the Apollo. “If I can perform through boo’s, and get the jokes in through boo’s, he said. “I can perform through silence.”
Originating at Super Bowl XXXIII in 1999, the annual event joins key NFL Players, top Gospel/Contemporary Christian, and mainstream GRAMMY® Award-winning artists, and special guests all on one stage to bring audiences an evening of uplifting music and inspirational messages.
Super Bowl Gospel Celebration (SBGC) is the largest multicultural event during the Super Bowl weekend. In its 22-year run, founded by a black woman as an NFL-sanctioned event, SBGC has featured artists including Patti LaBelle, Yolanda Adams, Gladys Knight, Natalie Grant, Mary Mary, Fantasia, Donnie McClurkin, Anthony Hamilton, among many others.
Melanie Few is the Founder and NFL Sanction Holder of the Super Bowl Gospel Celebration. The show’s Executive Producers are Connie Orlando, EVP of Specials, Music Programming & Music Strategy at BET, Jamal Noisette, VP of Specials & Music Programming at BET, Jeannae Rouzan-Clay, CEO of J. Rou Productions Inc.
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ABOUT THE SUPER BOWL GOSPEL CELEBRATION
The Super Bowl Gospel Celebration was launched in Miami in 1999 during Super Bowl XXXIII weekend. The event became the first and has remained the only inspirational concert sanctioned by the National Football League (NFL). The show has drawn crowds in the thousands and has demonstrated growth year-after-year, selling out venues in major Super Bowl host cities including Dallas, Atlanta, Detroit, Jacksonville, Houston, and Phoenix.
ABOUT BET BET Networks, a subsidiary of Viacom Inc. (NASDAQ: VIACA, VIAC), is the nation's leading provider of quality entertainment, music, news and, public affairs television programming for the African-American audience. The primary BET channel is in 90 million households and can be seen in the United States, Canada, the Caribbean, the United Kingdom, sub-Saharan Africa and, France. BET is the dominant African American consumer brand with a diverse group of business extensions, including BET.com, a leading Internet destination for Black entertainment, music, culture, and news. BET HER, a 24-hour entertainment network targeting the African-American Woman; BET Music Networks - BET Jams, BET Soul and BET Gospel; BET Home Entertainment; BET Live, BET’s growing festival business; BET Mobile, which provides ringtones, games, and video content for wireless devices; and BET International, which operates BET Networks around the globe.