America's Word Records re-enter the gospel music arena.

WORD RECORDS, once a substantial force in black gospel music with such acts as The Clark Sisters, Al Green, Shirley Caesar and Helen Baylor, have announced plans to begin rebuilding its gospel roster. The Word Label Group president Barry Landis told Billboard, "We're just trying to get Word back into the gospel music business. Is there a chance that turns into a label or an imprint of its own? Absolutely, but we really wanted to take this one step at a time." The first act to be signed under the new initiative is Generation J, an Atlanta-based family group who've recently complete a tour with Jaci Velasquez. Generation J's album 'Secret Place' has been released in the US in a joint venture between Atlanta-based Arrow Records and Word. Other gospel acts to be released through Word are the group Fortitude and duo Ted & Sheri. Veteran gospel hitmaker Karen Clark-Sheard is also expected to sign with Word.

The label is also issuing a series of compilation CDs, 'All Star Gospel Hits' which will feature Aretha Franklin, Donnie McClurkin, Andrae Crouch, Candi Staton and Ladysmith Black Mambazzo amongst others. CR

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