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Neshawn Calloway; featured vocalist; 12.17.2016 & 12.18.2016

Home for the Holidays – 12.17.16 & 12.18.16

 

Neshawn Calloway

Born and raised in Olive Branch, Mississippi, Neshawn Calloway grew up singing and directing choirs in the church. Her formal music training began at 10 years old with piano lessons while also learning to play the clarinet in the middle school band. Upon graduating high school Neshawn attended Memphis State University, currently the University of Memphis, as a business major. It took a couple of years for her to finally realize she needed to follow her heart and pursue music. She began formal vocal training during her undergraduate years at the University of Memphis. In 1994 she moved to Chattanooga to pursue a master’s degree in Music Education at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. Upon completion of this degree she worked as music department coordinator and choir director at Chattanooga State Community College. During her tenure there she conducted two classical ensembles, jazz vocal ensemble and gospel choir. In 2001 she moved to the public school system and became choir director of six vocal ensembles at Chattanooga High School Center for Creative Arts. Neshawn’s ensembles have consistently scored superior ratings in local and regional festivals. In 2013 she was named Hamilton County teacher of the year, one of the few arts teachers ever receiving this honor. She professionally affiliated with the East Tennessee Vocal Association, Tennessee Music Education Association, National Association for Music Educators and the National Association of Negro Musicians. As a classically trained singer she is versatile in a variety of musical genres.

During her graduate studies Neshawn worked as an intern for the Bessie Smith Cultural Center. It was there she learned about the music and life of the legendary singer while working to collect artifacts for the exhibit that is still displayed at the center. Neshawn was asked to perform a few of Bessie’s numbers at the grand opening of the center and that began her much requested performances of the music of Bessie Smith. She began performing educational shows for classes at Chattanooga State. Throughout the city of Chattanooga she is known for her performances of the Empress of the Blues. Her love of jazz and blues took her to Hamm, Germany in 2012 where she performed for a sold out audience. As a jazz and blues singers, Neshawn is widely known in the Chattanooga area and performs frequently in various venues such as, The Camp House, Jazzanooga, and The Bessie Smith Cultural Center. She has also performed for the Chattanooga Nightfall series and Riverbend Festival. She also serves as the lead singer for neo soul band, Sound Advice.

Neshawn’s music ministry training began at Fairview Presbyterian Church where she began playing the piano at age 14. As a teenage she became one of the choir directors for St. Paul MB Church. At the age of 17 her family transitioned to Church of God in Christ joining St.Luke in 1984. It was at St. Luke, under the leadership of Superintendent Walter Shannon and musical leadership of Jerry Boyce, that Neshawn grew as a choir director and learned to become a worship leader. She is currently the music director for Temple of Faith Deliverance COGIC, Pastored by Dr. Rozario Slack.  It is in this role that she has continued to grow as a worship leader. The Lord put it in her spirit to begin working on a worship CD that would inspire those that are spiritually and emotionally broken, which is a journey she has experienced. The making of “Make it Through” began in 2015 with Sam Patton producing the project. Neshawn wants her music to be a blessing and encouragement to those that have experienced hurt and brokenness. She wants listeners to know that no matter how bad things seem, God can and will bring you through. Neshawn is a much sought after singer in church in the Chattanooga. It is her desire that her music ministry will take her to new areas and new levels in God.

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