Legendary Songwriter and Charlotte-area resident Melvin Crispell has passed away unexpectedly. It is believed that Crispell passed from complications connected to his diabetes, during a minor surgery.
Melvin Crispell was most widely known for his ground-breaking and prolific skill on a church organ. Gospel artists worldwide have take to social media to express this enormous loss. Our very own Yolanda Adams remarked via twitter “Melvin Crispell is a legend whose music influenced choirs & musicians. His legacy will live on through the music God birthed through him.” And that music is ringing out today in celebration of the life and musical legacy. Songs like “Jesus Is My Help” recorded by Hezekiah Walker, and “Wonderful Is Your Name” also recorded by Walker as well as Juanita Bynum. There are countless songs recorded by James Hall Worship & Praise, among them “Caught Up” and “He Took My Place”, from Crispell’s early days and life in New York.
In recent years, he had relocated to the Charlotte-area. Sharing musically in ministry at The Life Center and presently at Freedom Temple in Rock Hill. Melvin had quickly left his mark here and had released and worked on several projects while here including a choir project with group, Testimony and as musician on Tye Tribbett’s Stand Out.
Artists like Kurt Carr, JJ Hairston, Jonathan Nelson, and James Hall are expressing sadness at this musical loss, but also at the loss of a FRIEND. Melvin, known to be a comedian, always had a smile on his face – even when he was fussing at the choir :0). Many are also celebrating what Melvin taught them. Unselfish with his gift, he’d share a chord, technique or tip with anyone who’d listen.
Funeral arrangements are pending. Please keep his family and friends and all of those whose lives he touched in prayer.