Smokie Norful is a renowned gospel singer, songwriter, and pianist who has made a significant impact on the music industry with his soulful voice and heartfelt lyrics. Born on October 31, 1975, in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, Norful discovered his love for music at a young age and has since become one of the most respected artists in the gospel genre.
Norful's musical journey began in the church, where he honed his skills as a singer and pianist. He attended the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff, where he earned a degree in history and was also a member of the university's gospel choir. It was during this time that Norful realized his calling to pursue a career in music and ministry.
In 2002, Norful released his debut album, "I Need You Now," which quickly garnered attention and became a hit in the gospel community. The album featured the popular single of the same name, which showcased Norful's powerful vocals and emotional delivery. "I Need You Now" earned Norful a Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Soul Gospel Album and solidified his place as a rising star in the genre.
Following the success of his debut album, Norful released his second studio album, "Nothing Without You," in 2004. The album featured collaborations with well-known gospel artists such as Kirk Franklin and Tye Tribbett. "Nothing Without You" received critical acclaim and further established Norful as a talented musician and songwriter. The album's title track became a fan favorite and earned Norful a Grammy nomination for Best Gospel Performance.
In 2006, Norful released his third album, "Life Changing," which showcased his growth as an artist and his ability to connect with listeners on a deeper level. The album featured songs that explored themes of faith, hope, and personal transformation. "Life Changing" received positive reviews and solidified Norful's place as a respected figure in the gospel music industry.
Throughout his career, Norful has released several more albums, including "Smokie Norful Live" in 2009 and "Forever Yours" in 2012. These albums showcased Norful's versatility as an artist and featured a mix of powerful ballads and uplifting worship songs. Norful's music has resonated with audiences around the world, and his soul-stirring performances have earned him a dedicated fan base.
In addition to his successful music career, Norful is also a pastor and author. He leads Victory Cathedral Worship Center in Bolingbrook, Illinois, where he serves as the senior pastor. Norful's ministry focuses on empowering individuals to live a life of faith and purpose. He has also written several books, including "Take the Lid Off: Trust God, Release the Pressure, and Find the Life He Wants for You."
Norful's contributions to the music industry have not gone unnoticed, as he has received numerous awards and accolades throughout his career. In addition to his Grammy wins and nominations, Norful has also been recognized with Dove Awards, Stellar Awards, and an NAACP Image Award. These accolades are a testament to Norful's talent and his ability to create music that uplifts and inspires listeners.
In recent years, Norful has continued to release new music and perform at various events and concerts. His most recent album, "Forever Yours: Deluxe Edition," was released in 2020 and features a collection of his most beloved songs.
Smokie Norful's impact on the gospel music industry is undeniable. His powerful vocals, heartfelt lyrics, and unwavering faith have touched the lives of countless individuals around the world. Whether through his music, ministry, or written work, Norful continues to inspire and uplift others with his message of hope, love, and the transformative power of faith.
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