Priscilla Marie Winans Love, known professionally as CeCe Winans, // (born October 8, 1964) is an American gospel singer who has won 12 Grammy Awards and 23 GMA Dove Awards, along with many other awards. She has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and has 3.5 million record sales certified by RIAA, and 5 million estimated in total sales. Billboard magazine lists eight of her solo albums as top Christian music sellers, and six albums as a duo with her older brother, BeBe Winans.
Winans in 1994
|Birth name||Priscilla Marie Winans|
|Also known as||CeCe Love |
CeCe Winans Love
|Born||October 8, 1964|
Detroit, Michigan, U.S.
|Associated acts||BeBe & CeCe Winans, BeBe Winans, The Winans, Whitney Houston|
Winans was born in Detroit, Michigan, to Delores and David Winans, on October 8, 1964. She is one of 10 children. Her parents were part of the Pentecostal Holiness Church and would only listen to gospel music. She sang her first solo at the age of 8.
Duo with BeBe Winans
Winans first went to Charlotte, North Carolina, in 1981 as a singer on the popular Christian telecast, The PTL Club, hosted by Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker. Although originally part of the larger Winans family singing group, CeCe and her older brother BeBe became a duo during their time at PTL, in response to positive reactions to their version of the song "Up Where We Belong" sung as a duet, with lyrics changed for Christian audiences. In 1984, CeCe and Bebe released their first album, Lord Lift Us Up, for PTL Records. They achieved crossover success, eventually releasing nine Gold and Platinum recordings, billed as BeBe & CeCe Winans. Winans left PTL in 1984 just before getting married. Her brother left in 1985. They released their second album in 1987: BeBe & CeCe Winans.
Winans began her solo career with the album Alone in His Presence, released in 1995. It sold more than a million copies, and earned her a Grammy Award and two Dove Awards, including the Female Vocalist of the Year. Winans's next release, the Gold-certified Everlasting Love, was released in 1998 and featured Winans' highest-charting solo singles: "Well Alright" and "Slippin". The song "On That Day" from the album was written and produced by R&B singer Lauryn Hill. Later that year, Winans released His Gift; a holiday album.
In 1999, Winans started her own recording company, PureSprings Gospel. Her first album on the label was Alabaster Box in 1999. Some production of the disc was done by Gospel singer and musician Fred Hammond. It included a guest appearance by Take 6. In 2000 Winans released a concert VHS titled Live at the Lambs Theater in New York. The concert contained songs from her previous albums. Winans released her next album, the self-titled CeCe Winans, in 2001. The single "Anybody Wanna Pray" included a guest appearance by GRITS. The second single, "Say A Prayer" crossed over into the CCM market.
Winans took a two-year break from releasing albums and returned in 2003 with Throne Room. The first 1,000 copies were issued with a bonus CD that contained exclusive interviews with the artist, the making of the CD, some touring footage, and the music video "More Than What I Wanted" (which came from the 2001 release). In 2004, the 25-city tour Throne Room with the group Anointed featured free admission and was followed with a DVD release of the concert recorded in Tennessee. Live in the Throne Room contained tracks from all of Winans's albums. Around September 2004, Winans experienced what she thought was a flu but turned out to be a serious stomach infection and was hospitalized immediately for surgery. Due to the extended recovery time, the second half of the Throne Room Tour was postponed to early 2005.
Winans's seventh album Purified was released in 2005. Her nephew Mario Winans was one of four producers. Her son Alvin III co-wrote several songs on the album, and her younger sisters Angie and Debbie performed.
Winans' collection of Top Ten R&B radio hits include "Count On Me", her duet with Whitney Houston, from the Waiting to Exhale soundtrack. The single was certified Gold in the US and reached No. 8 on the Billboard Hot 100, No. 4 on the Adult Contemporary chart, and No. 8 on the Billboard R&B Singles chart.
Winans released her eighth album, Thy Kingdom Come on April 1, 2008, featuring the single "Waging War". On October 6, 2009, a BeBe & CeCe reunion album named Still was released by Malaco Records, and features collaborations with Marvin Winans and contemporary gospel sister duo Mary Mary.
Winans has authored three books: On A Positive Note, a memoir released August 1, 2000; Throne Room: Ushered Into the Presence of God, a devotional released January 1, 2004, and co-authored with Claire Cloninger; and Always Sisters: Becoming the Princess You Were Created to Be, released on July 17, 2007, co-written with Claudia Mair Burney.
Winans now resides in Brentwood, Tennessee, a suburb of Nashville, with her husband Alvin Love and two children. Her children were featured in the BeBe & CeCe Winans music video "If Anything Ever Happened to You".
Winans was a friend of Whitney Houston and godmother to her daughter, Bobbi Kristina Brown. On February 18, 2012, Winans performed "Don't Cry for Me" and "Jesus Loves Me" at Houston's funeral, at New Hope Baptist Church in Newark, New Jersey.
- See also BeBe & CeCe Winans discography
- 1996: "Count On Me" (Whitney Houston & Winans)
- 1998: "Well Alright"
- 1998: "The River"
- 2001: "More Than What I Wanted"
- 2017: "Dancing in the Spirit"
- 2018: "It's Christmas"
- 2020: "Never Lost"
- This list does not include interviews or musical performances.
- 1994: Martin (episode: "Go Tell It on the Martin")
- 1997: Living Single (episode: "Oh, Solo Mio")
- 1997–99: CeCe's Place (on the Odyssey Channel)
- 2002: 7th Heaven (episode: "The Known Soldier")
- 2002: Doc (episode: "The Price of a Miracle")
- 2003–: Praise the Lord (occasional guest host)
Awards and nominations
- Hight, Jewly (February 2, 2017). "'At This Age, This Is Who I Am': The Gospel According To CeCe Winans". NPR. Retrieved October 29, 2020.
- "Profile: BeBe & CeCe Winans". National Museum of African American Music. July 31, 2018. Retrieved October 29, 2020.
- LaTonya Taylor (October 2005). "Purified by Fire". Christianity Today. Retrieved August 25, 2007.
- Fusemix. "Cece Winans and Bebe Winans on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno 12/23/10".
- "CeCe Winans". BET. Retrieved April 9, 2014.
- Norment, Lynn (1998). "At Home with CeCe Winans". Ebony Magazine. Retrieved August 25, 2007.
- "CeCe Winans Official Biography". PureSprings Gospel. Archived from the original on August 25, 2007. Retrieved August 3, 2007.
- Winans, CeCe: On a Positive Note (August 1, 2000)