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Gospel Legend LaShun Pace Has Died; Her 15 Best Songs

Gospel music great LaShun Pace has died at 60. A true solider for Christ has gone home but I celebrate her life and legacy. Growing up in the church choir I sang (in the background of course) many a LaShun Pace song. She had one of the most instantly recognizable voices in all of music. Pace started her career singing with her eight sisters (all of them can sing like nobody's business) in the gospel group The Anointed Pace Sisters. LaShun eventually embarked on a successful solo career that saw her hit the top of the gospel charts, appear in films like Steve Martin's Leap of Faith and in gospel stage plays. In the midst of much success she also suffered great tragedy like the death of her 11 year old daughter Xenia of a massive heart attack. Pace's mother died in 2020, older sister Duranice in 2021 now LaShun of organ failure, she had been in need of a kidney transplant for the past five years. Her vocal dexterity and evangelistic passion made her one of my favorite singers, here are fifteen (15) of her top performances below.

1. For My Good

Whenever I'm down I turn on this song and it helps lift me up when I hear Pace reassure me that "he wouldn't put more on me than I can bear." If you ever feel like giving up or giving in just listen to the passion in Pace's vocals and you'll know "the troubles I have endured are for my good but God gets the glory."

2. There's A Leak in This Old Building

This song with its southern traditional sound is a gospel classic and one of Pace's best known songs for good reason. I challenge you to listen to this one and not want to tap your foot or snap you fingers to the infectious beat that accompanies Pace's strong vocals. LaShun has finally "moved home to that building not made by man's hand."

3. I Know I've Been Changed

Pace's solo signature song, there is hardly a Black church choir in America that hasn't at some point had this song in their repertoire. Used in countless movies, stage plays and re-recorded by dozens Pace made this into a gospel classic that will live on for generations to come. It was also the inspiration for Tyler Perry's very first stage play, he would eventually hire Pace to perform the song on stage. LaShun I hear you singing now, "The Angels in Heaven done signed my name."

4. Is Your All On the Altar

This is a classic hymn written around 1900 that LaShun Pace makes all her own. While she possessed a powerful voice known for her runs, in this performance you can hear just how much control she has over her voice. True to her evangelistic nature she uses the song to minister as she tells about the heartbreaking death of her 11 year old daughter just weeks prior to this performance. You'll be inspired by her unbelievable strength.

5. Walk with Me

Another classic gospel song that thanks to her evangelism she makes all her own. LaShun is ministering as much as she is singing, honestly telling you about her childhood upbringing. The song starts slow before adding in some bounce that removes it from the traditional arrangement many may know.

6. Act Like You Know

This was the first LaShun Pace song I remember listening to on gospel radio as a child. It features the great Karen Clark-Sheard, a member of fellow gospel sister act The Clark Sisters. In this live performance of the song, LaShun literally sings her sisters Leslie and Duranice up on stage. Leslie does a powerful ab-lib that has recently become a Tic-Tok challenge earning millions of views. At the end the sings her mother on stage and you can hear where all nine girls got their powerful singing voices.

8. Just Because God Said It

This is another Pace song that has inspired me over the years. When I find myself questioning if God is speaking to me or I want to inquire about what he is asking me, I remember the words to this song and I realize "Just because God said it, that's enough for me."

9. Ascension (Don't Ever Wonder)

If you are also a fan of 90's R&B music you will instantly recognize the beat and medley of this song. I love how a flip of the words from the secular to the Spiritual can work so well when you have a voice as lovely as LaShun Pace. Recorded for her live album Just Because God Said It (title song above) once you listen good luck not repeating "I'm in love with Jesus Christ" as you go about the rest of your day.

10. Jesus Is the Best Thing

Another song that is a gospel version of really big secular R&B hit. In this case Pace does her rendition of the late, great James Cleveland's gospel classic that was his take on Gladys Knight & the Pips 1973 mega-hit. Starting at around 1:45, Pace does an amazing take on this song and her vocal control is awesome. If you listen to nothing else go to about the last two minutes of the song where she sings her ABC's. Yes Pace incorporates the alphabet song into her performance flawlessly. One of my all time favorite performances from her.

11. Keep Going On

Less of a song and more of a sermon, Pace turns her preaching up full throttle over the melodious voices in the background. Knowing her personal story of illness, death, ups and downs I can't help but feel like this song was also a personal motto for LaShun Pace cause despite it all she "kept going on."

12. I'll be There

This one is bittersweet, written by Pace herself the lyrics are so poignant. As you listen to the words you know that they've come true and our dear sweet, talented LaShun is there.

13. Be Grateful

I know gospel music purists, this is not a LaShun Pace original but her version is so powerful, so good it almost makes you forget all about the 1978 original. I know to many that is blasphemous the Waltur Hawkins and family version (with lead vocals from Lynette Hawkins) is great and is a well remembered classic that topped the gospel charts; However Pace adds a soulfulness to the song that gives it a little extra umph and makes it hard not shout out a praise. Compare the two for yourself.

14. The Blood

This is technically a Youthful Praise song featuring LaShun Pace. However as you have heard by now when LaShun sings a song, any song, it becomes her song. Once she comes in on the second verse, Youthful Praise's leader J.J. Hairston, smartly gets out of the way and lets LaShun do her thing. What results is a song that should be a new Easter Sunday Classic.

15. LaShun Medley

This is a collection of my favorite LaShun Pace medleys. She vocalizes seamlessly through Gospel classics such as The High Place, No Weapon, In the Morning and many others. You also hear the best of her voice on both uptempo and ballads. I couldn't chose just one.

Rest well LaShun Pace 1961-2022.

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