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Singer Avery Sunshine has a pretty good pedigree in both R&B and gospel music.  She has collaborated with everyone from Will Downing and Musiq Soulchild to Michael Bublé, Anthony Hamilton, and Jennifer Holliday and is the choir director at the famed Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta, Georgia.

Her current CD The Sun Room, has been at the top of the R&B charts for the last few weeks and she’s performing on the 2015 Tom Joyner Fantastic Voyage.

Sunshine is from Chester, Pennsylvania a suburb of Philadelphia. She says she’s been singing all her life, but more by default she says.

“I started playing piano first. I wasn’t trying to sing. I sang by default because folks wasn’t showing up to do their solos,” Sunshine says. No, her father wasn’t a minister in fact, she says, he was “quite the opposite.”

“My daddy was Stacy Adams with some Sansabelt pants,” she says. “I used to talk about it in my shows but folks act like they don’t know.”

Sunshine went to Spelman instead of nearby Cheyney University because at that point, she wanted to get away.

“My mother said it hurt her heart but they both moved to Atlanta with me,” Sunshine says. A graduate of Spelman she says that while she appreciates the experience, she’ll be paying her college tuition and her children’s at the same time.

Denise Nicole White is her government name, but now she’s best known of course, by her music moniker. This album has been the most successful of her career. She says that she and her partner wrote a song called “Stalker” which was the first one they sold. When they asked her how she wanted to be credited, she blurted out Avery Sunshine.

“I think it comes from my love of two favorite characters – Shug Avery from The Color Purple and Sunshine from Harlem Nights,” she says.

Click the link above to hear the entire interview!

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Ne-Yo 01-29-15
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