By Anthony Richards
Tina Wakefield was destined to sing at an early age and recently had her first No. 1 hit with “Jesus take a hold,” which topped the Country Gospel Chart for the month of October.
“I didn’t know that it would go No. 1, but the whole reason I went back and made the latest project was because I could not get the message of that song out of my mind,” Wakefield said. “It is such a fitting song for where we are today as a society.”
She lives just north of Jemison and was originally born in Alabaster. Wakefield plays the piano to go along with her vocal prowess and has other songs sprinkled throughout the Southern Gospel Chart as well.
“My dad had a country band when we were growing up,” Wakefield said. “We got involved with the church and I started playing with the children’s choir.”
She has been the minister of music at Amazing Grace Worship Center in Alabaster for the last 20 years.
It has been quite a journey for Wakefield, who recorded her first CD five years ago. Since then she has created four more CDs, about one each year.
“I’ve always been a very bashful person and was never really sure of myself,” Wakefield said. “I just decided one day to take a leap of faith.”
She sings country gospel, which Wakefield described as a combination of southern gospel, bluegrass and country.
“I love the sound of country music with the guitars and fiddles,” Wakefield said.
She has written several of her songs and each time looks to capture a meaning that will get the audience thinking about life.
“Country gospel tells the story of the sinner and how he was saved, and I want them to picture the story as they hear the song,” Wakefield said.
One of Wakefield’s personal favorites that she wrote is a song entitled “I Found Grace,” also on her most recent album.
“I think a lot of people can find themselves in that song,” Wakefield said.
Pokana Talahassi music store on U.S. 31 in downtown Clanton celebrated Wakefield’s No. 1 hit during its weekly Thursday night jam session, in which local musicians are invited to participate.
Wakefield’s schedule remains quite busy, as she partners in family businesses that include Mid-South Fabrications in Helena, a trucking company and also serves as a staff writer for Christian Voice Magazine.
“I like to be busy, but my job as music minister at the church takes priority over everything,” Wakefield said.
According to Wakefield, she would love to use her success as a platform to sing or speak at various events throughout the county and help spread her love of music and God to others.
“We try to encourage the kids to get into music, or else the church is going to lose it’s future musicians,” Wakefield said. “Parents need to understand that music gives kids a way to express themselves.