History

Steven’s  musical journey began when his mother sang hymns and gospel pearls and he would “try” play the piano along with her. She encouraged his musical talent and interest. Soon was enrolled in piano school but realizing it wasn’t helping much (because he only enjoyed playing gospel music), she allowed him to stop. He then began learning easily at a practical pace when playing for church services or practicing on his own.

At age 12, Steven became youth choir pianist for 1st Pentecostal Church of Jesus Christ of Hunter’s Point (San Francisco, CA) under Bishop Moses Green (also a musician). Bishop Green encouraged youth to use their gifts and talents for the Lord. He believed allowing youth to participate in church activities and services would be the cornerstone for their future Christian commitment. 1st Pentecostal became a hotbed for many future church leaders (Rev Ernie Jackson, Min Louis Dawson, Min Leroy & Bennie Henderson) to name a few. In 1967 the Lord called Deacon Elmore Roberts to organize the All Nations Pentecostal Church in Tracy, CA. It was under his father’s leadership that Steven received and confessed Christ, committing his life to God.

For the next 8 years Steven practiced and played at every opportunity. The All Nations church was small and had old instruments. The saints were musically patient, as this was God’s apprentice ground for Steven’s spiritual and musical growth. His progress was consistent. Learning came by listening, much practice and asking questions at every opportunity. He played for whoever he could, whenever he could, not knowing nor enquiring about compensation. It was his honor and joy to play in the service of the Lord. When his dad could not take him, he could be seen, sometimes late at night, catching the bus to or from a worship service or revival which he played for (sometimes at far away as Fresno & Sacramento). Religious radio and gospel recordings also helped him tremendously as he bought every album could. He was influenced by choirs of James Cleveland, Charles Watkins, Mattie-Moss Clarke, Edwin Hawkins & Helen Stephens, including keyboard extraordinaires such as Alfred Bolden, Billy Preston, Herbert Pickard and LG Scott. As the Lord blessed, Steven progressed and yielded his gift. God opened doors and opportunities. 1976 God gifted him with songwriting. His songs have since been recorded by Daryl Coley, Walter Hawkins, James Cleveland, Byron Cage, Vanessa Bell, Bishop Otis Floyd, Bishop Jeff Banks, Thomas Whitfield, Melba Moore, Kelly Price, Donald Vails, New Jersey Mass, Aaron Lopez & Choir, GMWA Mass Choir, GMWA Men, NorCal Mass, Elizabeth Ayala, Rev Fleetwood Irving, Rev Reginald Finley, Lighthouse Singers of Marin, Voices of Christ and Dorothy Love-Thornton and Metro Choir to name a few. His songs can be found in the Catholic Youth Hymnal and Hymns of Germany. For over 25 years he has received a steady flow of income royalties through his publishing company from his music.

His record since 1977 as Minister of Music for Elisabeth Baptist Church (Richmond CA), 2nd Baptist Church (Vallejo CA), Peniel Baptist (San Pablo CA), NorCal Mass Choir and currently Pilgrim Baptist Church (San Mateo CA, Dr Larry W. Ellis-Pastor) is exemplary. In 1987, the Gospel Music Workshop of America (GMWA), placed him in LIP development & apprenticeship program for 5 years offering training into the administrative areas of the convention. At his completion (1992), he was officially named to the Supervisory Staff of the GMWA Mass Choir (Dr. Rodena Preston, Minister of Music). In 1996 Steven was appointed as general director of James Cleveland Gospel Chorus.     

Present

Steven now conducts 10 -15 gospel music workshops annually and celebrated #500 in EL Dorado, Ark in 1999. Aside from music, his schedule remains full. Daily responsibilities includes being senior tech at Mills-Peninsula Health Center (San Mateo CA), employed there for 34 years. Steven gives God all the glory for “favor” more than 35 years that has allowed him to travel the world ministering in gospel music. He has never been unemployed since graduating from high school.

Being a noted Minister of Music is part of his life. He is also a husband and father- very blessed with a family that fully supports his ministry.

Steven shall never forget the hands that carefully guided, trained, shaped and directed his life. He is grateful for God’s lovingkindness, abundant mercy and grace through Jesus Christ. He is thankful for and to- his belated parents (Elmore and Annie Mae) who gave biblical and spiritual guidance, along with direction, correction, teaching, training and encouragement. Steven says: “I am the beneficiary of their humble benevolence to God”.

Favorite Scripture

“…. if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and thus has righteousness and with the mouth one confesses and thus has salvation” (Romans 10: 9-10). His testimony is: “Only God can take a small bit of talent and a cup of availability, sprinkle on his anointing, stir-it with his spoon of love….and that cup overflows”

 Steven’s testimony:

“God can take a small bit of talent in a large cup of availability, sprinkle it with his anointing, stir it with his spoon of love and that cup will overflow! Little becomes much when placed in the master’s hands.”

TO  GOD  BE  HIGH  GLORY!
 

Place of Birth Oakland, California
Education Hayward High School, Chabot College, Sonoma State University, San Jose School of Orthopedics
Occupation Songwriter - Publisher - Lecturer - Musician
Gospel Music Clinician, Medical Technician
Favorite Foods Everything
Favorite Music Gospel, Inspirational, Contemporary & Jazz
Enjoyment Reading, writing, movies and driving on a nice day