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DAMIEN SNEED with fellow band members and performers, during the “We Shall Overcome Tour” that played at the August Wilson Center, Jan. 15. (Photos by Courier photographer J.L. Martello)

The question now is, what can’t Damien Sneed do?

He’s a pianist, organist, conductor, composer, producer, arranger, vocal coach and arts educator.

He’s worked with the legends, including Aretha Franklin, Wynton Marsalis, Jessye Norman, Stevie Wonder, Diana Ross, and Ashford & Simpson.

Sneed brought his many talents to the August Wilson Center, Jan. 15, for his “We Shall Overcome Tour,” in which he showcased repertoire from across Black music traditions that electrified generations of civil rights activists with interwoven spoken word from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s recorded speeches.

Sneed was the 2014 recipient of the prestigious Sphinx Medal of Excellence honor, presented annually to emerging Black leaders in classical music.

Sneed has also served as music director for gospel artists such as The Clark Sisters, Donnie McClurkin, Hezekiah Walker, Marvin Sapp, Karen Clark Sheard, and Kim Burrell.

Sneed hails from Augusta, Georgia, and earned a Bachelor of Music-Piano Performance from Howard University and a Master of Music in Music Technology: Scoring for Film and Multimedia from New York University.

He graduated with his doctorate in Orchestral Conducting from the University of Southern California late last year.

 

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