In June, a massacre occurred at Charleston, South Carolina’s Mother Emanuel A.M.E., one of the South’s oldest black congregations. As part of the Shining a Light concert special addressing racial progress in America, Pharrell gave a powerful, motivating performance of his song “Freedom” at the church where the shooting occurred.
Joined by the congregation’s choir, “Freedom” transformed from a R&B track to a full-on gospel anthem. The entire church joined in on the performance as they clapped along.
While in South Carolina, the singer also walked through a historic slave market for Shining a Light: Conversations on Race in America, a special that will follow the two-hour Shining a Light: A Concert for Progress in America, airing on A+E Networks (A&E, History, Lifetime, FYI, LMN, H2) on November 20th at 8/7c. Artists like Bruce Springsteen, John Legend, Nicki Minaj and Sting joined together for unique duets at the sites of many recent conversations on racial progress — Charleston, Ferguson, Baltimore — as well as Los Angeles’ Shrine Auditorium.