Larry Bland & the Volunteer Choir helped us launch the Richmond Folk Festival in 2008, when they were celebrating their 40th anniversary. Now they are back to celebrate their 50th anniversary.
Larry Bland & the Volunteer Choir, based at the Second Baptist Church, are a Richmond institution. In a region rich in gospel tradition, this remarkable ensemble—now celebrating its 50th anniversary at the Richmond Folk Festival—has attained a unique status. Recognized as a trailblazer in gospel music presentation, Bland combined elegant and powerful renditions of traditional gospel songs with costuming and precision choreography to create the “show choir,” an innovation that has brought him national recognition.