Tamela and David Mann are known the world over as gospel music icons and co-stars of many Tyler Perry plays, movies and television shows.
While the world knows their names, their roots are in North Texas.
“I’m from here. Grew up in Fort Worth” Tamela Mann said. “I’m a true Texan. I don’t want to live anywhere else, but Texas. I’ve been singing since I was 8 – started in church.”
That 8-year-old has come a long way, with her Grammy to her name, 9 #1 Billboard Gospel Airplay hit songs and countless fans.
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David Mann was born in East Texas but grew up in Fort Worth’s Stop Six neighborhood. Music was always on his mind as well.
They are gospel music’s power couple and household names for families across the country.
“It all started with Black music. Both of us are deeply rooted in the church and that branched off into starting a professional career in music,” David said. “Which because of the professional career in music – lead to the television, the movies and all of that stuff. It was our deep love for music that started this.”
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They can still be found in their old neighborhood on weekends when they are not on the road or shooting films and television.
“To me, it gives inspiration for kids to say – ‘if I did it, you can do it too.’ And that’s the goal that you want to reach to inspire them,” Tamela said. “Just because you live in this box doesn’t mean you have to stay in this box.”
“We’re not running from where we came from. I know some people come from there and they run from that,” David said. “Those are our people.”
Music is in the air in Fort Worth. Along with the Manns, Kirk Franklin and Leon Bridges are from Fort Worth.
“This place is just rooted in music. You look at the people that come through,” David said. “There is just so much talent in this area.”