Posted: Monday, March 28, 2016
A pair of Shoals-based singer/songwriters will perform at a charity event next month at the Alabama Auto Show at the Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Center.
Walt Aldridge and Lenny LeBlanc will join Richie McDonald, lead vocalist for the the country band Lonestar, during the musical event, “The Heart Behind The Music,” which is part of an April 7 charity preview event.
The Auto show is April 7-10.
The preview event will allow attendees to visit the auto show before its public opening. It will also include a dinner and entertainment by Aldridge, LeBlanc and McDonald.
For ticket information on the preview benefit or attending the Alabama Auto Show, go to alabamaautoshow.com, or call 256-701-2749.
FLORENCE — A former Muscle Shoals session player turned inspirational artist will be appearing next month on the internationally broadcast DAYSTAR Television Network.
Lenny LeBlanc, a 2003 Dove Award winner and former member of LeBlanc and Carr, will appear on the “Marcus and Joni” morning show, which LeBlanc described as a show similar to “Good Morning America.”
The show will be broadcast live at 11 a.m. March 9.
“I’ll share my story and play a few songs,” LeBlanc said.
LeBlanc became a Christian in 1981, and has been in inspirational artist ever since, writing popular Christian songs such as “Above All” and “There is None Like You.” He also penned county hits including “You First” and “Treat Her Right.”
LeBlanc and Pete Carr scored a hit record with “Falling,” which was named one of Billboards all-time favorite Top 40 hits.
LeBlanc said he also will appear on the “Joni Table Talk” show, which is a topic-oriented show done in a format similar to “The View.” That show will be taped for a later release.
According to a news release, Marcus and Joni is hosted by the network’s founders, husband and wife Marcus and Joni Lamb. The show features testimonies of guests from the professional sports, business and music worlds.
LeBlanc said one of the show’s producers was a stage manager for a praise and worship show LeBlanc performed in with several country music stars at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, Tennessee. The producer knew a friend of LeBlanc’s and contacted him about appearing on the show.
Launched Dec. 31, 1997, DAYSTAR is a 24-hour network committed to sharing the gospel locally and throughout the world through all media forms, according to a DAYSTAR news release.
LeBlanc said he arrived in the Shoals in 1973 and found work with the local recording studios originally as a bass player. He then began writing songs and performing.
“I was a pop artist until 1981,” he said.
It was in 1981 that a friend of LeBlanc’s from Florida who had become a drug smuggler called him and said, “Lenny, I’m going to heaven and I want you to go with me.”
“I started reading the Bible for the first time ever,” Le Blanc said. “God revealed himself to me through the Scriptures. My heart began to change.”
At the time, he was signed to Muscle Shoals Sound Records with artists like Russell Smith of the Amazing Rhythm Aces, Levon Helm and Delbert McClinton.
LeBlanc said he lost the desire to write pop songs, and subsequently lost his record deal.
“My whole career and income was tied to that contract,” he said.
It took a couple years, but LeBlanc bounced back as a popular Christian artist who has had songs translated into dozens of languages.
“The international audience has been good for me,” LeBlanc said. “They know me more overseas than in the states. I can go to Kenya and get recognized in restaurants. I’ve been very successful, and I’m very thankful for it.”`