Napoleon Williams & True Friends True Praise
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Napoleon Williams & True Friends True Praise

Band Christian Gospel


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"Review by Dorothea Merriweather"

December 2006

Minister Napoleon Williams has masterfully orchestrated his musical and ministerial gifts into a unique culmination of traditional gospel music with a splash of contemporary savvy! While you search to see whom his style resembles, you can see the choral influence of a Lamar Campbell or a John P. Kee, but he doesn’t imitate. He has created an original work that embraces the history of gospel music with a Holy Spirit-led presentation! He and TFTP are truly lifting up the name of Jesus with their first release and title cut, Use Me As You Will. The lyrics are about true worship. The music is about Jesus. With every song, you find a new reason to praise Him. Timeless, songs from this project such as The Only Living God and Secret Place will lead you into the presence of the living God and encourage your heart to worship. At the same time, I Feel Good, R U Ready, and Oh How I Love Jesus will take you to work. Minister Williams, you’re right. Indianapolis has some of the best gospel talent in the nation!

Comparable artists: Lamar Campbell and the Spirit of Praise, Byron Cage.


"Review by Jennifer Belot"

April 2006

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It is said that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. If this adage holds true, then Minister Williams will be remembered for some time to come as one of the music mentors and models of Hoosier Town. Napoleon Williams & True Friends True Praise (TFTP) have been compared to some of the standout gospel choirs of recent memory including John P Kee and Lamar Campbell. Their traditional chorale style tempered with contemporary instrumentation caresses the ear and gently ministers to the heart of the listener like few today. Their “earnest desire to minister to the lost by sharing the message of God's unconditional and undying love through scripturally based, uplifting worship music” is apparent in their melodious incantations.

Choir director Napoleon Williams developed a love for music that was honed by his grandmother and aunt who respectively instilled in him the gifts for performance and playing music. Having been versed in the art of music, Williams went on to make music his breadwinning talent, becoming the Minister of Music at Mt Olive Baptist Church as well as the celebrated gospel choir instructor at Cathedral High School in Indianapolis.

Borne of a desire to further use his talents in the advancement of the Good News, Minister Napoleon Williams inaugurated the twenty-voice True Friends True Praise Choir in April 2004. Since then TFTP has grown to become one of the standout choirs assembled in the area, culminating in USE ME AS YOU WILL, their debut recording project now available locally and online at

The slightly jazzed up Are You Ready is a contemporized choir track that poses the question as to the readiness of the Saints of God for His imminent return on the clouds of glory. Enthused chorale voices echo the biblical promise found in the pages of Matthew “Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh.”

Also drawing inspiration from the Book of Life is Secret Place, based on the ninety-first Psalm; it is a song of steadfast assurance in the protection of God’s shadow. Possibly the most well-known and most recited poem of the Bible, the twenty-third Psalm ‘s The Lord Is My Shepherd is presented in its purely classical form with the rich soprano of Gloria Bradford-Jones and Angelo Bridges on organ lending a rich texture to the symphonic arrangement.

A very wise friend of mine once told me that a savvy choir director knows how to showcase the various talents of all its members, thus giving more color and vivacity to any chorale project. In addition to writing credits on more than half of the songs on the album, Minister Williams also spotlights the members of TFTP by letting their vocal talents shine as featured soloists. If I were to show any bias, I would choose as standout performances, Michele West on the title track, Use Me As You Will in beautiful balladry and the worshipful candor of Lawrence Gamble in The Anointing.

Calling not only on his choir members to manifest their talents, Minister Williams also solicited fellow independent artist William Rimson (of William Rimson & LPC) on Never Will I Give Up, a joyous, hand-clapping Sunday-morning church song and DaWayne Coleman as the featured soloist on The Only Living God. As a true admirer of the intricacies of piano, this song stood out for me as one of the most elegant pieces on this project. Particularly impressive to me was the overall vocal restraint of the choir that elevated this song to a state of understated worshipful poignancy, almost graceful.

“I trust in God, I know He cares for me, on mountain bleak or on the rolling sea; Though billows roll, He keeps my soul, My Heavenly Father watches over me.” The familiar lyrics of the traditional hymn, My Father Watches Over Me (I Trust In God) is given new life with Caribbean undertones in the tradition of old-school John P Kee. Another revamped traditional hymn was Oh How I Love Jesus, re-flavored into a modernized urban adaptation of the traditional version.

For lovers of traditional choir music, True Friends True Praise is a welcomed postscript to the tapestry of modern gospel music. Their uncomplicated style is a throwback to the heyday of the gospel chorale style that my generation grew up on. And the emulations of vintage Tri-City Singers and New Life Community Choir, which can be heard in their musicianship shows an acute ear for superior arrangements. These up and coming ministers embody the words of John 4 in their style and apparent zeal for the Word ”But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth…” And in that, Napoleon Williams & TFTP are setting themselves up for God to use each of them as He will.

"Reviews from customers at"

WONDEFUL! Great music, great CD!
Reviewer: Deanna Smith
Wow! This is a great independent artist! I couldn't believe how the clips sounded. Won't be surprised to see this one in the mainstream someday!

Absolutely great! I love this CD and recommend anyone who loves gospel music to buy it!
Reviewer: Tammie Brighton
I love the rich full sound the choir has. Reminds me of the old time gospel singers from back in the day. The music is slammin'! I really love track #4, it encourages my soul!
- CD Baby

"Another Sensational Review!"

July 2, 2006

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Indianapolis, Indiana serves as the birthplace for another choral entry into the gospel music world. It’s Napoleon Williams & True Friends True Praise who present their debut release, titled Use Me As You Will.

The 16-track effort, released independently, builds on a strong choral vibe and has the potential to quickly become a favorite amongst church choirs across the nation.

Williams and his aggregation are a relatively new entry into the industry with all of two years’ experience under their belts as artists. However, Williams is no novice to music, serving as Minister of Music in Indianapolis’ Mt. Olive Baptist Church and doubling as choral instructor of a high school gospel choir. The scholastic aspect of his musicianship shines through in this project with traditional numbers like “Never Will I Give Up” and the infectious anthem “The Lord Is My Shepherd”.

Other standout cuts include “Live 4 Jesus” and “The Only Living God”, a ten-minute piece spread out over three different tracks that is simply stellar. The arrangement of this track, coupled with the fantastic vocals of Dwayne Coleman, make the song a definite hit.

The honesty and integrity of the group shines through as Williams and company deliver a solid introduction to their recording career.

Reviewed by Gerard Bonner -

"We're On Internet Radio"

Our music is in rotation since June 2006 on

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"Gospel at the Walker"

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Jan. 26, 2006

One of Indianapolis' national landmarks commemorates a landmark event with the first Madame Walker Gospel Celebration.

The show, which Bruce Williams, vice president of public relations & marketing communications for the theatre, said "will become an annual event," features a collection of some of the best local and national artists practicing gospel today.

And show organizers hope the event will bring more "people into the (Indiana Avenue) district," Williams said. "We're excited to have this event because there are many legacies on Indiana Avenue, of course the Jazz legacy . . . but we also want to perpetuate the Gospel legacy."

According to Williams, Max Siegel, president of Verity Records, helped to secure the talent for this inaugural performance.

Siegel will be critical to "developing this program," Williams said.

This year's headliners are Napoleon Williams and True Friends True Praise (currently supporting their disc "Use Me As You Will"), while Teresateri Anderson and Eastern Star Church Recording Choir and Dance Ministry round out the music.

Christian comedian Melissa Davenport also is set to perform.

While this year's celebration originally had a cover charge, late schedule changes resulted in free admission.

All the more reason to celebrate, if you ask us.

-- Troy Brownfield

- InTake Weekly

"In Case You Missed It Feature"

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Use Me As You Will-released March 2005
NWJ Ministries/PoLo Records, LLC
Distributed by Central South Distribution, Inc.-Nashville, TN


Feeling a bit camera shy


Minister Napoleon Williams, born and raised in Indianapolis, is known throughout the city for his spectacular choral direction style and jazzy personality. This anointed young man has found his niche as a vocal trainer, composer, actor, and choral instructor. He is the Minister of Music at the prestigious Mt. Olive Baptist Church, one of the city's largest baptist churches with a congregation of more than 2000, and reigns supreme as the Gospel Choir Instructor of Cathedral High School in Indianapolis. He is also involved in community theater, and has starred in local productions with the American Cabaret Theatre; in shows such as Amazing Gospel, The Fabulous Fifties, and A Christmas Carol.

Minister Williams developed a love for God's music through the nurturing of his maternal grandmother, Mrs. Myrtle Rhodes. She would take him to choir rehearsals as a young lad, and have him lead songs in the choir. His favorite aunt started him playing the piano and from there, Minister Williams has been unstoppable in creating, arranging and singing heavenly melodies.

Because of his unfailing generosity and compassion for his fellowman, Minister Williams received the Outstanding Service Award in July 2004 from Mayor Bart Peterson's office, and the Spirit of Humanity Award , a local renowned recognition for his meritorious contributions in support of church-community relations.

Minister Williams founded True Friends True Praise in early 2004 based upon a vision he received from God instructing him to bring this eclectic group of singers together and record. Within three months of its conception, NAPOLEON WILLIAMS & TRUE FRIENDS TRUE PRAISE recorded their debut CD, "Use Me As You Will". This new project has been described as a unique culmination of traditional gospel music with a splash of contemporary savvy!

This wonderfully talented group has taken their hometown of Indianapolis by storm! They’ve appeared twice on their local TBN segment of ‘Praise the Lord’, and opened for gospel greats such as Tye Tribbett & GA, The Williams Brothers, and Doc McKenzie & The Hi-Lites. Currently, they are the GRAND PRIZE WINNER of the 2006 AtlantaFest Talent Search!

“Use Me As You Will” is just the beginning of their journey as a rising star in the christian music community!

Tiffanie Bridges-Business Manager 317-679-4452