TBR — Richmond, VA – November 15, 2020 — Beloved Richmond Legend, Musician and Gospel choir director Larry Bland has transitioned from this life to Heavenly Rewards. It was back in August when Mr. Bland sent out a personal e-mail to close friends, associates and family members to let them know that he was battling a terminal illness. Only three months later, on Friday morning, November 13th Mr. Bland lost his battle with Stage 4 Cancer. Mr. Bland was 67 years old.
Mr. Bland was known for being a meticulous leader, as he directed the “Volunteer Choir” for 47 years. Under his leadership and direction, the group toured extensively and were recognized as one of the premiere groups nationally that introduced and made popular the concept of “Gospel Show Choir”.
Mr. Bland worked closely with numerous community related programs and was a highly respected Musician, Arts Administrator, and Producer of Special Events. He has received numerous awards for his direction of the June Jubilee Festival, Theatre performances and Artistic Contributions.
In addition to annual appearances as a part of the City of Richmond, Department of Parks and Recreation’s summer music series at the Dogwood Dell Amphitheater, Larry Bland and the Volunteer Choir also participated in major events at the Wolf Trap Amphitheater and Washington, D.C.’s Constitution Hall and Mellon Auditorium.
Bland delivered his last concert with the choir in 2018.
Former choir members and friends say he was a blessing to everyone he came in contact with from local Richmonder’s to fans around the world.
During his final months, Bland said it was “humbling” to see the community’s support.
Larry Bland directed the Volunteer Choir for 47 years. They not only delivered some of the best Gospel Music on this side of Heaven but they also entertained, inspired and comforted people through their music.
He is survived by three god sons: his Volunteer Choir Family and many other relatives and friends. Remains rest at Joseph Jenkins Jr. Funeral Home where he can be viewed Wednesday from 11 to 7 and Thursday from 11 to 7. Online video tribute can be viewed at Jenkinsjr.com. Due to the governor’s recent declaration, funeral services will be private (service not at the funeral home). It can be viewed online at Jenkins Funeral Home Facebook Page or at jenkinsjr.com
Truly, Richmond, VA has lost a Legend!
Also check out Virginia State University’s Homecoming Tribute to Larry Bland Here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VUW2gSTeM5g&feature=youtu.be
(Photo by JR Davis)