Kirk Franklin is an American gospel singer, songwriter, music director, and author. With 12 Grammy Awards, more than 20 number 1 hits, and well over 10 million albums sold, Kirk Franklin is without a doubt one of the most remarkable gospel artists of his generation.
The genius of gospel music is described by many as the “Reigning King of Urban Gospel”. Here are the facts you always wanted to know about his personal life.
Early Life and Rise to Fame
Kirk Dewayne Franklin was born on 26 January 1970 in Fort Worth, Texas. His musical talents manifested themselves at a tender age, and at the age of 4, he was enrolled in piano lessons. Franklin also sang in his church choir and became a choirmaster of the church at the age of 12.
Despite the fact that he had “grown up in church”, Franklin was a very rebellious teenager and as a result, he was expelled from school. He later completed his high school education at the Oscar Dean Wyatt High School in Fort Worth, Texas. Broken by the shooting of a close friend, Franklin returned to the church and rejoined his church choir. He also recorded some songs with a gospel group he co-founded. Kirk Franklin eventually caught the attention of music icon Rev. Milton Bingham, who recruited him to lead the choir at the 1990 Gospel Music Workshop of America Convention.
In 1992, Kirk Franklin received his first contract alongside his 17-piece choir “The Family”. The group’s first studio album “Kirk Franklin & The Family” (1993) was a huge success; it went platinum and topped the Billboard Gospel Album Charts for 42 weeks. Kirk Franklin & the Family Christmas (1995) and Whatcha Lookin’ 4 (1996) followed shortly after, for which Franklin won his first Grammy.
He received a second Grammy for the joint work God’s Property by Kirk Franklin’s Nu Nation alongside the gospel choir “God’s Property”. His third came from The Nu Nation Project, which topped the Billboard charts for several weeks. In 2000, Kirk Franklin and other members of the choir “The Family” dropped out after a legal dispute over royalties, signaling the beginning of his solo career.
In 2001, Kirk Franklin worked on the soundtrack for the hit movie Kingdom Come. The following year, the talented singer released the album The Rebirth of Kirk Franklin, which topped the album charts for several weeks. Kirk’s 2005 platinum album Hero won him 2 Grammy Awards, and his 10th studio album The Fight of My Life was released in December 2007.
Kirk Franklin was also featured in the gospel music reality series Sunday Best (2007-2009) and the Bible-themed game shows The American Bible Challenge (2013-14).
Kirk Franklin Family – Wife, Kids, and Brothers
Kirk Franklin is currently married to his long-time lover and best friend Tammy Franklin (Collins). The duo met in the early ’90s when Franklin was just starting his career. Tammy was also a singer at the time, so she moved to Minneapolis to start her own career. The separation strained their relationship, and for several years they remained estranged from each other. However, they got back together in March 1995 and the following year Tammy returned to Dallas, Texas for her wedding. The marriage was finally consummated on January 20, 1996.
At the time of their marriage, both Franklin and his wife had one child each from previous relationships: Kirk’s son Kerrion (born 1988) and Tammy’s daughter Carrington (born 1989). They then had two children together, daughter Kennedy (born 1997) and son Caziah (born 2000).
Kirk Franklin was born to a teenage single mother and never met his biological father. His mother also left him and left the young Franklin to his great-aunt Gertrude, who raised him. Kirk Franklin grew up next to a half-sister, and according to the records we have, he had no other siblings.
His great-aunt Gertrude had several odd jobs to promote the musical talents of her little boy wonder. Franklin’s mother later reunited with her children, but she remained a distant figure in their lives, visiting them only a few times a year.
Is He Gay?
Kirk Franklin’s career as an international gospel music icon currently spans more than 2 decades. During this time, he was known in only one relationship, that with his wife Tammy. Due to his relatively simple relationship history, one can assume that Kirk Franklin is not gay. Furthermore, the gospel singer has never given any indication that he is attracted to his own sex.
However, Franklin does support the LGBT community. In 2015, he offered people in the LGBT community an excuse for the unjust treatment they generally receive in black churches.
Kirk Franklin’s Height
Great gifts actually come in small packages. Kirk Franklin has a physique that differs from his great personality. The international icon of gospel music stands 165 cm (5 feet 4 inches) tall.