Twinkie Clark

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Elbernita "Twinkie" Clark-Terrell
Birth nameElbernita Clark
Born (1954-11-15) November 15, 1954 (age 64)[1]
Detroit, Michigan
OriginDetroit, Michigan, U.S.
Occupation(s)Singer, songwriter, producer, arranger, organist, pianist
InstrumentsVocals, organ, piano
Years active1966–present
LabelsSound of Gospel, Tyscot, Crystal Rose, Tribute, Verity, EMI Gospel
Associated actsThe Clark Sisters, Dorinda Clark Cole, Jacky Clark Chisholm, Karen Clark Sheard, Mattie Moss Clark

Elbernita "Twinkie" Clark-Terrell (born November 15, 1954) is an American gospel singer, composer, musician, and evangelist, as well as member of the Hammond organ Hall of Fame.[2] She is a member of The Clark Sisters, an influential gospel vocal ensemble active since the late 1960s.


The Clark Sisters[edit]

Clark is the leader of the gospel group the Clark Sisters, which included Gospel musicians such as Karen Clark-Sheard, Dr. Dorinda Clark-Cole, Dr. Denise Clark-Bradford , and Jacky Clark-Chisholm. Trained and inspired by their mother, the late Dr. Mattie Moss Clark, Twinkie learned and mastered instruments such as the kawai keyboard, baldwin piano, and hammond organ. Ultimately, upon Dr. Clark’s retirement, she was designated to carry on the Clark Sisters vocal group, solely responsible for all writings, producing, and rehearsals. She wrote majority of the music for the group. She is recognized by her sisters as THE clark sister... known for creating the riffs, runs, growls, and scats that we hear from the sisters today. The group is mostly known for their hit singles, "You Brought the Sunshine", “Jesus is a Love Song”, "Expect Your Miracle" and "Is My Living In Vain", all written by Twinkie Clark. In 2016 the group was honored at the Essence festival.[citation needed]

Solo career[edit]

Since leaving The Clark Sisters she has recorded several solo albums intermittently including Comin' Home, Masterpiece ( Produced by top gospel/jazz artist and musician, Ben Tankard. In 2002, she recorded her first live solo album Live in Charlotte.[3] Twinkie's son John Terrell raps on the album. Its success warranted another live effort, the Asaph Ward-produced Home Once Again: Live in Detroit, two years later. She is recognized in the Hall of fame as the “Queen of Hammond B-3 Organ”. She also released a collaboration project with the Florida A&M University Gospel Choir called Twinkie Clark-Terrell Presents the Florida A&M University Gospel Choir which also was a mainstay in the Billboard Gospel top 10 in late 1996. Also having a very active career in the 1990s, Clark was always a welcoming special guest to tons of gospel concerts around the country. Clark has done various engagements all over the world including traveling to Abidjan, West Africa in 1994.

Musical influence[edit]

Clark's influences include jazz, reggae, classical, funk and blues. This is evidenced by listening to her first two solo albums Praise Belongs to God and Ye Shall Receive Power recorded for Sound of Gospel Records while still with The Clark Sisters.[1]


  • Praise Belongs To God (Sound of Gospel, 1979)
  • Ye Shall Receive Power (Sound of Gospel, 1981)
  • Comin' Home (Tyscot, 1992) (No. 40 US Gospel)
  • Masterpiece (Tribute/Verity, 1996) (No. 19 US Gospel)
  • Twinkie Clark-Terrell presents FAMU Gospel Choir (Crystal Rose, 1996) (No. 10 US Gospel)
  • Twinkie Clark and Friends: Live In Charlotte N.C. (Verity, 2002) (No. 10 US Gospel)
  • Home Once Again: Live In Detroit (Verity, 2004) (No. 66 US R&B/Hip-Hop) (No. 9 US Gospel)
  • Praise & Worship (Verity/Legacy, 2006) (Compilation)
  • With Humility (Larry Clark Gospel, 2011) (No. 14 US Gospel)
  • Live and Unplugged 2013 (No. 16 US Gospel)

Notable singles[edit]


  1. ^ a b Gay, Gregory (September 1, 2005). "Twinkie Clark -- A Look Back".
  2. ^
  3. ^ Clark, Melanie (August 2002). "Twinkie Clark Live in Charlotte Album Review".

External links[edit]