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TRANSCRIPT OF CECE WINANS INTERVIEW


Entertainment
Personal Edge: Cece Winans
Paula Zahn

06/08/2000
Fox News: The Edge With Paula Zahn
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ZAHN: On the "Personal EDGE" tonight, Cece Winans. It has been five years since the gospel music star parted professional paths with her brother and singing partner Bebe. Now she is out on her own. She's written an autobiography titled "On a Positive Note." And she certainly has a lot to be positive about, a new album, her own record label, and Sharing the Vision, an organization she founded that provides financial support for nonprofit
agencies.

And here to share her vision with us tonight, among other things, Cece Winans.

Welcome. Good to see you.

CECE WINANS, SINGER: Thank you. Good to see you too.

ZAHN: You know, there has been so much talk lately about the kinds of organizations celebrities attach themselves to. You obviously are very passionate about what you're doing with Sharing the Vision.

WINANS: Oh, yeah.

ZAHN: Did you have trouble convincing people that this really was a sincere interest on your part because most people just roll their eyes, "Oh, here they go again..."

WINANS: Exactly. Right. Exactly.

ZAHN: ... "They got all the money. What else are they going to do to make more fans?"

WINANS: You know, I really didn't worry about that because we do what we do because it's in our heart to do it. And we know that it's making a difference.

So the more you do things, the more people trust you, the more people can see. And so then they along with you help support what you're doing. So we didn't really start out trying to convince people just to do what was on our heart to do.

ZAHN: Give us some quick examples of how you've changed some young people's lives through your organization.

WINANS: Oh, man. Well, we started off with helping families, those who are underprivileged, helping them with Christmas or Thanksgiving or giving clothes or food to eat, different things like that where people are really hurting...

ZAHN: Sure.

WINANS: ... and making that difference. And then also between our music and between just spending time and talking with young women, some were contemplating suicide but decided to give life another chance because they found that people do care and that God is there and God can make all the difference in the world. So there's always something there.

And the different groups that we do support - like for instance My Sister Keeper - which is a young woman's support group that meets every week. I mean, they see people's lives being changed every week.

So it's so many things out there. And a lot of great things are being done.

ZAHN: You are such a believer in giving people second chances. And I don't know if our audience knows this. But you are extremely close to Whitney Houston . We've read so much about her over the last couple of days, the big story in "People" magazine about apparently an intervention her family wanted her to have for a drug problem. What can you tell us about how she's doing, how she's feeling, what she's going through right now?

WINANS: Well, you know, the last time I talked to Whitney, she was doing great. I'm hearing a lot of stuff that's going on now that I really don't know about. But she's a wonderful friend of mine who I pray for. And I would hope everybody would pray for her no matter what the situation is.

And trust me, I'm going to find out. And I'll be there for her for whatever she needs. But she's a wonderful person. And she's in God's hands.

ZAHN: I know because you are so close to her, it must be troubling to hear these stories.

WINANS: Oh, yeah. Oh, yeah. I mean...

ZAHN: Are you worried about her right now?

WINANS: ... Whenever you have a famous friend, you hear a lot of different stories. And I had to learn that after the fact and get down to the truth when I'm able to do that. But I'm there for her, whatever she needs.

ZAHN: Do you think that she does have a drug problem?

WINANS: Do I think she has one? Well, you know, I'd rather not even comment on that because I have to talk with her and see.

ZAHN: But can you confirm for us that her family is very worried about her and they're trying to help her out in any...

WINANS: I can't even confirm that. You know, again, I just want to talk with her and love her and find out exactly what's going on because there's so many things being said.

ZAHN: ... And I know her story is in parallel to some of the young people you're trying to help.

WINANS: Right.

ZAHN: But certainly, it's got to be so difficult for anybody trying to heal themselves when you're in a situation like Whitney Houston ...

WINANS: You know, you know what...

ZAHN: ... and you're on the front page of the newspaper every day, and some of the stuff might not be true.

WINANS: ... The thing is being - it's funny, but when I became real close with Whitney, I realized that I wanted to sell a whole lot of records without being known.

(LAUGHTER)

ZAHN: You didn't want people prying into your private life.

WINANS: You know, it's not an easy thing to be famous. It's not easy at all. And so I had to learn that from the times we were at her baby shower to - you know, it's just an incredible life to have to live.

ZAHN: Do you think to a certain extent she's a target for people? Or do you think some of this stuff is born out of jealousy?

WINANS: Yes. A lot of things are just - it's amazing. It is really amazing, just amazed me totally when I became close friends with Whitney.

ZAHN: We don't want to make it sound like you haven't appreciated your celebrityhood because you doubt know what you've achieved through it. Has there been any down side for you?

WINANS: Any down side, not really. I mean, again, you lose some of your privacy but nothing to be compared with somebody on that level. So it's been a great thing for me because I'm doing what I'm called to do.

ZAHN: In closing tonight, what is your goal in the year to come? I know you're going to continue to try to make money...

WINANS: To reach the world...

ZAHN: ... through your wonderful singing, but...

WINANS: ... To reach the world with the good news of Jesus Christ, to reach the world with love, hope, faith, and save and change some lives.

ZAHN: It sounds like it's pretty easy for you to be positive.

WINANS: Yes it is.

ZAHN: You've been blessed.

WINANS: Yes. God is good.

ZAHN: We've been blessed by hearing your great voice.

WINANS: God is good, thank you.

ZAHN: Cece, thank you very much for joining us...

WINANS: You're welcome. Thanks for having me.

ZAHN: ... Best of luck with your autobiography.

WINANS: Thank you.

ZAHN: The message is a good one. Sometimes it's a little hard for all of us to be positive. But we'll try to think about it for the next two hours at least...

WINANS: You can do it.

ZAHN: ... And we thank you all for joining us very much tonight here on THE EDGE. We hope to see you all again tomorrow night same time same place right here on THE EDGE again.

Thank you for being with us tonight. Good night.

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