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WASHINGTON (AP) -- Gospel singer Israel Houghton jokingly describes himself as a "Half-rican" American.
Houghton says his white mother was only 17 when she shocked her family with the news that she was carrying a black man's baby, and her openly racist father urged her to have an abortion.
She refused, but abused drugs and almost lost custody of Israel before giving her life to God.
On his new CD, "Jesus At The Center," Houghton and his band New Breed reach out to other troubled souls with songs like "It's Not Over."
Israel Houghton is on one of gospel music's biggest tours this week, performing with Kirk Franklin, Marvin Sapp and Donnie McClurkin. The King's Men Tour has shows this week in Cleveland, Chicago, Detroit and Brooklyn, N.Y.
(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)