Bobby Ray Sparks, II, son of Molly and Bobby Ray Sparks, Sr., was born February 1973, in Corsicana, Texas. A child prodigy, he began playing the organ when he was three years old. Bobby has studied music privately with his mother and Mrs. Anna Joyce Whitehead. As a young child, he used his gift of music to please the hearts of all who heard him. He played for many area church choirs, musical workshops, and vocal groups during his early years. His music versatility began in the home where his parents, both educators by profession, were also musicians. His mother steered him in the direction of the music of the church. His father, an avid jazzman and jazz musician, demanded that he become well versed in all kinds of music. He was introduced to the music of jazz giants such as Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Dexter Gordan and Miles Davis at an early age.
Bobby Sparks II graduated from Corsicana High School in 1991. After high school graduation, he moved to the Dallas area (Mesquite TX), to study music at Eastfield College. While residing in Mesquite, he became exposed to many other budding musicians, one of whom was Kirk Franklin. Sparks having been an original member of the Kirk Franklin band served as Kirk’s music director from 1992-2005 traveling all over America and to many foreign countries playing for millions of people.
A versatile musician of drums, a little bass guitar and primarily keyboards, Bobby plays all kinds of music. In addition to playing for Kirk Franklin for 20 years, he has worked with other musical giants such as Prince, Herbie Hancock, Stanley Clarke, George Duke, Tower of Power, Marcus Miller, Ray Charles, George Benson, Dave Koz, Lalah Hathaway, Roy Hargrove, Al Jarreau, Les McCann, Rahsaan Patterson, Poogie Bell, Dean Brown, Snarky Puppy, Kirk Whalum, David Sanborn, Nicolas Payton, St. Vincent and the late Wayman Tisdale….. In the Gospel World He has worked with Fred Hammond, John P. Kee, Bishop Paul Morton, CeCe Winans, Donnie McKurklin, Yolanda Adams, Mary Mary, Joe Pace, Shirley Caesar, and V. Michael McKay among many other well-known Gospel musical personalities.
Bobby has also had the distinguished honor of playing with the Dallas-based Emerald City Band as they entertained the President and our country’s leaders at a Christmas Party that was held in the East Room of the White House.
Bobby provides music for radio and television commercials, including Tyra Banks` Top Model reality television show. He also assisted Kirk Franklin in producing the sound track for the movie, Kingdom Come as well as worked on the soundtrack for the The Prince of Egypt, He is a gifted producer with many projects to his credit including the “NuNation” project by Kirk Franklin for which he received a Grammy certificate as co-producer and another one for the “Hello Fear” record, Also a Grammy for Fred Hammond’s “Free To Worship”record…
When Bobby is not touring he is steadily making music, producing projects and performing locally. On Sundays, he serves as organist for Pathway of Life Church, pastored by Pastor Danny Wegman in Dallas TX. He also plays around DFW Metroplex at upscale clubs and he plays for private parties and exclusive events.
In 2003, Bobby was invited back to Eastfield to present a concert. It was at Eastfield that his jazz improvisational skills improved greatly. Proud of his achievements and major accomplishments, Bobby was given the Key To The City of Corsicana during a `Giving Back` concert held in Corsicana. Even more recently, Bobby had the opportunity to return again to his hometown of Corsicana, Texas and present a concert at the Palace Theatre. The concert received rave reviews for the fine quality of musicianship.