(Photo: Courtesy of T.D. Jakes Ministries/The Potter's House)
Mary Mary, Grammy Award-winning gospel music duo, recently premiered the second season of their reality television show and are opening up about featuring strippers on the series, criticism, and the group splitting up.
Mary Mary group members and sisters Erica and Tina Campbell recently opened up to Gospel Talk online radio host Mona Austin about some of the criticism they have received for doing a reality television show, especially after a sneak peek of Season 2 included a stripper at their sister Alana Atkin's bachelorette party.
Erica, 40, spoke up about not paying attention to the critics who only caught a glimpse of a bachelorette party in a preview of the We TV show.
"There's really no nice way to say it. It's my life, this is my family. It's is my truth," Erica told Austin in a recent interview. "My sister was getting married, there was nothing rude or crude. Of course on T.V., it's a clip and you're not sure. People's minds are left to wonder to create whatever they think happened."
The 40-year-old singer explained why she doesn't feel the need to respond to her critics.
"It's a lot of fun and a great time. We don't really take time to respond to critics that much because we'd be talking about something every single day," she said on the Gospel Talk radio show. "When there is something that genuinely hurts people or something that genuinely causes people to go 'wow' then I'll respond to that."
Still, the singer explained why viewers were given a glimpse of strippers at a bachelorette party.
"It is what it is, when you open up the cameras to your life we wanted a true show. We didn't want a fake show, I didn't want this party where we're eating crumpets and tea. Mary is a virgin so we teased her about sex and played and laughed and had a good time," Erica said. "You know, the same thing that any family would do. Everybody that was there grew up in church with me. We're all church girls."
While some people may be wondering why a successful gospel-singing duo would want to reveal their lives on a reality television show, Erica explained her reason for doing so.
"It was our opportunity to let our lives be a witness. People have a lot of misconceptions about what a Christian life should look like," one-half of the gospel singing duo said on the radio show. "Not just ridicule from church people it was opinions from people who are unchurched and their only version of what a Christian life looked like was their grandmother."
Viewers of the television show will also get some insight into the group's struggles trying to stay together. While Erica has been performing solo to give Tina time to rest after giving birth in August, some have been questioning if the duo will split for good.
Tina did not deny the possibility of a group split taking place.
"They're going to have to watch the season to find that out! It is very challenging having two very filled lives that are individual lives," Tina said on Gospel Talk. "We don't have a life of Mary Mary we have a life of Erica and Tina and our husbands and our homes and they're very different. So it can be very challenging trying to maintain one unit that's like a marriage when we're already married at home. So it's hard."
Erica also gave an answer that will force viewers to tune in and find out about the group's future.
"There's a lot of ups and downs, there's a lot of things going on. Sometimes our husbands have different opinions," Erica said. "They're not married to Mary Mary they're married to Erica and Tina. Sometimes they don't always work out in the favor of Mary Mary. Sometimes it works out sometimes it doesn't. I will say this, change is coming."
However, 38-year-old Tina admitted that there is nothing like making and performing music with her sister.
"We do realize that what we have with Mary Mary is special and it's not the same a part," Tina told Gospel Talk.
The Mary Mary television show airs on We TV Thursday nights at 9 p.m. ET.