Marsalis Duane Weatherspoon – Musician, Speaker and Public Servant – proudly hails from Hot Springs, Arkansas. From the start, his mother, an evangelist missionary, and his father, an ordained elder and musician, instilled a deep love of faith, music and service.

Weatherspoon grew up listening to his father, Darnell Weatherspoon, play vinyls at his business Miracle Electronics, a record store and repair shop. He began playing piano at age seven and, by the age of thirteen, he became his church’s principal organist. He attended Hot Springs High School where he played clarinet in the marching band and got an early start at studying music theory through the International Baccalaureate (IB) Program. He then enrolled at Henderson State University in Arkadelphia, Arkansas where he received his Bachelor of Music in Composition In 2012. As an undergraduate he studied applied organ, voice, and piano and sang with the Concert Choir, Chamber Chorale, Opera Workshop on a vocal scholarship.

For the past year, he has taught Vocal Music for the Jessieville School District. From 2016 to 2023, he taught at Hot Springs School District in both vocal and instrumental areas. He has formerly served as the Dean of the Applied Studies Institute of the Arkansas First Jurisdiction Music Department as well as Minister of Music for the Malvern District of the Church of God in Christ. He maintains a private studio where he teaches piano, organ, and voice.

Weatherspoon grew up at his home church St. Phillips Church of God in Christ under the late Pastor T.J. Smith. In, 2014, Weatherspoon announced his acceptance of his call to the ministry to Pastor Richard Harper and gave his first sermon “No Shame in My Game.” On October 14, 2017, Bishop Jewel R. Withers Jr., Prelate of the Arkansas First Jurisdiction, ordained him an Elder in the Church of God in Christ, Inc. He currently attends Living Waters Church of God in Christ and serves as the Minister of Music and an Associate Elder.

While at Henderson, he involved himself heavily in campus life. Inducted into the Ronald E. McNair Scholars Program, he went on to present research at the 2012 Conference of the National Association of African American Studies (NAAAS). He has spoken at various venues and to diverse audiences. In and out of the church. Black and white. Young and old. He also served as Director Angelic Voices of Christ Gospel Choir, Vice President of the Black Students Association, Resident Assistant and work study student in the Office of Admissions.

When it comes to a heart for service, Weatherspoon gets it honest. In 2015, his mother Andrea Paschal Weatherspoon founded Promiseland Outreach Ministries, Inc., a faith-based nonprofit. His grandfather John Paschal (1939-2001) came to prominence as a civil rights leader in the community by becoming President and founding member of the Council for the Liberation of Blacks (CLOB) in 1969. In 2016 Weatherspoon conceived of the “My Favorite Things” concert, a concert that raised money for the Difference Makers of Hot Springs, a local nonprofit. His community involvement includes:

  • Arts Academy of Learning (AAOLINC), former board member
  • Gateway Community Association, member
  • People Helping Others Excel By Example (P.H.O.E.B.E.), former board member

For his community involvement, he received the Volunteer Trailblazer Award from the Webb Community Center and the Jesse D. Hawkins Lions Club in 2017. In 2023, The Sentinel Record selected him as a “Millenial Making a Difference

A Life Member of the NAACP, he proudly serves as President of the Hot Springs Branch, Unit #6013. Among his proudest achievements as President are:

  • championing vaccine equity during the COVID-19 pandemic by speaking to press about the need and assisting with vaccine clinics.
  • organizing a peace vigil to commemorate the murder of George Floyd.
  • calling for the continuation of the Garland County Desegregation Agreement after the seven school districts in Garland County filed a motion to dissolve it.

At numerous national conventions, he has represented the Branch, the Arkansas State Conference and Region VI as a registered delegate. On the state level, he serves as Second Vice President and has served on several committees, including:

  • Advance Resolutions (2024 – present)
  • Convention (2023)
  • Freedom Fund (Chair) (2023)
  • Legal Redress (2024 – present)
  • Young Adult Standing Committee (Chair) (2019-21)

Weatherspoon also has the distinction of becoming the first Arkansan to complete the NextGen Young Professional Leadership Program. NextGen “provides comprehensive leadership and advocacy training for young adults on a mission to become the next generation of civil rights leaders. Participants network with peers, establish strong leadership skills, and deepen their understanding of issues impacting the Black community. Successful graduates become boots on the ground their communities and local NAACP branches, sustaining the fight for equality for all.”

From 2020-2022, he served as President of the Agape Multicultural Ecumenical Network (A.M.E.N.), a consortium of pastors, ministers and other faith leaders, organized to address the needs of the community through prayer, outreach and other programs. Ministers banded together to form A.M.E.N. in the wake of violence that scourged the city of Hot Springs summer 2019. Through awareness and prevention programs, it hopes to empower churches to: confront the issues of violence, suicide and homelessness; promote education, mental health and wellness; and advocate for women, children and the less fortunate.

While at Henderson State, Weatherspoon pledged Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc, the first intercollegiate Black Greek-letter organization by way of the Theta Kappa undergraduate chapter, and recently joined as a Brother of the Pi Nu Lambda alumni chapter.

The Rise Above Alcohol & Drugs (RAAD) program recently featured Weatherspoon in an ad campaign which included a billboard on Highway 270 and print ads in The Sentinel Record and The Springs magazine. Arkansas’ RAAD campaign shares “drug prevention information with community stakeholders, school leaders, faith-based groups and business leaders.”

In partnership with the Garland County Library, he hosted a monthly talk show called Perceptions of Color. Every month, the series explored the African American experience. Guests share insights into race, religion, history, culture and a host of other topics. Minister Cheryl Batts, founder of People Helping Others Excel by Example and historian, encouraged him, saying it was time to “pass on the baton.”

Weatherspoon calls himself an Evangelist for Free and Open Source Software (FOSS). He has used Linux as his “daily driver,” or primary operating system, since 2016. In 2022, he was recognized as a “Developer Do-Gooder” and awarded the Shubhra Kar LiFT Scholarship from the Linux Foundation.

Taking after his dad, an avid technophile and entrepreneur, Weatherspoon founded PNEUMA 3 Solutions (P3S) in 2015. With the mantra “INform. INnovate. INspire.,” P3S helps small businesses and nonprofits harness the power of technology, especially Linux and open-source software, to achieve their mission and vision. Services include websites, email marketing, social media, customer relationship management (CRM), groupware (email, contacts and calendar), and payment processing.

For everything he has accomplished in life, Weatherspoon gives all the glory to God. He models himself after King David who one of Saul’s servants described in 1 Samuel 16:8 as “cunning in playing, a mighty valiant man, and a man of war, and prudent in matters, and a comely person, and the LORD is with him.”