Carlton Burgess, Monique Spivey and Joseph Holland rehearse 'Love Never Gives Up' for its live debut June 27 on National HIV testing Day.

*Songwriter-composer Carlton Burgess found another way to use his voice in AIDS awareness, reports Tampa Bay Online.

The Tampa native, founder of the Burgess School of the Arts in Ybor City, just released his latest original song, “Love Never Gives Up.” Burgess enlisted three friends – Monica Smith Spivey, Dana Mackey and Joseph Holland – to join him on the inspirational, pop-influenced gospel recording.

Sales of the $5 CD will go to benefit charities worldwide that focus on HIV and AIDS. Locally, Burgess selected Francis House, a nonprofit day respite center for people living the disease and their families. It provides free services that address the spiritual, emotional and physical aspects of the disease.

Burgess felt compelled to do something that would bring attention to the ravages of HIV and AIDS, particularly in the black community. Since music is both his passion and profession, he expressed his feelings in a song.

“When I wrote the lyrics, I got very emotional, very tearful, remembering all the great people with so much talent who have lost their lives to this,” he says. “For those who are still living with it, we have to love them unconditionally. We can’t be judgmental; we can’t throw away people in our society who are dealing with it.”

The song also carries a message important to Burgess: God never gives up, either. Anyone living with HIV/AIDS needs to know that God hasn’t abandoned them, he says.

Read more at Tampa Bay Online.