Gospel Music

Legendary Blind Boys of Alabama vocalist George Scott dies at 75

This sad news comes courtesy of Elder Mack Mason and the text is from a press release on www.blindboys.com. The Black Gospel Blog extends its sincerest and most profound condolences to Mr. Scott’s family and friends. * * * George Scott, a founding member of the Blind Boys of Alabama gospel group, died in his sleep Wednesday morning, March 9, 2005 at his home in Durham, NC. He was 75. Scott was the booming baritone voice of the group, which formed at the Alabama Institute for the Negro Blind in the late 1930s. Since then, Scott and his bandmates traveled ...

Read More »

Essential Gospel – Classic Recordings: No. 124

“Angels, Angels, Angels!” Edna Gallmon Cooke with the Mt. Vernon Men’s ChorusDeLuxe1949 Another DeLuxe classic, one catalog number away from TBGB’s No. 123 “Essential Gospel” feature by the Spirit of Memphis Quartet. God must have been smiling particularly warmly on Linden, New Jersey’s DeLuxe Records in the spring of 1949. Before the “Sweetheart of the Potomac” was waxing her classic sermonettes for Nashboro, before she was collaborating with the Radio Four, even before she was singing with the Young People’s Choir of the Springfield Baptist Church and making records for Dave Miller’s Gospel Records, Madame Edna Gallmon Cooke collaborated with ...

Read More »

Former Cleveland Singer issues new CD

A Light to this World – Gene Viale3rd Generation Records 3GRCD-245-01www.geneviale.net2005 Forty-one years ago, Gene Viale, a handsome seventeen year-old San Franciscan of Puerto Rican-American descent, was invited to join Rev. James Cleveland’s talented Cleveland Singers. Viale traveled with the group when singing the gospel “together” was a dangerous thing, especially in the Jim Crow South. He sang tenor on the Cleveland Singers’ Savoy LP Heaven That Will Be Good Enough for Me and later recorded solo LPs for Checker Records (1968) and Camella Records (1976 & 1984), as well as a single for Atco (1972). On his latest release, ...

Read More »

Hit of the Week: “I’m Not Tired Yet” – Mississippi Mass Choir

TBGB’s Hit Pick of the Week for March 6, 2005: “I’m Not Tired Yet” – Mississippi Mass Choir Plenty is being written in the trades on the Mississippi Mass Choir’s latest project, Not by Might Nor by Power, and every word of the praise is well deserved. Of particular note is the ensemble’s rendering of “I’m Not Tired Yet,” a rousing, energetic gospel song that is deserving of radio rotation. This is call and response, lively, pulse-pounding gospel music the way Thomas A. Dorsey intended it to be. Three cheers for Mississippi Mass!

Read More »

Presiding Bishop of COGIC Singing in the Old Time Way

Bishop G.E. Patterson, Presiding Bishop of the Church of God in Christ who was elected to a second term this past November, has given everyone who loves traditional gospel music a beautiful gift: Bishop G.E. Patterson & Congregation Singing The Old Time Way. This is a wonderful, wonderful project, a COGIC Greatest Hits. Recorded live in Memphis, Tennessee — COGIC world headquarters — the two-disc package presents more than 40 classic gospel songs and hymns sung, as many gospel artists like to say, “the way they used to be sung in our church back home.” The energetic, passionate singing by ...

Read More »

Essential Gospel – Classic Recordings: Week 123

“I’m Happy in the Service of the Lord”/”My Life is in His Hands”The Memphis Gospel Singers (aka Spirit of Memphis Quartet)DeLuxe 32211949[“Happy…” also available on Rounder CD: Bless my Bones: Memphis Gospel Radio – the Fifties] Record collectors: be on the lookout for this wonderful 78 rpm disc when perusing stacks of shellac at your local used vinyl store, antique shop, record show, or in record auctions. The Spirit of Memphis Quartet’s second disc, a scorching double-sider from 1949 that lists the group as The Memphis Gospel Singers, pre-dates its more popular King and Peacock sessions and demonstrated the quartet’s ...

Read More »

Pollard’s top 10 gospel records from Detroit

From the Detroit Free Press, February 18, 2005: Gospel radio DJ and historian Deborah Smith Pollard names the 10 most significant gospel songs or albums to come out of Detroit, which is considered one of the world’s great gospel-producing cities: The Voices of Tabernacle, “The Love of God” (1960)“This is a song that makes the Rev. James Cleveland an acclaimed national soloist. It allows the country to hear the disciplined Detroit chorale sound. The Voices of Tabernacle were unbelievable.” Mattie Moss Clark and the Southwest Michigan Choir of the Church of God in Christ, “Climbing Up the Mountain” (1965)“This is ...

Read More »

Gospel’s Got the Blues: Op-Ed from the New York Times

From the New York Times, February 15, 2005: Gospel’s Got the BluesBy ROBERT DARDEN Waco, Tex. AT the Grammy awards on Sunday, viewers saw the marriage of old-time gospel and new: the classic artists Mavis Staples and the Blind Boys of Alabama performed a medley with a young musician, Kanye West, that included Mr. West’s gospel-tinged hip-hop song, “Jesus Walks.” Blessed with a rock-solid foundation, contemporary gospel is thriving. In the past decade, new releases have been selling copies in the millions – a major milestone in a musical genre that emerged in the 1930’s, when the songwriter Thomas Dorsey ...

Read More »

Congratulations to the 2005 Grammy Winners!

The Black Gospel Blog wishes to congratulate the following gospel artists on receiving “the hardware” at the most recent Grammy Awards: Traditional Soul Gospel Album: “There Will Be a Light,” Ben Harper and The Blind Boys of Alabama. For gentlemen who have been around long enough to have cut loads of 78 rpms, they definitely deserve each and every one of their Grammies. They may soon need an even bigger trophy cabinet to hold them all! Contemporary Soul Gospel Album: “Nothing Without You,” Smokie Norful. We Chicagoans in particular can cheer for one of our own walking away with this ...

Read More »