On a very sad note: Madame Hulah Gene Dunklin Hurley of Detroit, Michigan passed away Wednesday, January 25. Gospel scholar David Jones told TBGB that she was in the hospital for a routine operation, experienced some post-op complications that may not have been diagnosed properly, and suffered a massive heart attack.
Hulah Gene was a member of Rev. James Lofton’s Church of Our Prayer Choir (“Great Day,” Prosperity and Vee Jay, 1954) and a regular soloist with Rev. Charles Craig’s great Voices of Tabernacle Choir. Her high soprano voice could be heard soaring above the choir. The song she is most remembered for, and one she reprised for the Detroit Remembers project on the S.O.G. label, is “Jesus Will.”
Later, Hulah Gene and her daughter Carolyne recorded a number of singles and LPs for Savoy Records. Recently, she was director of music at New Liberty Baptist Church in Detroit.
In November 2004, Hulah Gene was a guest on WLUW’s “Gospel Memories.” We will rebroadcast that interview on the February 5 “Gospel Memories” program as a tribute to the friendly lady with the coloratura voice whom we will all miss dearly.