Gospel Music

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Stripped of their cultural heritage through slavery, the early Afro-Americans found the Church the only institution able to explain and mollify their new position. The simple life-after-death theology, delivered through par­able preaching and inspirational singing, enabled the Black Churches to flourish through the 19th century. They `Afri­canized' the early Anglican hymns in aural transmission, transmuting and reassembling them into the Negro Spirituals — the call and unison response of 'Swing Low, Sweet Chariot', the long sustained melody of 'Nobody Knows The Trouble' and the syncopated claprhythmic 'Shout All Over God's Heaven'.

The early 20th century upsurge of fundamental, sancti­fied and holiness churches in the dehumanizing industrial ghettos brought ecstatic, testifying shouts, holy dancing and musical instruments into church music. Reflecting this, the pre-depression recording boom waxed a wide range of styles of religious material, from Rev. J. M. Gates' short sermons and answering congregation, to the piano-playing evangelist singer, Arizona Dranes, to the religious blues of guitarist Blind Willie Johnson and the ruggedly harmonised versions of the spirituals by Jubilee Quartets like the Golden Gate and the Norfolk Quartets.

In the Thirties, traditional spirituals were supplanted by new gospel material. Earlier, Rev. Charles A. Tindley had published 'Stand By Me' and 'Understand It Better By and By' and Lucie Campbell produced 'Something Within Me' and 'In The Upper Room', but Thomas A. Dorsey (aka Georgia Tom) is regarded as the Father of Gospel Music. In 1932, he co-founded the National Convention of Gospel Singers which promoted the spread of material like his own `Precious Lord' and 'Peace In The Valley'. With performers like Sallie Martin, Roberta Martin and Mahalia Jackson pushing them, the sentimental, optimistic blue-note ridden gospel numbers swept the nation, finding white acceptance through artists like Red Foley and the Stamps-Baxter Quar­tet.

Though Mahalia was the 'Gospel Queen', others were important. Willie Mae Ford Smith, an instructress at Dor­sey's Conventions, taught many younger singers, like Brother Joe May, the improvising slurs, note bending and rephrasing techniques of gospel, while Sister Rosetta Tharpe took the gospelly blues 'This Train' into the race charts.

 

The golden age for gospel began in 1945.

New independent recording labels like Apollo, King and Specialty prospered issuing gospel material, radio stations featured early morning and Sunday gospel shows and the gospel highway of one-night theatre stands, church benefits and anniversary programmes, was thick with travelling groups. Run by matriarch Gertrude, the Famous Ward Singers, who used daughter Clara's arrangements, Marion Williams' solos and Rev. W. Herbert Brewster's material like `Move On Up A Little Higher' and their rivals, Albertina Walker's Caravans, who nurtured current solo stars including Shirley Caesar, Inez Andrews, Dorothy Norwood, and, more briefly, James Cleveland and Bessie Griffin, featured strong emotional lead singers in front of imaginative background harmonies, usu­ally accompanied by simple piano or organ lines. Clara Ward exerted a considerable stylistic influence on the young

Aretha Franklin, whose first recordings were made in her father's (Rev. C. L. Franklin) New Bethel Church. Others, like the Consolers with ethereal guitar and organ-backed versions of 'heart warming spiritual hymns' like `Waiting For My Child' and the early Staple Singers, of the hillbilly harmony 'Will The Circle Be Unbroken', appealed more to southern audiences.

Male acappella 'quartets' were also developing. Using gos­pel material and a second tenor to complete the four part harmony behind the high clear tenor voice of Rebert Harris, the Soul Stirrers gave gospel and—through Sam Cooke—soul music, one of its lasting styles. Likewise, the contrast of Claude Jeter's falsetto and the harsh shouter leads of the Swan Silvertones presaged the Temptations, while the devil-demolishing ecstatic screams of the Five Blind Boys' Archie Brownlee were picked up by the young James Brown, whose stage movements could be a parody of the frenzied move­ment of Ira Tucker of the Dixie Hummingbirds.

The end of acappella came with the addition of guitarists, like Howard Carroll of the Dixie Hummingbirds, and in the Sixties popular groups like the Mighty Clouds Of Joy and the Violinaires used falsetto harmony behind the preaching lead voices of Joe Ligon and Robert Blair respectively. Now the instrumentation of gospel groups can be as full as soul groups, enabling the Rance Allen Group to rework secular hits, alongside the smooth jubilee hymns of the Harmonising Four or the cool sophisticated homophonic Voices-Supreme.

James Cleveland's 'Love Of God' with the Voices Of Tabernacle and 'Peace Be Still' with the Angelic Choir in the Sixties ushered in the era of choirs and soloists, with his Gospel Music Convention promoting large interdenomina­tional choirs, and the surprising pop success of the Edwin Hawkins Singers' Oh Happy Day'.

Stripped of their cultural heritage through slavery, the early Afro-Americans found the Church the only institution able to explain and mollify their new position. The simple life-after-death... read more »
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Gospel Music

Stripped of their cultural heritage through slavery, the early Afro-Americans found the Church the only institution able to explain and mollify their new position. The simple life-after-death theology, delivered through par­able preaching and inspirational singing, enabled the Black Churches to flourish through the 19th century. They `Afri­canized' the early Anglican hymns in aural transmission, transmuting and reassembling them into the Negro Spirituals — the call and unison response of 'Swing Low, Sweet Chariot', the long sustained melody of 'Nobody Knows The Trouble' and the syncopated claprhythmic 'Shout All Over God's Heaven'.

The early 20th century upsurge of fundamental, sancti­fied and holiness churches in the dehumanizing industrial ghettos brought ecstatic, testifying shouts, holy dancing and musical instruments into church music. Reflecting this, the pre-depression recording boom waxed a wide range of styles of religious material, from Rev. J. M. Gates' short sermons and answering congregation, to the piano-playing evangelist singer, Arizona Dranes, to the religious blues of guitarist Blind Willie Johnson and the ruggedly harmonised versions of the spirituals by Jubilee Quartets like the Golden Gate and the Norfolk Quartets.

In the Thirties, traditional spirituals were supplanted by new gospel material. Earlier, Rev. Charles A. Tindley had published 'Stand By Me' and 'Understand It Better By and By' and Lucie Campbell produced 'Something Within Me' and 'In The Upper Room', but Thomas A. Dorsey (aka Georgia Tom) is regarded as the Father of Gospel Music. In 1932, he co-founded the National Convention of Gospel Singers which promoted the spread of material like his own `Precious Lord' and 'Peace In The Valley'. With performers like Sallie Martin, Roberta Martin and Mahalia Jackson pushing them, the sentimental, optimistic blue-note ridden gospel numbers swept the nation, finding white acceptance through artists like Red Foley and the Stamps-Baxter Quar­tet.

Though Mahalia was the 'Gospel Queen', others were important. Willie Mae Ford Smith, an instructress at Dor­sey's Conventions, taught many younger singers, like Brother Joe May, the improvising slurs, note bending and rephrasing techniques of gospel, while Sister Rosetta Tharpe took the gospelly blues 'This Train' into the race charts.

 

The golden age for gospel began in 1945.

New independent recording labels like Apollo, King and Specialty prospered issuing gospel material, radio stations featured early morning and Sunday gospel shows and the gospel highway of one-night theatre stands, church benefits and anniversary programmes, was thick with travelling groups. Run by matriarch Gertrude, the Famous Ward Singers, who used daughter Clara's arrangements, Marion Williams' solos and Rev. W. Herbert Brewster's material like `Move On Up A Little Higher' and their rivals, Albertina Walker's Caravans, who nurtured current solo stars including Shirley Caesar, Inez Andrews, Dorothy Norwood, and, more briefly, James Cleveland and Bessie Griffin, featured strong emotional lead singers in front of imaginative background harmonies, usu­ally accompanied by simple piano or organ lines. Clara Ward exerted a considerable stylistic influence on the young

Aretha Franklin, whose first recordings were made in her father's (Rev. C. L. Franklin) New Bethel Church. Others, like the Consolers with ethereal guitar and organ-backed versions of 'heart warming spiritual hymns' like `Waiting For My Child' and the early Staple Singers, of the hillbilly harmony 'Will The Circle Be Unbroken', appealed more to southern audiences.

Male acappella 'quartets' were also developing. Using gos­pel material and a second tenor to complete the four part harmony behind the high clear tenor voice of Rebert Harris, the Soul Stirrers gave gospel and—through Sam Cooke—soul music, one of its lasting styles. Likewise, the contrast of Claude Jeter's falsetto and the harsh shouter leads of the Swan Silvertones presaged the Temptations, while the devil-demolishing ecstatic screams of the Five Blind Boys' Archie Brownlee were picked up by the young James Brown, whose stage movements could be a parody of the frenzied move­ment of Ira Tucker of the Dixie Hummingbirds.

The end of acappella came with the addition of guitarists, like Howard Carroll of the Dixie Hummingbirds, and in the Sixties popular groups like the Mighty Clouds Of Joy and the Violinaires used falsetto harmony behind the preaching lead voices of Joe Ligon and Robert Blair respectively. Now the instrumentation of gospel groups can be as full as soul groups, enabling the Rance Allen Group to rework secular hits, alongside the smooth jubilee hymns of the Harmonising Four or the cool sophisticated homophonic Voices-Supreme.

James Cleveland's 'Love Of God' with the Voices Of Tabernacle and 'Peace Be Still' with the Angelic Choir in the Sixties ushered in the era of choirs and soloists, with his Gospel Music Convention promoting large interdenomina­tional choirs, and the surprising pop success of the Edwin Hawkins Singers' Oh Happy Day'.

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Just For You (LP) Aretha Franklin: Just For You (LP) Art-Nr.: LP782757

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(Rat Pack) 16 tracks - 'Columbia' recordings from the early 1960s
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Reach Out (CD, Limited Edition) The Four Tops: Reach Out (CD, Limited Edition) Art-Nr.: CD782100

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(Culture Factory) 12 Tracks - Digisleeve - Limited Edition - Original 1960s Motown Masters!
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(Culture Factory) 12 Tracks - Digisleeve - Limited Edition - Original 1966 Motown Masters!
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The Slave (LP, Red Vinyl) Sparrow, Mighty: The Slave (LP, Red Vinyl) Art-Nr.: LPMH8202

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(Modern Harmonic) 10 tracks, gatefold Bob Marley wurde mit den Worten zitiert: Als ich Mighty Sparrow The Slave singen hörte, wusste ich, was ich mit meiner Musik anfangen wollte. Sparrow kreiert Calypso-Sounds, die so mächtig sind, dass...
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(Trojan) 12 tracks, with printed inner sleeve Released in 1970 by Trojan Records, and although it is called Upsetters, Lee Perry was not involved in its conception and production.
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Ooo La La La - The Epic Anthology (2-CD) Teena Marie: Ooo La La La - The Epic Anthology (2-CD) Art-Nr.: CDSMR5153

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(Cherry Red) 25 tracks Teena Marie war eine US-amerikanische R&B- und Soul-Sängerin, Gitarristin, Komponistin und Produzentin. Zu ihren bekanntesten Aufnahmen zählen "Square Biz" (1981), "Lovergirl" (1984) und "Ooo La La La" (1988). Sie...
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Note By Note (LP, Colored Vinyl, Ltd.) Booker T: Note By Note (LP, Colored Vinyl, Ltd.) Art-Nr.: LPESR15725

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(Edith Steet Records) 10 tracks, colored vinyl (orange), limited Vinyl LP pressing. In an emotional musical journey, Booker T explores new perspectives on the songs that make up the fabric of his musical identity. The album, entitled...
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Aretha (LP, 180g Colored Vinyl, Ltd.) Aretha Franklin: Aretha (LP, 180g Colored Vinyl, Ltd.) Art-Nr.: LPMOV2679

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(Music On Vinyl) 9 tracks, limited and numbered, coloured vinyl (green) The self-titled Aretha Franklin album from 1986 was a successful album, which was characterized by five R&B hits, including the number one hit "I Knew You Were...
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(Mondo) 20 tracks The soundtrack by Scott Bomar to the biographical Netflix comedy "Dolemite Is My Name" by director Craig Brewer about the life of comedy and rap legend Rudy Ray Moore, starring Eddie Murphy. The soundtrack is a tribute...
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(Sundazed Reords) 13 tracks, colored vinyl (gold) On Shelby S. Singleton's SSS International label, some serious bragging rights emerged, including the funky-soaked "There's A Break In The Road" penned by Allen Toussaint, Mickey Murray's...
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(Universal/Spectrum) 65 Tracks - all original master & chart versions! - 3 panel- digipac.
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The Soul Of The Memphis Boys (CD) Various: The Soul Of The Memphis Boys (CD) Art-Nr.: CDCHD1572

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(Ace Records) 24 Tracks - 28 page booklet A showcase of the soulful side of the brilliant American Sound Studio session group, 1967-72, directed by Chips Moman and featuring top guitarist Reggie Young. During the fabulous Highwaymen...
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My Thing Is Your Thing (LP, Colored Vinyl) Bobby Patterson: My Thing Is Your Thing (LP, Colored Vinyl) Art-Nr.: LPMH8214

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(Modern Harmonic) 15 tracks, colored vinyl (white) Come and get it! Dynamic Dallas soul singer Bobby Patterson cut some serious sizzling sides in the mid-60s, including the James Brown refutation of Mama's Got A New Bag Too, the...
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She's All Right With Me! - Girl Group Sounds USA - 1961-1968 (LP) Various: She's All Right With Me! - Girl Group Sounds... Art-Nr.: LPCHD1569

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(Ace Records) 16 tracks We start with a great Rev Lons song that was almost never played - "Whirlwind", recorded in 1965 for producer Gary Paxton, but unreleased until 2004. The Rev-Lons are not the only act on this compilation who...
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You Make Me Feel (CD) Don Bryant: You Make Me Feel (CD) Art-Nr.: CDFP1747

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(Fat Possum) 10 tracks. Here is the third album of the 79-year-old soul star and husband of Ann Peebles, who wrote her a world hit in 1973 with 'I Can't Stand The Rain'. Not a swan song, but rather an age-old Memphis soul masterpiece....
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Live At The Forum (CD) The Teskey Brothers: Live At The Forum (CD) Art-Nr.: CD0861887

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(Universal) 14 tracks, digipack The Teskey Brothers Live At The Forum is the name of the recording, which, as the title suggests, was recorded in November 2019 at the Forum in their hometown of Melbourne, Australia, live to tape. The...
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Ready Or Not - Thom Bell - Philly Soul Arrangements & Productions 1965-1678 (CD) Thom Bell: Ready Or Not - Thom Bell - Philly Soul... Art-Nr.: CDTOP488

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(Ace Records) 23 tracks Along with Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff, Thom Bell was one of the three people responsible for The Sound Of Philadelphia, a lush, orchestrated version of the soul music that dominated the charts in the early to mid...
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Born To Sing (CD) Willie Clayton: Born To Sing (CD) Art-Nr.: CDEND1185

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(Endzone) 14 tracks. Willie Clayton is a singer-songwriter and producer. Like many other black singer-songwriters, he began performing gospel music in church settings as a youngster and then moved into the secular field as a lyricist,...
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(Soul Step) 8 tracks Brian Owens Soul of Cash ein Album von Johnny Cash covern, wie Sie sie noch nie zuvor gehört haben - neu gestaltet von Soul Man Brian Owens. "Owens beweist erfolgreich, dass die Songs von Johnny Cash genauso in den...
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Would She Do That For You?! - Girl Group Sounds USA - 1964-1968 (LP) Various: Would She Do That For You?! - Girl Group Sounds... Art-Nr.: LPCHD1538

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(Ace Records) 14 tracks For those who prefer to play their music on vinyl, an eclectic and beautifully packaged 14-track collection of girl group artifacts from the mid-60s. Compiled and annotated by Mick Patrick, this all-vinyl...
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The Essential (2-CD) Michael Jackson: The Essential (2-CD) Art-Nr.: CDE2K94287

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(Epic) 38 tracks.
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(Sony Music) 61 Original Multi Label Allniter Classics 1966 - 1975! Three Panel Digipac 
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Ultimate Collection (CD) Teena Marie: Ultimate Collection (CD) Art-Nr.: CDHIP541052

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(Hip-O Records) 15 tracks Teena Marie's music is timeless. She has belted out some of the most robust, authentic R&B of the late '70s. This release includes a duet with Rick James. She has had 23 R&B hits, of those 7 were the Top 10. Now...
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Soul Voices - 60s Big Ballads (CD) Various: Soul Voices - 60s Big Ballads (CD) Art-Nr.: CDKEND490

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(Ace Records) 24 tracks Majestic male vocalists singing over subtly orchestrated arrangements of superb songs were the pinnacle of 1960s black music sophistication. Male soul balladeers from the 60s have always been particularly admired....
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Chuck Jackson On Tour (LP, 180g Vinyl, Stereo) Chuck Jackson: Chuck Jackson On Tour (LP, 180g Vinyl, Stereo) Art-Nr.: SLP5427-B

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