By Robert M. Marovich

In A urban referred to as Heaven, gospel announcer and tune historian Robert Marovich shines a mild at the humble origins of an impressive style and its imperative bond to the town the place it discovered its voice: Chicago.
Marovich follows gospel track from early hymns and camp conferences in the course of the nice Migration that introduced it to Chicago. In time, the tune grew into the sanctified soundtrack of the city's mainline black Protestant church buildings. as well as drawing on print media and ephemera, Marovich mines hours of interviews with approximately fifty artists, ministers, and historians--as good as discussions with kin and pals of earlier gospel pioneers--to get well many forgotten singers, musicians, songwriters, and leaders. He additionally examines how an absence of financial chance bred an entrepreneurial spirit that fueled gospel music's upward thrust to acceptance and opened a gate to social mobility for a couple of its practitioners. As Marovich indicates, gospel track expressed a craving for freedom from earthly pains, racial prejudice, and life's hardships. in any case, it proved to be a legitimate too effective and too joyous for even church partitions to hold.

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It was just amazing. Whooo, she could play! ”63 Dranes also played around Dallas and at the annual COGIC Holy Convocation in Memphis. Reverend Crouch recommended the sightless musician to OKeh A&R man Richard M. 64 Elmer Fearn, president of Consolidated Music Publishing, was sufficiently intrigued to write Dranes through Crouch. His letter of May 4, 1926, states in part, “We have heard of you as a pianist and your excellent rendition of spiritual songs. ” OKeh added one caveat: “We are bringing you to Chicago to make test records first.

He, too, had participated in the Azusa Street Revival and witnessed firsthand the power of the nascent Pentecostal movement. So convinced was Roberts in glossolalia as a sign of spirit baptism that he was among the ministers who stood with Mason after the latter parted ways with Charles Price Jones. 14 Around 1914, Mason developed a strategy for denominational growth that included planting COGIC churches in northern cities with significant numbers of new southern migrants. Chicago was on the short list.

For the first time on a Dranes session, OKeh added a mandolin player. The mandolin/piano accompaniment and chugging rhythm on “I Shall Wear a Crown” gave the song the energetic propulsion of a jug band without the jug. 77 Although Dranes never recorded for OKeh after July 1928, prewar blues and sacred music experts speculate that she is the piano accompanist on two discs recorded in Dallas, Texas, in 1928 and 1929. 78 A year later, Rev. 79 Further, “Bye and Bye We’re Going to See the King,” the song introducing Lenley’s sermon, “Lord, Who Shall Abide in Thy Tabernacle,” was recorded for OKeh by Dranes.

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