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Singing in My Soul : Black Gospel Music in a Secular Age - Jerma A. Jackson

Singing in My Soul

Black Gospel Music in a Secular Age

Paperback Published: 19th April 2004
ISBN: 9780807855300
Number Of Pages: 208

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Black gospel music grew from obscure nineteenth-century beginnings to become the leading style of sacred music in black American communities after World War II. Jerma A. Jackson traces the music's unique history, profiling the careers of several singers--particularly Sister Rosetta Tharpe--and demonstrating the important role women played in popularizing gospel.

Female gospel singers initially developed their musical abilities in churches where gospel prevailed as a mode of worship. Few, however, stayed exclusively in the religious realm. As recordings and sheet music pushed gospel into the commercial arena, gospel began to develop a life beyond the church, spreading first among a broad spectrum of African Americans and then to white middle-class audiences. Retail outlets, recording companies, and booking agencies turned gospel into big business, and local church singers emerged as national and international celebrities. Amid these changes, the music acquired increasing significance as a source of black identity.

These successes, however, generated fierce controversy. As gospel gained public visibility and broad commercial appeal, debates broke out over the meaning of the music and its message, raising questions about the virtues of commercialism and material values, the contours of racial identity, and the nature of the sacred. Jackson engages these debates to explore how race, faith, and identity became central questions in twentieth-century African American life.

Industry Reviews

"Engaging for its fresh approach and solid evidentiary base."
-- "Journal of Southern History"
"Emphasizes the fascinating connections between sacred and secular forms of black music. . . . Enlightening."
-- "Ethnomusicology"

Introductionp. 1
Exuberance or restraint : music and religion after reconstructionp. 8
I just do what the lord say : gospel as women's missionary workp. 27
Churches and entrepreneurs : the grassroots campaign for gospelp. 50
With her spirituals in swing : Sister Rosetta Tharpe, gospel, and popular culturep. 77
Between religion and commerce : gospel in the postwar erap. 103
Epiloguep. 133
Notesp. 143
Bibliographyp. 167
Indexp. 185
Table of Contents provided by Blackwell. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780807855300
ISBN-10: 0807855308
Audience: General
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 208
Published: 19th April 2004
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 20.32 x 15.24  x 1.91
Weight (kg): 0.25
Edition Type: New edition

Earn 158 Qantas Points
on this Book