STYLE: Gospel RATING OUR PRODUCT CODE: 3910-641 LABEL: Harmony 088561771324 FORMAT: CD Album ITEMS: 1
Reviewed by Jonathan Evans
When this dropped onto the mat I knew I needed some expert help. Luckily I have just met up with Steve - an expert in the field who helped me out. I knew that Mahalia was one of the greatest (if not THE greatest) of female gospel singers but my knowledge stopped there. According to Steve, she was "The Queen Of Gospel" and dominated black gospel music with her powerful voice for over 40 years and this CD is a good example of her work for anyone listening for the first time. From the driving beat of "Joshua Fit The Battle Of Jericho" to the slower "His Eye Is On The Sparrow" she demonstrates her natural feel for gospel music. What is unusual is the inclusion of the secular song "Summertime" as we have been taught that Mahalia recorded gospel and nothing else. On this CD she shows her ability to crossover into the blues/soul style, and could have probably become one of the greatest blues singers - joining others like Bessie Smith, Aretha Franklin and Sam Cooke - who like Mahalia, all had their roots in gospel. However, Mahalia knew that her God-given gift was to sing the gospel, which she did all around the world for almost half a century. This CD is ideal for anyone wishing to experience her voice for the first time.
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