- When I Get Home Rev. James Cleveland & The Cleveland Singers 3:03
I’m heading out for about 10 day’s vacation tomorrow, so I’m loading up the posts for the coming days in one fell swoop right now. I thought I’d concentrate on James Cleveland songs. I’ve found a whole bunch of songs from Cleveland singing with various choirs, some he founded, others he just sang with. I’ve also included some songs from various Gospel Music Workshop of America annual conventions, many of which feature James Cleveland. And then, just to mix it up, I’m throwing in a non-Cleveland song or two…just because. Ciao!
- When The Saints Go Marching In James Cleveland and the Southern California Community Choir 2:14
A nice old time song from Chicago’s own Dr. Charles G. Hayes & The Cosmopolitan Church Choir. The song was written by the late Willie Neal “The Country Boy” Johnson, a long time member of the famous quartet, The Gospel Keynotes (and later, The New Gospel Keynotes). The vamp has that gospel quartet feel and sound to it.
- Lord I Thank You Dr. Charles G. Hayes & The Cosmopolitian Church Choir 5:52
I can’t believe I’ve never posted THIS song either!! This is a wonderful live version of the classic gospel song, “There Is No Way”. The more well know versions of this song are by Rickie Dillard and New G, and Rev. Milton Brunson and The Thompson Community Choir, but in my humble opinion, this version is as good as it gets. The choir is fantastic and the direction amazing as the dynamics of the song will show you. And the POWER of the choir is wonderful…the first stanza of the opening chorus just GRABS you and pulls you in.
- There Is No Way [Live] Patrick Lundy & The Ministers of Music 5:32
I can’t believe I’ve yet to post this song; it is one of James Cleveland’s very best. The song was originally recorded in 1963 and released as the title cut on his “Peace Be Still” album with The Angelic Choir of the First Baptist Church of Nutley, NJ.
This particular track is from an album Cleveland recorded many years later (1984) while in concert with the Donnie Harper’s New Jersey Mass Choir. To me it’s almost better than the original.
- Peace Be Still Rev. James Cleveland & The Cleveland Singers with The New Jersey Mass Choir 8:16
The reference to the late Martin Luther King at near the end of the song (7:00) is both moving and a bit heart breaking given the state of race relations in the U.S. today. It is also poignant as stories of the destruction in Texas from hurricane Harvey continue to flood in (yes, pun intended, sorry).
I have a Special Gift for you today. A wonderful (or should I say Marvelous) song from the late, great Walter Hawkins’ Love Alive V recording released in 2001.
I was listening to my iPod yesterday when this song came on. I don’t remember ever downloading it or hearing it before, but it grabbed me from the beginning and just got better and better. I haven’t checked the album credits, but I’m 99% sure the lead is sung by Yvette Flunder; you can’t miss her gravelly voice, and some of the lyrics she uses on the fill during the vamp are straight from her song “There’s Power In His Name“. Enjoy!!
- Special Gift Walter Hawkins 5:10
The O’Neal Twins had a distinctive and unique sound. From 1960 – 1980 they were hugely popular putting out 20 some odd albums. In 1969, the O’Neals were voted the “World’s Greatest Gospel Duo” by the National Association of Television and Radio Artists. They have both passed away now, but their music lives on. If you care to know more, read their bio on the COGIC website…the link is below. (p.s. Sorry about the audio quality; it sounded worse and I added filters and equalization to make it sound better.You can’t make gold from straw.)
- Make Your Love Known The O'Neal Twins & The First Baptist Church Hamilton Park Mass Choi 4:21
This song really deserves a listen. It runs almost 8 minutes, but it’s big, powerful and beautiful. (Give it a chance; it starts off quietly, but wait a bit.) As for the choir, it is magnificent, which is not surprising of a choir from Howard University in Washington, D.C.
- The Word Of God The Howard University Gospel Choir 7:46
Recorded in 1995, the song was written by Rev. Nolan Williams, Jr. (No, I never had heard the name either). But Rev. Williams is an interesting man. Here is part of his bio:
Rev. Nolan Williams, Jr., is a preacher and biblical scholar, composer and musical prodigy. Rev. Williams is a graduate of Oberlin College with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Music and he later received his Master of Divinity from Howard University. He is a former adjunct professor of Howard University School of Music. Rev. Williams served as Chief Music Editor of the landmark ecumenical publication, the African American Heritage Hymnal. This project, published in 2001, has now sold more than 300,000 copies worldwide and has been fittingly affirmed by noted musicologist, Dr. Wyatt Tee Walker, as “the most important addition to Protestant hymnody within the past century.”
Great song from Rev. Maceo Woods and The Christian Tabernacle Baptist Church Choir from Chicago Il. Christian Tabernacle Baptist Church was one of the churches that helped put Chicago gospel in the spotlight in the ’60’s – ’80s.
- Testify Rev. Maceo Woods & Christian Tabernacle 3:30
Happy Eclipse Day everyone! The forecast is for sunshine and clear skies all day, so we’ll get a good view of the 60% totality here in Boston. (2:30PM)
This song should get you going this morning. It’s like it is one big Holy Dance from start to finished. I was exhausted by the end! 😉
- Oh Zion The Metropolitan Spiritual Church of Christ Mass Choir 5:41
Oh, and just because sunshine (or lack therefore) is the topic of today, I’m reposting The Clark Sister’s classic hit, “Jesus Brought The Sunshine”. Have a great day.
- Jesus Brought The Sunshine The Clark Sisters 5:46