Magazine article New Internationalist

This May Be My Last Time Singing

Magazine article New Internationalist

This May Be My Last Time Singing

Article excerpt

This May Be My Last Time Singing

by Various Artists Tompkins Square, 3 x CDs)

That African-American gospel music is the wellspring of much of Western popular music is not news. Moreover, gospel - whether born from desperation or a communal affirmation of divine hope - was the beat to which American civil rights danced.

There are no Arethas, Staple Singers or Little Richards on This May Be My Last Time Singing: Raw African-American Gospel on 45rpm 1957-1982. Its three CDs of 70-plus sanctified songs - the product of compiler Mike McGonigal's trawls through the thrift stores of the US - originally had limited releases as 45rpm singles. That said, there are plenty of stars contained here, all with names most people haven't heard of- such as Brother Grady Coffee, the Clefs of Calvary and the Fantastic Angels boy band, whose 'Jesus Been Good' has Jackson Five quality. The best songs come straight from church itself where the call and response of the congregation is electrifying. …

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