© 2024 Iowa Public Radio
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Wade In The Water Ep. 16: The Gospel Song Legacy Of Thomas Andrew Dorsey

The Dixie Hummingbirds.
Michael Ochs Archives
Getty Images
The Dixie Hummingbirds.

Wade in the Water is a 26-part series, originally released in 1994, that celebrates African American sacred music and traditions. To learn more about the series, click here . For more episodes click here or listen on the go with the NPR One app.

The "father of gospel music," whose efforts led to an innovative performance style and refashioned existing music to reflect experiences of African Americans who migrated to urban communities.

Song List

  • Staple Singers, "Wade in the Water"
  • Donald Vails and the Celebration Delegation, "Highway to Heaven"
  • Rev. Eugene Smallwood, "Little Wooden Church on a Hill"
  • Sallie Martin Singers, "Old Ship of Zion"
  • Dixie Hummingbirds, "Hide Me in Thy Bosom"
  • 1979 Mass Choir of the National Convention of Gospel Choirs and Choruses, "Let Us Go Back to God"
  • Thomas A. Dorsey, "Second-Handed Woman Blues"
  • Golden Gate Quartet, "If You See My Savior"
  • Tampa Red and Georgia Tom, "But They Got It Fixed, Right On"
  • Sallie Martin, "I'll Tell It Wherever I Go"
  • Thomas A. Dorsey, "Precious Lord"
  • Mahalia Jackson, "Precious Lord"
  • O'Neal Twins, "When I've Done the Best I Can"
  • Brother Joe May, "Search Me Lord"
  • Red Foley, "Peace in the Valley"
  • Soul Stirrers, "Peace in the Valley"
  • Henry Davis Singers, "Peace in the Valley"
  • Smithsonian Institution Conference, "Precious Lord" (NPR Recording)
  • Wade in the Water was produced by Judi Moore Latta and Sonja Williams.

    Stream A Selection Of Songs From The Series

    Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.