Memphis Gospel: Complete Works (1927-1929)

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Arwulf Arwulf
In 1998, Document released a Memphis Gospel collection filled with 24 historic recordings made during the years 1927-1929. The album opens on powerhouse Pentecostal footing with four titles released under the name of Rev. Sister Mary M. Nelson, assisted by John Davis and Clarence Nelson, who may have handled some of the lead preaching, as most of the harsh, shrill delivery suggests maleness while the female voice is mainly heard in a supportive role. After more than ten minutes of intense holy rolling, Lonnie McIntorsh comes across as comparatively mild-mannered, vigorously strumming his guitar while singing directly from the heart. Most of the rest of this album is ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Arwulf Arwulf
In 1998, Document released a Memphis Gospel collection filled with 24 historic recordings made during the years 1927-1929. The album opens on powerhouse Pentecostal footing with four titles released under the name of Rev. Sister Mary M. Nelson, assisted by John Davis and Clarence Nelson, who may have handled some of the lead preaching, as most of the harsh, shrill delivery suggests maleness while the female voice is mainly heard in a supportive role. After more than ten minutes of intense holy rolling, Lonnie McIntorsh comes across as comparatively mild-mannered, vigorously strumming his guitar while singing directly from the heart. Most of the rest of this album is charged with gutsy, gale-force religious fervor. Tracks 9-14 are credited to Elders McIntorsh & Edwards assisted by Sisters Johnson & Taylor, but anyone familiar with Elder Richard Bryant's Sanctified Singers could easily mistake one for the other, and there may have been substantial cross-pollination between the two groups. Tracks 15-18 are by impassioned evangelist Reverend Johnny Blakey with backing by Bessie Johnson & the Sanctified Singers. In 1995, 14 of Blakey's recordings were reissued by Document on one CD with eight tracks by Rev. M.L. Gibson. Four of his titles are included here and two more may be found on Preachers & Congregations, Vol.1. This is unfortunate as it spreads Blakey's legacy over three loosely related albums rather than making all of his devotional efforts available on one disc. "No Room at the Hotel," "Key to the Kingdom," "One Day," and "The Whole World in His Hand" were sung by Bessie Johnson & the Sanctified Singers, with full-throated vocals, handclapping, and a touch of washboard that suggests links with the Memphis blues, hokum, and jug band scene. The final two tracks, which are a bit gentler and more restrained, feature Bessie Johnson & the Sanctified Singers accompanied by guitarist Will Shade, who was in fact a cardinal member of the world famous Memphis Jug Band. This collection should be regarded as a companion volume to Document's equally amazing anthology Memphis Sanctified Jug Bands 1928-1930. Fully smitten enthusiasts may even wish to spring for the Dust-to-Digital box set Goodbye, Babylon. Because music like this can really grow on you, and a lot of it has resurfaced and been reissued.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 7/28/1998
  • Label: Document
  • UPC: 788518507227
  • Catalog Number: 5072

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 The Royal Telephone - Rev. Sister Mary M. Nelson (2:38)
  2. 2 Judgment - Rev. Sister Mary M. Nelson (2:22)
  3. 3 The Seal of God - Rev. Sister Mary M. Nelson (2:38)
  4. 4 Isaiah-LV - Rev. Sister Mary M. Nelson (2:43)
  5. 5 Sleep on, Mother Sleep On - Lonnie McIntorsh (3:05)
  6. 6 The Lion and the Tribes of Judah - Lonnie McIntorsh (3:04)
  7. 7 Arise and Shine - Lonnie McIntorsh (3:03)
  8. 8 How Much I Owe - Lonnie McIntorsh (3:01)
  9. 9 What Kind of Man Jesus Is (2:53)
  10. 10 Since I Laid My Burden Down (3:14)
  11. 11 The 1927 Flood (3:07)
  12. 12 The Latter Rain Is Fall (3:12)
  13. 13 Take a Stand (3:09)
  14. 14 Behold! The King Shall Reign (3:00)
  15. 15 King of Kings - Rev. Johnny Blakey (3:14)
  16. 16 Jesus Was Here on Business - Rev. Johnny Blakey (3:05)
  17. 17 Warming by the Devil's Fire - Rev. Johnny Blakey (3:17)
  18. 18 The Devil Is Loose in the World - Rev. Johnny Blakey (3:22)
  19. 19 No Room at the Hotel - Bessie Johnson (3:04)
  20. 20 Key to the Kingdom - Bessie Johnson (2:58)
  21. 21 One Day - Bessie Johnson (3:11)
  22. 22 The Whole World in His Hand - Bessie Johnson (2:57)
  23. 23 The Great Reaping Day - Bessie Johnson (2:47)
  24. 24 He's Got Better Things for You - Bessie Johnson (2:54)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
John Davis Vocals
Rev. Johnny Blakey Vocals, Speech/Speaker/Speaking Part
Bessie Johnson Guitar, Tambourine, Vocals, Hand Clapping
The Elders McIntorsh & Edwards' Sanctified Singers Vocals
Lonnie McIntorsh Guitar, Vocals
Clarence Nelson Vocals
Rev. Sister Mary M. Nelson Vocals
Will Shade Guitar
Sally Sumler Accordion, Vocals
B.E. Taylor Guitar, Accordion, Tambourine, Vocals
Memphis Sanctified Singers Vocals, Group
John Davis Vocals
B Taylor Hand Clapping
Technical Credits
Lonnie McIntorsh Composer
Rev. Sister Mary M. Nelson Contributor
Johnny Parth Producer
Ray Funk Liner Notes
Traditional Composer
W.R. Calaway Composer
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