Mahalia Jackson: Queen of Gospel Song (Impact Books- Biographies Series)

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9780531112281: Mahalia Jackson: Queen of Gospel Song (Impact Books- Biographies Series)
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A biography of Mahalia Jackson traces the life and career of America's most famous gospel singer, from her New Orleans youth, through her early struggles, to her rise to international fame.

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From School Library Journal:

Grade 6 Up?A touching, even moving, biography that examines the impact the "Queen of Gospel Song" had on audiences. Beginning with an overview of her legacy, Gourse describes her subject's poor childhood in New Orleans, her rise to prominence in the world of gospel song, and her involvement with the civil rights movement. Particularly impressive is the emphasis given to the artist's desire to sing only inspirational music rather than the more profitable selections of the entertainment world. The author doesn't shy away from the more unflattering aspects of Jackson's life, particularly the firing of her longtime pianist, Mildred Falls. Gourse is diligent in acknowledging sources and notes discrepancies that turned up in her research. The book includes a center insert of black-and-white photographs of Jackson's milieu. Charles K. Wolfe's Mahalia Jackson (Chelsea, 1990) provides a nearly identical overview, with somewhat less detail especially in its recounting of the performer's participation in the civil rights movement. It includes more photographs than this book, but Gourse tells the story with the passion that was Mahalia Jackson herself.?Tim Wadham, Dallas Public Library, TX
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist:

Gr. 6^-10. Many believe she could have been a blockbuster blues star, but Mahalia Jackson preferred the gospel music she grew up with, beginning at the Mount Moriah Baptist Church in New Orleans in the 1910s and 1920s. Years later, as she electrified Carnegie Hall, sang at President Kennedy's inaugural gala, and cut hit albums for Columbia Records, among many other triumphs, she still identified her music with her religion, a faith that led Jackson through the grinding poverty and racism of her youth. Gourse has penned a lively and balanced portrait of the ebullient, warm, and ever down-to-earth singer. And because Jackson was active in the civil rights movement, her story is a fascinating piece of American social as well as musical history. Although heavily based on other sources, mainly the singer's autobiography, Movin' on Up (1966), this should prove to be a popular YA biography. Black-and-white photos; bibliography; selected discography. Anne O'Malley

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