Cover for BOYER: The Golden Age of Gospel

The Golden Age of Gospel

The best and most definitive history of gospel music in the United States, enhanced by the emotion-packed photos of Lloyd Yearwood

Professional gospel performer, composer, and scholar Horace Clarence Boyer presents the first definitive history of the vibrant, visceral tradition of black gospel music. Originally published as How Sweet the Sound, this authoritative work is beautifully illustrated with Lloyd Yearwood's arresting photographs of gospel's greatest performers backstage and in the heat of performance.

Skillfully blending music history and social context, Boyer traces the development of gospel from its earliest beginnings through the Golden Age (1945-55) and into the 1960s when gospel entered the concert hall. He introduces dozens of the genre's most gifted contributors, from Thomas A. Dorsey and Mahalia Jackson to the Soul Stirrers and Aretha Franklin, evoking their distinctive styles and distinguishing among the characteristic sounds of gospel music in Chicago, Philadelphia, Detroit, St. Louis, and other locations.

Capturing the essence of a thrilling performance tradition, The Golden Age of Gospel clearly establishes gospel's importance as an authentic American art form and a musical statement of profound belief.

"Boyer is generous but always balanced in his presentation of gospel's great performers, discussing them so intelligently and informatively that anyone who loves early and golden age gospel will love his book, too."--Ray Olson, Booklist

"Boyer is the foremost scholar of gospel music. . . . [His] coverage of individuals and ensembles is very rich, and the result is a handsomely produced book useful to both specialists and laypersons at all levels."--Choice

"Boyer infuses his immense knowledge of musical and vocal forms into an engrossing narrative. . . . Superb."--Stephanie Brasley, Multicultural Review

Horace Clarence Boyer, professor emeritus of music at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, is the editor of Lift Every Voice and Sing: An African American Hymnal. Lloyd Yearwood is an award-winning photographer whose work has appeared in numerous magazines, motion pictures, and exhibits.

To order online:

To order by phone:
(800) 621-2736 (USA/Canada)
(773) 702-7000 (International)

Related Titles

previous book next book
Cultural Sustainabilities - Cover
Cultural Sustainabilities

Music, Media, Language, Advocacy

Edited by Timothy J. Cooley

Black Opera - Cover
Black Opera

History, Power, Engagement

Naomi André

Banjo Roots and Branches - Cover
Banjo Roots and Branches

Edited by Robert B. Winans

Dancing Revolution - Cover
Dancing Revolution

Bodies, Space, and Sound in American Cultural History

Christopher J. Smith

The Social Worlds of Nineteenth-Century Chamber Music - Cover
The Social Worlds of Nineteenth-Century Chamber Music

Composers, Consumers, Communities

Marie Sumner Lott

Peggy Glanville-Hicks - Cover
Peggy Glanville-Hicks

Composer and Critic

Suzanne Robinson

Black Music Research Journal - Cover
Black Music Research Journal

Edited by Gayle Murchison

Music and the Moving Image - Cover
Music and the Moving Image

Edited by Gillian B. Anderson & Ronald H. Sadoff

American Music - Cover
American Music

Edited by Gayle Sherwood Magee

Rethinking American Music - Cover
Rethinking American Music

Edited by Tara Browner and Thomas L. Riis

From Scratch - Cover
From Scratch

Writings in Music Theory

James Tenney Edited by Larry Polansky, Lauren Pratt, Robert Wannamaker, and Michael Winter

Jazz Internationalism - Cover
Jazz Internationalism

Literary Afro-Modernism and the Cultural Politics of Black Music

John Lowney

May Irwin - Cover
May Irwin

Singing, Shouting, and the Shadow of Minstrelsy

Sharon Ammen