Various Artists

Roots of Black Gospel [CD2]

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The second volume in a discount Disky series that was also compiled into a three-disc box, Roots of Black Gospel suffers from the same inconsistency that plagues the other two volumes. The Golden Gate Quartet, one of the most innovative groups in the genre, is rewarded with far too many songs for an introductory treatment of this type, and there's too much emphasis on also-ran groups -- the Blue Chips, the Alphabetical Four, Rev. B.C. Campbell -- who are pleasant but hardly necessary. The highlights are excellent, though, including "Swing Down, Chariot" by the Golden Gate, "Sometimes I Feel Like a Motherless Child" by Paul Robeson, and "Stretch Out" by Sister Rosetta Tharpe and Marie Knight.

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