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SHOUT! Black Gospel Music Moments - Marion Williams

“Go Where I Send Thee” is one of the many highlights of the Broadway musical, Black Nativity.

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Marion Williams and the Stars of Faith - Go Where I Send Thee

Welcome to Shout! Black Gospel Music Moments. I’m Robert Darden.

Black Nativity is one of the great Broadway musicals ever. Debuting in late 1962 with an all-Black cast, this gospel music re-telling of the birth of Jesus was a hit in the U.S. and the U.K. and the Vee-Jay soundtrack stayed on the charts for years.

Black Nativity was the first of several African American musicals featuring arrangements by the legendary gospel star Prof. Alex Bradford. But what it is best remembered for today are the sizzling duets between Marion Williams and Princess Stewart. Williams may be my favorite all-time female gospel singer and there is – quite literally – nothing she couldn’t do with her powerful, multi-octave voice. And Stewart stayed with her every step of the way.

You still hear their fabulous versions of “Mary, What You Gonna Call That Pretty Little Baby” and “Wasn’t That a Mighty Day” from time to time. But my money, nothing tops their scintillating performances on this manic version of “Go Where I Send Thee.”

MUSIC: “Go Where I Send Thee,” Marion Williams and the Stars of Faith from Black Nativity, 45

I’m Robert Darden … “Shout! Black Gospel Music Moments” is produced by KWBU, the Black Gospel Music Restoration Project at Baylor University Libraries and is funded by generous support from the Prichard Foundation.

Robert F. Darden is the author of two dozen books, most recently: Nothing But Love in God’s Water, Volume II: Black Sacred Music from Sit-In to Resurrection City (Penn State University Press, 2016); Nothing But Love in God’s Water, Volume I: Black Sacred Music from the Civil War to the Civil Rights Movement(Penn State University Press, 2014); Jesus Laughed: The Redemptive Power of Humor(Abingdon Press, 2008), Reluctant Prophets and Clueless Disciples: Understanding the Bible by Telling Its Stories(Abingdon Press, 2006); and People Get Ready! A New History of Black Gospel Music(Continuum/Bloomsbury, 2004).