SHOUT! Black Gospel Music Moments - Ruth Davis
Ruth Davis of the Davis Sisters was one of gospel’s greatest shouters – as her version of “He’ll Understand and Say ‘Well Done’” will surely attest!
They’re not as well known today as they should be, but there was a time in the 1950s and ‘60s when Ruth Davis and the Davis Sisters rivaled the very best female groups in gospel music – the Caravans, the Ward Singers and the Angelic Gospel Singers.
Though singers came and went, the heart of the Davis clan was big-voiced sister Ruth. She could shout and squall with the likes of June Cheeks or Archie Brownlee and could have easily sung R&B with the likes of Big Maybelle or Dinah Washington. Think of Janis Joplin, only with a deeper, stronger voice.
The Davis Sisters recorded for a variety of labels and released a number of hit songs, including “In the Morning When I Rise,” “Surely God is Able,” “Twelve Gates to the City” and the original versions of two hits for other artists – “Jesus Steps In” and “Too Close to Heaven.” Here’s Ruth’s stirring rendition of the legendary Lucie Campbell song, “He’ll Understand and Say, ‘Well Done.’”
MUSIC: “He’ll Understand and Say ‘Well Done,’” Ruth Davis and the Davis Sisters from WWRL Presents Inspirational Gospel Classics, Side 1, Track 3
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.