Album Reviews

The Blind Boys of Alabama

Go Tell It On The Mountain

Artist:     The Blind Boys of Alabama

Album:     Go Tell It On The Mountain

Label:     Omnivore

Release Date:     11/06/2016


The Blind Boys of Alabama found each other attending elementary school for the blind in 1939. The original founding members, four of whom are now deceased, include Clarence Fountain, Jimmy Carter, George Scott, Johnny Fields, Ollice Thomas and Vel Bozman Traylor.

This album, Go Tell It On The Mountain, originally released in 2003, is a fairly recent contribution to their illustrious career that began in the 1940s. Now in its reissue, listeners enjoy featured bonus tracks “My Lord What a Morning,” and live versions of “Go Tell It on the Mountain” and “Amazing Grace.” “My Lord What a Morning” presents us with the purest form of a cappella, gospel, barbershop music. This minor rendition of “Go Tell It on the Mountain” reveals their blues side. The “Amazing Grace” has a harmony that’s reminiscent of “House of the Rising Sun.”

The cast of notable appearances– Tom Waits, Mavis Staples, Richard Thompson and others– only enhance the original, uplifting gospel spirituality the Blind Boys of Alabama capture in their musical sermons.

“I like that. Now I didn’t say you like it, I said I like it. And if I like it, it’s got to be good.” (Clarence Fountain, live in New York) Do you like it? Love it? Find out!

-Julia Egan

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