White Rockers in Search of Soul Salvation



4 comments
Paul Harvey

This piece of mine comes from today's Religion Dispatches -- I'm posting a snip below and you can follow the link from there.

Fifty-eight-year old rock veteran John Mellencamp recorded his latest record live, in three different sacred spaces — a legendary studio (Sun Studios in Memphis), a hotel room in San Antonio (where blues legend Robert Johnson cut some epochal sides in 1936), and, most significant for this article, the First African Baptist Church in Savannah, Georgia.

The first two are hallowed ground of American musical recording history. The third is the oldest black Baptist congregation in the country; so far as I know, it has no history of being used as a backdrop for popular recordings. All three, though, have deep mythical meanings for white Americans in search of authenticity. . . .

4 comments:

Matt Sutton at: September 26, 2010 at 11:26 AM said...

Great piece Paul!

Mark Ashurst-McGee at: September 27, 2010 at 8:55 AM said...

In his recent NPR interview, Cougar related that he and his wife were recently baptized in that church.

Edward J Blum at: September 27, 2010 at 9:09 AM said...

amazing article Paul!!!

Paul Harvey at: September 27, 2010 at 3:18 PM said...

Dear readers: Mark Oppenheimer, who writes for the NY Times and elsewhere, has a passionate, and pretty funny, dissent against my piece, well worth reading, here:

http://markoppenheimer.com/front-page/john-mellencamp-is-not-exploiting-black-heritage.html

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