Monday, July 12, 2010

Send Him Up Proper - Mr. Walter Hawkins

I do not go to church. I am neither save or unsaved. I am loved without somebody else telling me so or quantifying how much or how little. You may feel different about it but that is a discussion for another time.

This is a tribute post for Mr. Walter Hawkins who passed on July 11, 2010. This is a song composed by Walter Hopkins called Goin' Up Yonder:

I was raised in a musical tradition that allowed you to hear a variety of gospel music. Traditional, soul based or however you came to the path. I was lucky enough to be born when there was a melding of secular and sacred music that played on commercial radio stations.

Sometimes the DJ would slip one of the songs in during the day. Sunday mornings you could get the full dose of Rosetta Thorpe, Rev. Cleavland, Albertina Walker and so many talented choirs it would make my head ache to try to do justice remembering them all.

But you might not know of the tradition. You might think that the choir in the Blues Brothers movies is what a black choir is. Sure it was played for comedy but there are folks who think they know but they do not know.

They do not know the true intensity of intent of the music. It can be as powerful as a little old lady. This is the Georgia Mass Choir with Rev. Milton Biggham and Miss Alice Coney with a 1989 version of Come On In the Room.

I'm telling you this and I am a first class heathen. Or 2nd class. I keep forgetting. Before more of us forget or never knew I pass these musical treasures on to you. There needs to be other memory keepers for when I am gone.


  1. Beautiful. And thank you for being a memory-keeper.

  2. Some of us worship through music. Thanks for the memories.
    I was saved as a child and grew up going to church "every time the door opened." I don't go to church very often at all but I carry the music with me in my heart and often hear the music I grew up with in my head as I walk around. I'm working on a piece about my being baptized in the Mississippi River. Would love to share it with you if you'd be at all interested.

  3. Yep, send it on over. The mighty Mississippi as the starting path of salvation. There has got to be 100 different stories about that experience. I'd be most interested in yours.