I started the 2020 Black History Project without thinking about the impact it might have on me, and maybe you. However, the effect from the research has been indescribable; at best, I would describe it as causing “my heart to bleed.”
The research was overwhelming and split between musicians who offered their brilliants to only have their brilliants cheapen through the emotional, professional and racial treatment.
Musicians who dared to show and offer their talents to society would only be discouraged and robbed of their soul’s investment into the music they loved. There are genres of music we would not have if it wasn’t for the determination and love of music birth through the Black Musicians.
Dorsey founded the first black gospel music publishing company, Dorsey House of Music. Dorsey’s combination of the rhythms from jazz and the blues was the beginning of Gospel Music that was not accepted by the Black Church.
Black musicians took ridicule that downplayed their musical abilities. They suffered through enduring jealousy from the white world of music. They could entertain but not enjoy. They could entertain but not stay. Maybe published but cheated.
Yet, I found a sense of pride, appreciation, love, and celebration in the fact that they never gave up. Music integrates with the soul and spirit of a musician, becoming a significant part of who they are. I’m glad they encouraged and pushed themselves to go beyond the limits and rise above society’s restrictions. Some Black Musicians from the distant past would not receive their rightful place in the world of music until death had come to lay hold of their life.
In closing, I’m thankful for the Black Musicians of long ago. Without whom we would be less than we are today. I love music, and always will. Music is one of the ways The GREAT I AM allows peace and harmony to enter the spirit of the human heart.