Watch Sister Rosetta Tharpe perform ‘This Little Light of Mine’ in 1960

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That guit solo at 2:10!! What an incredible performer!

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Soul soothing & uplifting.


Sister Rosetta Tharpe was amazing. She and Willie Mae Thornton were the mothers of rock & roll. Shame that I never knew of her until recently. I sang this song in 1960 too, in Sunday School. “This little Gospel light of mine”. It was much less rousing because the rest of us Lutherans had never heard of her either, and because, well, just Lutherans. (German Lutherans at that. Oh, the horrible singing!) Sure, it’s a missionary song, but we were taught that the important message was to testify for love & justice in the way we went about our daily lives. Church people went to the South to join the struggle. Does this happen any more? Sign of the times.


I never knew “Light of Mine” as a children’s song, as in my Sunday school we jammed to “Jesus Loves Me” (like a dirge sung by children). I think maybe I came to know from this milestone doc how that song and others were threads through the Civil Rights movement:

And NPR on Sister Rosetta, holy cats, what a talent (and what a performer; that shimmy!):

“This Little Light of Mine” put a Big Smile on this face of Mine!!

In addition to the fine performance…

Damn, Gretsch made some beautiful guitars.

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Sister Rosetta Tharpe was a gifted artist and performed with passion. Check out videos of her - she was enthusiastically welcomed wherever she performed.

Interfaith groups are very active in working against family separation. The protests outside the detention center in Richmond, CA were so successful that the contract has been cancelled. (Unfortunately that means that the jailed refugees will be shipped elsewhere, far from family support.)

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