As a singer/songwriter, guitarist, storyteller and activist, I love the African American Spirituals and I am passionate about their preservation. Determined to guarantee their preservation, in 2007 I was successful in securing the support of the United States Congress to submit Twin Resolutions in both the House and Senate to recognize the African American Spirituals a National Treasure, and honor the enslaved Africans for their contributions to our nation with our deepest gratitude and respect. These historic Twin Resolutions passed by unanimous vote in February 2007.
Today, as honorary US Spokesman for the African American Spirituals as a National Treasure, I continue my efforts to preserve the history of African American spirituals as a national treasure with performances of my one-man show and creating community events where music brings people together. In the context of American history, the African American spirituals have long been safekeeping a message of hope.These humble spirituals have done more to reflect the spirit of the people of these United States, and have been a vibrant recollection of our strengths and frailties in our struggles to form a more perfect union. We have used them throughout our history, even transforming them into freedom songs during the Civil Rights Movement in the 1950’s and 1960’s. It is with love and a great deal of pride in our ancestors that I continue the legacy of the African American spirituals in modern day. These songs are meant to be communal in spirit and I hope you will join me in preserving them by singing them together with me!
Peace and love all around,