From Plank Road Publishing
James Weldon Johnson and J. Rosamond Johnson, arr. Paul Jennings
This powerful song was written by James Weldon Johnson and his brother J. Rosamond Johnson for the celebration of Abraham Lincoln's birthday in 1900 and has become known as The Black National Anthem. It was originally performed by children at its premiere in Jacksonville, Florida. James was a respected poet who eventually went on to become one of the founders of the NAACP, and Rosamond had later success as a composer of music for Broadway. This arrangement is set rather traditionally, and the orchestration is meant to sound as if it were a turn-of-the-century theater orchestra, complete with a richly recorded string section. To the best of our knowledge, it is the only setting of this tune available with Performance/Accompaniment recording. (from Music K-8, Vol. 11, No. 3)
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