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Monday, March 18, 2013

Jesus Savior Pilot Me (Black Gospel Versions With Lyrics)

Edited by Azizi Powell

This post features sound files of three African American Gospel renditions of the 19th century hymn "Jesus Savior, Pilot Me." These sound files showcase three different Black Gospel styles of singing this hymn.

This post also includes information about the original lyricist and the original composer of the tune for "Jesus Savior, Pilot Me".

The content of this post is presented for historical, religious, and aesthetic purposes.

All copyrights remain with their owners.

INFORMATION ABOUT "JESUS SAVIOR PILOT ME"
From http://www.plymouthbrethren.org/article/10138 The Story Behind …“Jesus, Saviour, Pilot Me”
"Edward Hopper was born in New York City on February 17, 1818. His father was a merchant and his mother a descendant of the Huguenots, the persecuted French Protestants. In 1870, he began the most fruitful phase of his ministry when he became pastor of a church in New York harbour known as the “Church of Sea and Land.” Here he ministered most effectively for the remaining years of his life to the many sailors who made their way to and from their ships.

It was while ministering at his sailor’s mission that Edward Hopper wrote this hymn text especially for the spiritual needs of these sea-faring men. He wrote it anonymously, as he did all of his works, and for some time no one ever knew that the pastor of the sailors was also the author of the sailor’s favorite hymn. Jesus, Saviour, Pilot Me has been included in nearly every evangelical hymnal published until the present time. Through the years it has been a hymn that is especially meaningful to young people sincerely concerned about knowing God’s will for their lives."
-snip-
From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Edgar_Gould
"John Edgar Gould (1821-1875) was a composer and publisher of hymns. He was born in Bangor, Maine and died in Algiers, Algeria while traveling....

He was best known for composing the tune to the popular "Jesus, Savior, Pilot Me", whose text was written by Edward Hopper."
-snip-
Here's a link to the original lyrics to "Jesus Savior, Pilot Me" which was composed by Edward Hopper (1818-1888)
http://www.lutheran-hymnal.com/lyrics/tlh649.htm

Except for the beginning lines, the lyrics of these African American versions significantly differ from this song's original lyrics.

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FEATURED EXAMPLES
Example #1: Jesus Savior Pilot Me



akelly9600, Uploaded on Sep 19, 2010

James Cleveland and the Southern California Community Choir sing

Jesus Savior Pilot Me. Since their successful debut with James Cleveland, The Southern California Community Choir has distinguished themselves with accolades from critics and gospel music devotees from across America.
-snip-
LYRICS: JESUS SAVIOR, PILOT ME
(as sung by James Cleveland & The Southern California Community Choir)

Choir -Jesus, Savior, pilot me
Over life's tempestuous sea.
Unknown waves before me roll,
Hiding rock and treacherous shoal.
Chart and compass come from Thee:
Jesus, Savior, why don’t you pilot me.

[Lead sings first verse while choir continues singing “Jesus, Savior, why don’t you pilot me”]:

[Choir begins and Lead overlaps with some elaboration on the same words]

Lord, I need You for my guide
Always close, close by my side.
Pilot me
Pilot me
Pilot me
Pilot me
Oh,
why don’t You
Why don’t You
Why don’t You
Pilot me.

[repeat 2x]

Jesus, Savior, why don’t you pilot me”.
Why don’t You pilot me
Why don’t You pilot me
Why don’t You pilot me
Why don’t You pilot me
-snip-
Transcription by Azizi Powell. Additions & corrections are welcome.

I posted this example first because it's the rendition that I was searching for when I thought of this song. My guess is that this sound file was recorded in 1968.

Click http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VDeHekW6spo for an approximately 1968 sound file of a very similar rendition that was sung by an African American youth choir.

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Example #2: "Jesus Saviour, Pilot Me" (1968)-The Roberta Martin Singers



JayEm86, Uploaded on Mar 30, 2009

Delois Barrett Campbell, lead. From the RMS's very last album. You've probably noticed that by this time, the group's sound had noticeably (almost drastically) changed, as they began to adopt elements from the then contemporary sounding gospel arrangements that were popular among gospel groups during the late 60s and early 70s.
0snip-
LYRICS: JESUS SAVIOR, PILOT ME
(as sung by The Roberta Martin Singers)

Choir & Lead - Jesus, my Savior, pilot me
Over life's tempestuous sea.

Lead- Unknown waves before me roll,
(Before me roll)
Lead - Hiding rock and treacherous shoal.
(and treacherous shoul)
Lead & Choir -Chart and compass come they all from Thee.
Jesus, Savior, pilot me.

Lead- Just like a mother stills her child
I want You to calm the ocean wild.
I will always obey Thy will.
Choir-Obey They will.
Lead-Oh, will Thou sayest, oh “To them be still”.
Choir- To them be still.
Lead- Oh, may I hear Thee whisper softly to me
”Well I’ll, Well I’ll, I’ll pilot thee.”

Mmm, Oh Lord, You are the pilot.
Choir-You are the pilot over treacherous seas
Lead [overlapping with Choir] – over treacherous seas.
Lead - Lord, You are the Pilot.
Choir-and the waves were still and You’re truly working.
Lead [overlapping with Choir] – and You’re truly working.
Lead-Lord You are the Pilot.
Choir-and the waves were still and You’re truly working.
[Lead overlapping with Choir] – and You’re truly working.

Lead-Oh, why don’t You pilot me.

Choir-Jesus
Lead [overlapping with Choir]-Oh, my Savior
Choir-Oh, guide me home.
Jesus
Pilot me home
Lead [overlapping with Choir]-Jesus, You’re really my Savior.
Oh! dear Lord!
Choir-Jesus, pilot me home
Lead-Jesus, my Savior,
Lead & Choir – My Savior pilot me.
-snip-
Transcription by Azizi Powell. Italics mean that I'm unsure about this transcription. Additions & corrections are welcome.

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Example #3: community chorus of surry, va - 'jesus savior pilot me' funky gospel soul 45 on viv!



Aaron Bushman, Published on Jul 1, 2012
community chorus of surry, va - 'jesus savior pilot me' funky gospel soul 45 on viv!
-snip-
Note that this sound file was released as a 45 (single) record. It was relatively unusual for Gospel songs to be released as 45s. That said, the success of "Oh Happy Day", the 1967 Edwin Hawkins Gospel rendition of an 18th century Christian hymn probably influenced other producers to release Gospel songs as single records.

Click http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2013/03/the-edwin-hawkins-singers-oh-happy-day.html for a sound file & two videos of the Edwin Hawkins Singers renditions of "Oh Happy Day".
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LYRICS: JESUS SAVIOR, PILOT ME
(as sung by The Community Chorus of Surry, Virgina)

Males-Jesus Sav-
Females-Jesus Sav-
Males-Jesus Sav-
Females-Jesus Sav-
Entire Choir- Jesus,Savior, pilot me.
Over life's tempestuous sea.

[repeat]

Males-Unknown waves
Females-Unknown waves
Males-Unknown waves
Females-Unknown waves
Entire Choir- Unknown waves before me roll
Hiding rock and treacherous shoal.

Lead-My Jesus Savior, pilot me
Choir-Pilot me
Lead-over life’s tempestuous seas
Choir-tempestuous seas
Lead-Unknown waves before me roll
Choir-Before me roll
Lead –Oh, hiding rock and treacherous shoal.
I said surely, God
Choir [overlapping Lead] –surely. God
Lead -they came from Thee
Choir [overlapping Lead] – they came from Thee
Lead-I said, Jesus, Lord, pilot me
Choir- Lord, pilot me.

[repeat and add at end]

Lead-Unknown ways,
Choir-Unknown waves
Lead-Before me roll
Choir-Before me roll
Lead-Hiding rocks
Choir-Hiding rocks
Lead-and treacherous shoal
Choir-and treacherous shoal
Lead-I said Jes-
Choir & Lead –Jesus Savior pilot me.
-snip-
Transcription by Azizi Powell. Italics mean that I'm unsure about this transcription. Additions & corrections are welcome.

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ACKNOWLEDGEMENT AND THANKS
Thanks to the composers of these songs, and thanks to the vocalists and musicians whose renditions of it are featured in these sound files. My thanks also to the uploaders of these sound files.

Thank you for visiting pancocojams.

Viewer comments are welcome.

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