Saturday, February 6, 2016

The Davis Sisters - "Oh, I Want To See Him" (with lyrics, & comments)

Edited by Azizi Powell

This post showcases a video and a sound file of the Pentecostal song "Oh, I Want To See Him" by The Davis Sisters. The lyrics to this song are included in this post.

This post also includes information about the Davis Sisters and selected comments from the showcased sound file's discussion thread. I've also included a small number of explanatory comments. Additions and corrections are welcome for my explanatory comments.

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

All copyrights remain with their owners.

Thanks to The Davis Sisters for their musical legacy. Thanks to all who are quoted in this post, and thanks to the publisher of this video on YouTube.

"The Davis Sisters of Philadelphia, PA were an American gospel group founded by Ruth ("Baby Sis") Davis and featuring her sisters Thelma, Audrey, Alfreda and Edna. Imogene Greene joined the group in 1950, and was later replaced by Jackie Verdell when Greene left to join the Caravans.

Early years

Raised in the Fire-Baptized Holiness Church in Philadelphia, the Davis Sisters were one of the first female groups to sing "hard gospel" of the sort being pioneered by the Dixie Hummingbirds and other male quartets of the day. They achieved a big sound, managing to sound like a choir behind the lead singer by positioning themselves several steps behind the microphone.


The Famous Davis Sisters of Philadelphia was founded by Ruth Davis in 1945 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania...

The core of the group were biological sisters but over the decades some were replaced by non-related performers.

Ruth Davis - nicknamed Baby Sis, founded the group at age 17. She was the featured vocalist with a bluesy voice and could also play the piano but never did on stage. She was the creative brains behind the group's musical arrangements and was not afraid to try something new. Some of her gospel songs contain doo-wop vocal techniques culled from current rock and roll songs."...

SHOWCASE VIDEO: The Davis Sisters-Oh, I want to see him

MegaBlackisBeautiful, Uploaded on Sep 12, 2011

The Davis Sisters Throw Back
Ft.Ruth Davis
A "throw back" is a recently used complimentary term that means something (a song or dance etc) that is an "oldie but goodie" (old school).

SHOWCASE SOUND FILE - "Oh, I Want To See Him"- The Davis Sisters

Embedding disabled by request

Rowoches, Uploaded on Jul 22, 2008

Sing chirrun!

As I journey through the land, singing as I go,
Trying to Point souls to Calvary—to the crimson flow,
So many arrows have pierced my soul from without, within
But this Lord I serves keeps on leading me on,
Through Him I know I'll win (repeat)

Oh, I want to see Him and look upon His face,
Oh, there to sing forever of His saving grace;
On the streets of glory, let me lift my voice,
Cares all past, home at last, forever to rejoice.
These lyrics were published by Rowoches in the discussion thread for this sound file.

The selected comments from the sound file's discussion thread are given in relative chronological order except for replies. However, these comments may not be in consecutive order. I've assigned numbers to each group of comments for referencing purposes only.

In addition to showcasing this song and its singers, I'm interested in documenting the use of African American Vernacular English in this discussion thread.

1. vocalvesselo
"Lord Dwayne, I didn't think nobody would remember this but me! I still sing this! LOL Tears churches UP!

Love ya man!"
"Dwayne" is Rowoches's name.

2. Samuel Dennison
"you're not the only singin it brotha/sistah God is good."
The word "one" was probably meant to be typed after the word "one" in this comment.

3. direfranchement
"I remember singing this in church as a child...I didn't realize the song was quite this old. I really like this version...I don't remember singing the verses in church, I only remember the chorus "Oh I want to see him and look upon his face...".

4. goodstiff
"+Rickdaruler07 The Davis Sisters were the badest female gospel singing group back in the day. I first saw them when I lived in Chicago and was a member of the famous Fellowship Missionary Baptist Church. These women were powerful. They were known to come to your church and mess up the place. I loved them and I wish there was a group today comparable to them. I saw Albertina Walker, a couple of years ago at the GMWA Workshop and she told me that all of the Davis Sisters were gone on to be with the Lord."
GMWA = Gospel Music Workshop Of America,Inc.
I can't find any comments for the blogger who posted under the screen name "Rickdaruler07". It's possible that that blogger switched his screen name to a first and last name as encouraged by YouTube somewhere around 2012 or 2013. If so, all of his post would then be published under that name, but that old screen name would still shown up in the replies.

5. DaSourcespr06
"As I journey up and down this land"..if Ruth don't sing that!
"If Ruth don't sing that" compliments the way that Ruth sang that line.

6. Darneloh
"Alright now! Great song and nice pic!"

7. Jeff H
"Amen! A classic gospel performance by truely gifted artists!"

8. Gary Wood
"Oh my my, this will make an old white boy stand up and holler LOL. Praise Him!"

9. Dereck Dean [2010]
"This song makes Black folk holla too!"

10. Barbara Hill
"I met the Davis sisters in Augusta, Thelma was married to one of the Blassingame men from Augusta The Davis sisters were frequent guest of the Swanee quintet, as well as so many others. I wonder if Thelma's sister-in-laws Frances and Icelea are still living in Phila, we all grew up together.Its been some yeare since they have been here. There was also another brother named Albert. I would love to reach them,. PLEASE ANYONE."
"Phila" (Philly) = Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
11. blavis50
"+Barbara Hill @jadageneve yes, Im Thelma & James Blassingame grandson. , My aunt Frances still living, my aunt Icelea died like 2001 or 2002. and yeah my uncle albert, he's our pastor over at FaithTabernacle in philly"

12. jollysincere
"+blavis50 @blavis50 Bless your heart, your Ruth was such a dear friend of mine. we would visit each other during the 50s & 60s. During that time, Your aunts were fierce Church Wreckers. To see those gals in concert during the 1950s, was truly a treat you would not forget. In the theatre of mind, i can see them now taking to the stage in those white robes. Curtis on the piano, and Ruth wailing away! Lord jesus, what a time."
In the context of this comment "church wreckers" is a compliment. It means preachers and/or singers who really bring down the Holy Spirit into the church or gathering.

13. Chuck Flowers
"Yessuh!! Come on Davis that Ruth Davis was DANGEROUS! See I appreciate this kind of singin!"
The word "dangerous" here has the same meaning as "church wreckers".

14. Eugene Ross
"I have never heard the Sisters sing this song, yawll betta sing!"

15. Jeff H
"Sing it girrrrrlllllll!: a classic"

16. shaheed rasheed
"Ruth is taking us to church as usual."
"Taking us to church" means really bringing down the Holy Spirit as is supposed to happen when you go to church.

"Thank you for posting this staple of true gospel."

18. Derrick Phelps
"Love This! At 2:10 when she says"Won't have cry no more" she's rocking it!"
"Rocking it" - really singing it in an uptempo, lively way

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