Sunday, June 4, 2017

Mahalia Jackson - "Trouble In My Way" (But That Don't Bother Me") sound file & lyrics

Edited by Azizi Powell

This pancocojams post provides information about Mahalia Jackson and showcases a YouTube sound file of Mahalia Jackson's recording of "Trouble In My Way" (But That Don't Bother Me"). The lyrics for that song are also included in this post.

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

All copyrights remain with their owners.

Thanks to Mahalia Jackson for her musical legacy. Thanks to all those who are quoted in this post and thanks to the publisher of this examples on YouTube.

"Mahalia Jackson …; October 26, 1911 – January 27, 1972) was an American gospel singer. Possessing a powerful contralto voice,[2] she was referred to as "The Queen of Gospel".[1][3][4] She became one of the most influential gospel singers in the world and was heralded internationally as a singer and civil rights activist.[5] She was described by entertainer Harry Belafonte as "the single most powerful black woman in the United States".[5] She recorded about 30 albums (mostly for Columbia Records) during her career, and her 45 rpm records included a dozen "golds"—million-sellers.
"I sing God's music because it makes me feel free", Jackson once said about her choice of gospel, adding, "It gives me hope. With the blues, when you finish, you still have the blues."[6]


A writer for Down Beat music magazine stated on November 17, 1954: "It is generally agreed that the greatest spiritual singer now alive is Mahalia Jackson."[25] ...

With her mainstream success, Jackson was criticized by some gospel purists who complained about her hand-clapping and foot-stomping and about her bringing "jazz into the church”...

(as sung by Mahalia Jackson)

I used to always wonder why
All good fortune always pass me by.
But now I’m blessed
That don’t bother me.
Just to know He saved my soul
He put my name down on
Heavenly roll.
Trouble Lord, it's trouble Lord, keep getting in my way.
Oh! But that don’t bother me.

Trouble, Lord trouble, Lord, keep getting in my way.
That don’t bother me
Trouble Lord, trouble Lord, keep getting in my way
That don’t bother me.

I don’t understand
How He hold this whole world right in the palm
of His hand
It's trouble Lord, it’s trouble, Lord keep getting in my way.
Oh, but that don’t bother me.

And now, when things get in my way
I fall down on my knees and I pray.
And I don’t let the devil bother me.
And all the while I’m growing in His grace
And I know to heaven I’ll stay.
It's trouble, it's trouble keep getting in my way,
Lord, but that don’t bother me.

Ooh! Trouble Lord, trouble, Lord
Keep getting in my way.
That don’t bother me.
Oh! Trouble, Lord, trouble, Lord
keep getting in my way
That don’t bother me.
I know that, wooh, I understand
And He holds this whole world right in the palm
of His hand.
Trouble Lord, trouble, Lord keeps getting in my way
But that don’t bother me.

*This is my transcription of this song from the recording on YouTube. Additions and corrections are welcome.

The line "It's trouble, Lord" may be "This trouble, Lord."

The interjections "wooh", "ooh!" and "oh" are sometimes included in this transcription, but I don't believe that these interjections necessarily need to be sung in those lines.

I'd love to learn more about this song (i.e. who composed the lyrics and the music, and when.) If you know this information, please share it in the comment section.

Note: This is not the same African American Gospel song as "Trouble In My Way (I Have To Cry Sometimes.)
A pancocojams post about that song will be published ASAP and the link to that post will be added here.

SHOWCASE EXAMPLE: Mahalia Jackson - Trouble In My Way

AdolescentFunk, Uploaded on Feb 18, 2010

From the Sunday Morning Prayer Meeting With Mahalia CD © Sony , which contains unreleased recordings from 1956 - 1965.
Here are a few selected comments from this video's discussion thread, with some explanatory editorial comments

1. Kendall King, 2012
"There is no one better. Truly classic!"

2. receive JESUSCHRIST, 2012
"this song makes me want to shout, dance, twirl all around. It has a little jazz to it. Yeah!!!"
"Shout" here may mean "speak with a loud voice". However, "shout" (i.e. "ring shout") was a "transcendent religious ritual, first practiced by African slaves in the West Indies and the United States, in which worshipers move in a circle while shuffling and stomping their feet and clapping their hands. Despite the name, shouting aloud is not an essential part of the ritual."
later, the religious meaning of "shout" was "to feel the Holy Spirit" (and as a result, to "get happy", "do the Holy dance", "speak in tongues", etc.)
Click for more information about the term "shout" and "ring shout".

Delores Randallm 2013
"Old school gurl living in a #21st century world. Let's go to #church virtual family."
"Old school" here is a positive reference for something or someone from the past.

"gurl" is a purposely misspelling of the word "girl" to conform to that word's downhome (Black Southern United States) pronounciation.

In this comment "Let's go to church" doesn't refer to an actual church building, but means replicating the experience of worshiping God and feeling the Holy Spirit where ever you are.

knowledgeincubator, 2013
"Mahalia Jackson is, and always will be, The Queen of Gospel."

RaineSky1984, 2013
"The best. None compares to her. When she sang she SANG."
The second use of the word "sang" in this sentence is an African American Vernacular English expanded [usually present tense] meaning of "sang" which means "to sing very well, particularly to sing soulfully very well".

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  1. I like this song so much, and right now I'm gonna set myself down and write out the chords, so that we can sing and prove it in our homechurch.

    1. Knut the Fisherman, great!

      I'm glad to help raise awareness about this song.

      One love!