Sunday, May 17, 2015

Thomas A. Dorsey, The REAL Composer Of "Peace In The Valley" (with eight YouTube examples of that song)

Edited by Azizi Powell

This post corrects mistatements found online that indicate that the composer of the religious song "Peace In The Valley" was Elvis Presly or Rosanne Cash. The REAL composer of that song was African American Blues/Gospel musician & composer Thomas A. Dorsey.

This post provides information about Thomas A. Dorsey, song lyrics for "Peace In The Valley", and eight YouTube examples of that song. The majority of these examples are by African American Gospel singers (Thomas A. Dorsey with R.H. Harris, Clara Ward, Little Richard, Mahalia Jackson, andSister Rosetta Tharpe. One example is by White American country singer Red Foley, one is by White American Rock & Roll, Gospel, Country singer Elvis Presley, and one is by the integrated vocal group, Gaither Vocal Band.

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

All copyrights remain with their owners.

Thanks to Thomas Dorsey and all other featured vocalists for their musical legacy. Thanks to all those who are quoted in this post and thanks to the publishers of these examples on YouTube.

"Thomas Andrew Dorsey (July 1, 1899 – January 23, 1993) was known as "the father of black gospel music" and was at one time so closely associated with the field that songs written in the new style were sometimes known as "dorseys."[2] Earlier in his life he was a leading blues pianist known as Georgia Tom. As formulated by Dorsey, gospel music combines Christian praise with the rhythms of jazz and the blues. His conception also deviates from what had been, to that time, standard hymnal practice by referring explicitly to the self, and the self's relation to faith and God, rather than the individual subsumed into the group via belief...

As Georgia Tom, he teamed up with Tampa Red (Hudson Whittaker) with whom he recorded the raunchy 1928 hit record "Tight Like That", a sensation, eventually selling seven million copies.[3] In all, he is credited with more than 400 blues and jazz songs. Dorsey began recording gospel music alongside blues in the mid-1920s. This led to his performing at the National Baptist Convention in 1930, and becoming the bandleader of two churches in the early 1930s.[4]

His first wife, Nettie... died in childbirth in 1932. Two days later the child, a son, also died. In his grief, he wrote his most famous song, one of the most famous of all gospel songs, "Precious Lord, Take My Hand".[5] Unhappy with the treatment received at the hands of established publishers, Dorsey opened the first black gospel music publishing company, Dorsey House of Music. He also founded his own gospel choir and was a founder and first president of the National Convention of Gospel Choirs and Choruses...

Dorsey wrote "Peace in the Valley" for Mahalia Jackson in 1937, which also became a gospel standard. He was the first African American elected to the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame and also the first in the Gospel Music Association's Living Hall of Fame."...

"Peace in the Valley" is a 1937 song written by Thomas A. Dorsey, originally for Mahalia Jackson.[1] The song became a hit in 1951 for Red Foley and the Sunshine Boys, reaching No. 7 on the Country & Western Best Seller chart.[2] It was among the first gospel recordings to sell one million copies. Foley's version was a 2006 entry into the Library of Congress' National Recording Registry.[3]

After the success of Red Foley's interpretation, Jo Stafford recorded the song for her 1954 gospel album Garden of Prayer. Because of the rendition by Elvis Presley (with backing by the Jordanaires on his first Christmas album) in 1957 the song forever became a country-pop favorite."...

(Thomas A. Dorsey)

Oh well, I'm tired and so weary
But I must go alone
Till the lord comes and calls, calls me away, oh yes
Well the morning's so bright
And the lamp is alight
And the night, night is as black as the sea, oh yes

There will be peace in the valley for me, some day
There will be peace in the valley for me, oh Lord I pray
There'll be no sadness, no sorrow
No trouble, trouble I see
There will be peace in the valley for me, for me

Well the bear will be gentle
And the wolves will be tame
And the lion shall lay down by the lamb, oh yes
And the beasts from the wild
Shall be lit by a child
And I'll be changed, changed from this creature that I am, oh yes

There will be peace in the valley for me, some day
There will be peace in the valley for me, oh Lord I pray
There'll be no sadness, no sorrow
No trouble, trouble I see
There will be peace in the valley for me, for me

Source: Google Lyrics: Peace In The Valley

These examples are presented in chronological order based on their publishing date, with the oldest dated example given first.

Example #1: Red Foley - Peace In The Valley

spellerine, Uploaded on Jul 4, 2009

Sacred song later recorded by Elvis Presley. On listening to this version, I believe this was the recording that Elvis based his own on. They are very similar sounding, right down to the phrasings and background singers!

Example #2: Peace In The Valley - Sister Rosetta Tharpe, "The Great Gospel Women"

Pannellctp Traditional Gospel Music, Uploaded on Nov 14, 2011

Original Release Date: June 30, 1993. Recorded between 1948 and 1991.

The Great Gospel Women, Shanachie 6004 (USA).
Selected comment:
MrTheOneAndOnly83, 2013
"The Anita Kerr singers are the backing vocals."

Example #3: Little Richard - Peace in the Valley.mpg

ThomShelford Published on Mar 17, 2012

Little Richard in great vocal mode - an updated video with more suitable photos!

Example #4: Peace In The Valley-Clara Ward

tinascaravans, Published on Sep 22, 2012

Gospel classics are songs that are special, they've been around for a long time. We all know them word for word, love them; they have a special meaning in our lives, and they will never be forgotten.
Commenters in this sound file’s discussion thread wrote that this song was recorded in the 1970s, “in Clara Ward’s heyday” [when her popularity was at its highest point].

Example #5: Originals and inspirations of Elvis' songs-Vol.9-(There'll Be)Peace In The Valley (For Me)

Pueni66, Published on Dec 21, 2012

Mahalia Jackson-(There'll Be)Peace In The Valley(For Me)-1937
Although this is the original version the 1951 version of Red Foley probably was the inspiration for Elvis

Example #6: (There'll Be) Peace In The Valley - Thomas A. Dorsey with R.H. Harris

Pannellctp Traditional Gospel Music, Published on Jan 7, 2013
According to a commenter on this sound file's discussion thread, this rendition of "Peace In The Valley" was recorded in 1973.

Example #7: Vintage Performance of Elvis Presley Singing Gospel Peace in the Valley

flash91214 Published on Jan 23, 2014

Example #8: Gaither Vocal Band - Peace In The Valley (Live)

GaitherVEVO Published on Mar 17, 2015
According to a commenter on this video's discussion thread, the soloist's name is Todd Suttles.

Thanks for visiting pancocojams.

Visitor comments are welcome.

No comments:

Post a Comment