Songs of Free Men
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Culled from six concerts given in the 1940s, with most of its tracks previously released on 78-rpm albums in that decade, this disc, as annotator Paul Robeson, Jr., notes, presents Paul Robeson at the peak of his singing career (from age 44 to 49) and re-creates a typical recital. Robeson sings spirituals, folk songs from various countries in various languages, classical pieces, and theater music, including works by Felix Mendelssohn, Marc Blitzstein (a brilliant "The Purest Kind of Guy" from No for an Answer), Earl Robinson, George Gershwin, and, of course, Jerome Kern and Oscar Hammerstein II ("I Still Suits Me" and "Ol' Man River" from Show Boat). Robeson is accompanied by his usual pianist, Lawrence Brown, on the first 17 tracks and by the Columbia Concert Orchestra on the remaining eight. The sound quality is remarkably clear, showing little evidence of the 50-year-old (and older) sources. As a result, Robeson's amazing bass-baritone is revealed in all its power, as is a sense of enunciation and presentation that perfectly suits a wide range of material. Released shortly before Robeson's centenary, this album is a fitting tribute to him.
He was the voice of the century
Born: April 9, 1898 in Princeton, NJ
Years Active: '20s, '30s, '40s, '50s, '60s, '70s
Top Albums and Songs by Paul Robeson Jr.
||Ol' Man River from Showboat||Songs of Free Men||3:08||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||Joe Hill||Freedom: Songs from the Heart of America||2:41||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||The Peat-Bog Soldiers (Moorsoldaten - Song from a German Concentration Camp)||Songs of Free Men||2:24||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||The House I Live In||Songs of Free Men||3:08||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||It Ain't Necessarily So||Songs of Free Men||2:35||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||Balm In Gilead||Songs of Free Men||2:28||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||Ol' Man River (From "Showboat")||Lift Every Voice! - Honoring the African American Musical Legacy||3:08||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||Joe Hill||Songs of Free Men||2:39||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||Sometimes I Feel Like a Motherless Child||Songs of Free Men||2:28||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||The Four Insurgent Generals||Songs of Free Men||2:10||$0.99||View In iTunes|