Civil Rights in Columbia

June 18, 2013

In gospel songs, clues to the speeches of Martin Luther King Jr.

When Jonathan Rieder was growing up in Philadelphia during the 1950s, infatuated with rockabilly and rhythm and blues, he sometimes rose early enough to inadvertently tune in to the Sunday morning gospel show on WHAT. Those worship songs sounded different from his favorites, which aimed more at the hips than the spirit. For the Rieder family, fervently unobservant even in its own Jewish faith, Christianity stood at an alien distance.

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