Mudcat Café message #1044275 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #2103   Message #1044275
Posted By: Joe Offer
29-Oct-03 - 10:57 PM
Thread Name: Lyr Req/Add: Going Home / Goin' Home (Dvorak)
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Going Home / Goin' Home
It's interesting to trace Robeson's use of "Negro dialect" through his career - you can do it easily by following his numerous recodings of "Ol' Man River." When he first sang it, his dialect was thick - just like the white guys wanted him to sing it. By the 1950's, his lyrics were more powerful, and his dialect almost nonexistant.
In this day and age, I think it's more appropriate to sing "Goin' Home" in plain English. Songs of Zion is a wonderful hymnal, but it was prepared in the 1970's and published in 1981/82. I think you'll find that the African-American hymnals published after 1990 leave out most of the dialect, and nothing is really lost by leaving it. Actually, the entire idea of "Goin Home" is on the borderline nowadays, and I'll bet you won't hear those lyrics used in worship very much - although it's still an appropriate concert piece. The words don't speak to the current human condition. The song sounds pretty, but the only part of the lyrics that speaks to people is the repeated phrase, "Goin' Home."
-Joe Offer-