Aretha Franklin

Songs Of Faith: Aretha Gospel

  • B002947101
  • Release Date: March 22nd 2019
  • $18.99

Songs Of Faith was recorded live in 1956 at New Bethel Baptist Church in Detroit, when she was just 14 years old. It stands as the earliest showcase of her vocal preeminence and her astonishingly powerful renditions of gospel standards.

This newly restored and remastered edition of the album marks its return to vinyl for the first time in decades. Striking new cover art is accompanied by a new essay by Aretha Franklin biographer David Ritz, as well as a detailed history of the various releases of each track.

In 1956, Franklin performed, accompanying herself at the piano, as the opening act for her celebrated father and spiritual figurehead, the Reverend C.L. Franklin, whose recorded sermons were million-sellers. These performances by the future Queen of Soul, years before her emergence on Columbia and later Atlantic, were first released as singles in the 1950s, and then on LP releases by Chess/Checker.

Writer Mikal Gilmore revisited these star-making performances at New Bethel Baptist Church in his Aretha Franklin cover feature for Rolling Stone in October 2018. “Before an open microphone,” he wrote, “her vocals took on an incorporeal quality — world-weary and mystical at the same time. As Aretha wailed ‘Precious Lord,’ a listener in the audience called out, ‘Listen at her!’ A great career in the gospel world was there for the wonder child’s taking.”

LP - Standard Black Vinyl