Melding memorable music and inspiring history, Freedom Song presents a fresh perspective on the civil rights movement by showing how songs of hope, faith, and freedom strengthened the movement and served as its voice. In this eye-opening account, you'll discover how churches and other groups--from the SNCC Freedom Singers to the Chicago Children's Choir--transformed music both religious and secular into electrifying anthems that furthered the struggle for civil rights. From rallies to marches to mass meetings, music was ever-present in the movement. People sang songs to give themselves courage and determination, to spread their message to others, to console each other as they sat in jail. The music they shared took many different forms, including traditional spirituals once sung by slaves, jazz and blues music, and gospel, folk, and pop songs. Freedom Song explores in detail the galvanizing roles of numerous songs, including "Lift Every Voice and Sing," "The Battle of Jericho," "Wade in the Water," and "We Shall Overcome." As Rosa Parks, Martin Luther King Jr., and many others took a stand against prejudice and segregation, a Chicago minister named Chris Moore started a children's choir that embraced the spirit of the civil rights movement and brought young people of different races together, young people who lent their voices to support African Americans struggling for racial equality.
More than 50 years later, the Chicago Children's Choir continues its commitment to freedom and justice. An accompanying CD, Songs on the Road to Freedom , features the CCC performing the songs discussed throughout the book.
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(215mm x 279mm x 8mm)
Chicago Review Press
Publisher: Chicago Review Press
Country of Publication:
US Kirkus Review »
From the introduction, it seems that this will be the story of the Chicago Children's Choir, a world-renowned choir inspired by the civil-rights movement and committed to excellence, racial equality and social justice. However, the story of the choir is swamped by the in-depth coverage of the civil-rights movement. Though eloquently written, with song lyrics and well-chosen photographs breaking up the text, the volume misses an opportunity to tell the story from a fresh perspective. Still, Turck does a fine job of reminding readers about several important issues: "Segregation in the South was enforced by law. Segregation in the North was enforced by simple racism"; the civil-rights movement is not over, but continues today through the struggles by gay people, immigrants, students and many people around the world; African-Americans have struggled for civil rights since the days of slavery. An accompanying CD will inspire readers to learn more about how music went hand-in-hand with the struggle, and a wealth of websites, music and videos is listed in the bibliography. (song appendix, notes on the CD) (Nonfiction. 9 & up) (Kirkus Reviews)
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Author Biography - Mary C. Turck
Mary C Turck is an educator and the author of many books for children, including The Civil Rights Movement for Kids. She lives in St. Paul, Minnesota.