I had a BATTLE all planned out for today and decided to scrap it at the very last minute in favor of this tune that more fits my mood the past few days.
"Sometimes I Feel Like a Motherless Child" (or simply "Motherless Child") is a traditional Negro spiritual.
The song dates back to the era of slavery in the United States when it was common practice to sell children of slaves away from their parents. An early performance of the song dates back to the 1870s by the Fisk Jubilee Singers. Like many traditional songs, it has many variations and has been recorded widely (see partial lists of choral arrangements and covers below).
The song is clearly an expression of pain and despair as it conveys the hopelessness of a child who has been torn from their parents. Under one interpretation, the repetitive singing of the word "sometimes" offers a measure of hope, as it suggests that at least "sometimes" I do not feel like a motherless child.
Although the plaintive words can be interpreted literally, they might alternatively be metaphoric. The “motherless child” could be a slave separated from and yearning for his or her African homeland, his or her spouse, parents, siblings or child(ren) (from all or any of which he or she may have been separated in the trafficking process) or a slave suffering “a long ways from home”—home being heaven—or most likely all.
There are numerous covers of this song. If you have the time and want to hear two beautiful versions sung as a prayer; go to YouTube and listen to the medley by Mahalia Jackson of ‘Summertime’ and ‘Motherless Child’. The other is by Odetta. I decided not to use either of these versions, because I couldn’t bear to read any potential negative comments. THAT, my friends is a statement about me, not you.
My two choices for this BATTLE are:
First – Van the Man Morrison
And Next – Dr. John
Please leave me your vote and the reason you chose so, in the comment section. When you finish here, please go to STMcC Presents Battle of the Bands where Stephen will have posted his own BATTLE and he will also provide links to all the other participants. Please take the time to try and visit everyone.
I’ll post the results along with my vote on the 7th of April.
I know you all are terribly busy today, what with the beginning of the A to Z Challenge and the ISWG. I do appreciate you stopping by my place, so I’ll make this short and sweet. It's a bit of a reality check about our characters and something that often makes me feel pretty damn insecure.
Think about it!
Until we meet again…Happy Trails to you!