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Then Sings My SoulThe Culture of Southern Gospel Music$
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Douglas Harrison

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780252036972

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252036972.001.0001

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The Gaitherization of Contemporary Southern Gospel

The Gaitherization of Contemporary Southern Gospel

(p.110) 4. The Gaitherization of Contemporary Southern Gospel
Then Sings My Soul

Douglas Harrison

University of Illinois Press

This chapter provides the first comprehensive academic treatment of Bill Gaither and the Bill and Gloria Gaither Homecoming Friends concert tour and video series. It explores the private origins of Bill Gaither's public oeuvre. The focus here is on the way Gaither's life and music crystallize a set of widespread anxieties and ambitions among the generations of Cold War, postmodern evangelicals who follow his music. The chapter identifies the strategic manner in which Gaither Homecomings repurpose the habits of early-twentieth-century singing-convention style in southern gospel. It then concludes by demonstrating how these updated patterns of expression refract the music's long-standing function as a pressure regulator between tradition and modernity in postmodern America.

Keywords:   Bill Gaither, Gaither Homecomings, Gloria Gaither, music, postmodern America, postmodern evangelicals, tradition, modernity, early-twentieth century, singing

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