February 4th, 2013
Sister Rosetta Tharpe
Playlist: The One and Only Queen of Hot Gospel

tharpe_musicv22BY TOM McNAMARA

It’s American Masters radio: the other AM on the Spotify dial.

Elvis listened to her. So did Jerry Lee Lewis, Little Richard and Johnny Cash. And yet, somehow, Sister Rosetta Tharpe — “the original soul sister,” as people used to call her — is more or less a complete unknown today. It’s hard to believe when you hear her sing or play heavy on the electric guitar.

Have yourself a listen to Sister Rosetta on The One and Only Queen of Hot Gospel playlist, curated by the American Masters team.

A note to the user, you’ll have to sign up for a Spotify account to listen. But, you’re in luck: it’s a free service.

Premieres Friday, February 22 at 9pm on PBS (check local listings)

  • Zorro

    What an absolutely terrific program about a highly influential and yet underheralded pioneer of American music. Racism and sexism joined forces to keep Sister Rosetta marginalized. Thanks to American Masters for bringing Sister Rosetta’s legacy back into the mainstream.

    It is this kind of programming that makes PBS and AM such a joy to watch and support. God bless you. Keep up the great work.


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