Robert Randolph and “Sacred Steel”

R&E caught up last month at the 9:30 Club in Washington, DC with Robert Randolph and the Family Band and their “House of God sound.” Also described as “sacred steel,” their music has its roots in an African-American gospel tradition that developed in a group of Pentecostal churches in the 1930s. Lap steel and pedal steel guitars were embraced in worship in place of an organ. Today Robert Randolph is one of the most talented sacred steel musicians around. Interview by Julie Mashack. Edited by Fred Yi and Missy Daniel.