Tiki Mercury-Clarke’s “Lift Every Voice and Sing!: The Roots of Gospel Music”, Does what no other gospel album has ever done: connect African tradition with the development of Gospel music. This album should be listened to by all who think they know the African roots of Gospel music. “It is an incredible poetic and learning experience that will give the listener an extraordinary historical excursion from Africa to contemporary Gospel music.
“I was moved to tears as each track taught me how sacred and ancient the music of African people is, and unfortunately, how many of us fail to understand this sacred history.
“This recording needs to be in the library of every artist, publisher, and listener of Gospel music. Tiki’s voice, in both the readings and songs speaks directly to the soul and captures the traditional “shout songs” of Africans during enslavement.
“This album is simply awesome.”
~Dr. Ray Winbush (Professor, Scholar, Author) Director, Institute for Urban Research Morgan State University Baltimore, Maryland, U.S.A.
“Tiki Mercury-Clarke’s “Lift Every Voice and Sing!: The Roots of Gospel Music”, represents a landmark achievement in the use of oral storytelling as powerful learning experience. The weaving of historical fact and moral inspection is nothing less than masterful.
“Tiki Mercury-Clarke engages us instantly and guides us on a journey that is uncompromising yet thoughtful in the exploration of the African holocaust as a test of the courage, beauty, and spiritual power of African people.
“This compilation is a must for any educator who is serious of taking on the challenge of delving into the fearful and stormy waters of social justice.”
Kai ner Maa Pitanta Masters of Science in Education, Foundations and Teaching Toronto, Ontario, Canada
“Tiki Mercury-Clarke’s “Lift Every Voice & Sing!: The Roots of Gospel Music”, brings a new vision of African history, through the dynamics of gospel music.
“This three volume CD collection of narration and music moves the listener thru African and world history, in such a way that the listener is transposed and transformed. Anyone listening to this magnificent artist presentation of the great sagas of these great men and women will be left enlightened and uplifted by the brilliance of this artistic rendering.
“The need for such a wonderful learning tool is long overdue. Every home and classroom should have a copy of Tiki Mercury-Clarke’s “Lift Every Voice and Sing!: The Roots of
~Professor James Small Vice-President Organization of African American Unity New York, New York, U.S.A.
“Tiki, I listened to your ‘Lift Every Voice & Sing’ CD set and you did an excellent job with presenting a wide array of historical and cultural data to contextualize the roots of gospel music.
“Your work is very well thought and professional. The songs, narration, and multi-language voiceovers constitute an effective CD presentation. You successfully place the listening audience in the time and place being described.
“I believe that you have set a high standard in African-centered CD production.”
~Professor Manu Ampim Director, Advancing The Research Oakland , California, U.S.A.
“I waited eagerly for the release of this CD set and am thrilled to have my very own.
“The thought provoking narrative and outstanding musical performances are informative and entertaining. It is an unforgettable historical recount of the experiences and contributions of black people, from the establishment in Africa of the first democrative societies to the creation of distinct rhythms used in worship.
“Encore! I look forward with the same anticipation to a follow-up of this magnificent work.”
~Luciana Brown Vaughn, ON
“I met Tiki Mercury-Clarke as she walked into the studio last November 9th (2002), not really having any idea what the record we were about to record would be. Wow. I had no idea I would be learning such a large part of my heritage!
“Now, I could tell you all sorts of interesting technical notes, about how Tiki and Quammie’s mastery of African musical history translated into tracks on a computer, but what was of real interest to me, personally, was the historical content.
“I was born in England, but my parents were both born and raised in East Africa. Our heritage is not African but Goan, and subsequently during my life, I never really asked them in any detail about their lives, or the political climate, or the history of Africa. I am overwhelmed with the lessons Tiki has taught me about a heritage that should have been part of my general knowledge.
“This story she tells, should be part of EVERY man and woman’s general history of the world. It is a story often neglected and it is a story that applies to how every American, Canadian and European lives their lives today as they know it.
I will always be grateful to Tiki for this, and now my advice to you the listener, is enjoy this story over and over, as much as you can. Let this story become a part of your own history, and your view of the world. It has the potential to overcome prejudice, induce pride, clear conscience, and allow a new, more tolerant, loving and understanding society.
“Please enjoy it as much as I have.”
~Annelise Noronha Recording Engineer, “Lift Every Voice & Sing!: The Roots of Gospel Music”
“Thankfully, on occasion, I have the opportunity to satisfy both my love of production and my desire to work with gifted people to produce something special. Tiki Mercury-Clarke and “Lift Every Voice and Sing!: The Roots of Gospel Music” are indeed special.
Never before have I witnessed a concert performance at the beginning of a recording session. Tiki, of course, referred to this as “warming up.” Engineer, Annelise, and I called it amazing. It was, however, Tiki’s enormous and diverse talents and her dedication to the history of a great music that I found to be inspiring in the greatest way.
“The challenge, right from our earliest meetings, was to produce a credible, entertaining, refreshing “telling” of a music and a people whose history have been so often mistold. Meeting the challenge meant showcasing Tiki’s vision, well-crafted script, captivating narrative, moving arrangements and blessed voice. Meeting the challenge meant working with Annelise Noronha, a gifted engineer who delivered excellent sound and design in a great sounding room at Manta DSP.
“I am sure you will agree that the experience you hold in your hands has met and surpassed the challenge. I encourage you to listen, learn, and most of all SING!
~ Quammie Williams Producer, “Lift Every Voice & Sing!: The Roots of Gospel Music”