Dear Editor,

“Sacred Harp” singers don’t get the respect that they deserve. There is not much singing going on in this county. I know of two churches in this county that has annual singings: Liberty and Antioch. Other churches has dropped the singings that used to be forty or fifty years ago.

Most folks in this generation don’t know what you are talking about when mentioning them. The singing and the melodies are too good to let it go extinct or die out. The singers usually center at the senior center on the last Tuesday of the month from March to October.

The tunes and the auhtors that wrie the poems that are the music, there is much history there. These songs are inspired as they are written. There are songs written about heaven, hell and death. There is truth to those songs.

I know that musical styles change from time to time. Sacred Harp songs go back to 1500-1600, and plenty of songs written since then. Do you know that “Southern Gospel” has its roots in Sacred Harp? Don’t take my word for it, check the internet.

I hope that it will be around after I’m dead and gone. When the tunes are sung right, there is no music on this Earth that inspires me as Sacred Harp. I know there are plenty of folk that don’t like this music. If the younger generation don’t take it up, tell me, who will?

Jerry Turlington, Fort Payne, Alabama

Send letters to the Times-Journal by writing P.O. Box 680349, Fort Payne, AL 35968. Fax 256-845-7459. Email emily.kirby

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