Reverend sang on “race label” to combat racism


Paramount Records was a label that
exist for just 10 years really, little more than a
decade, starting in the early twenties and running through the depression. A fascinating record label, it was actually started by a chair company in Grafton, Wisconsin. They were making furniture you know they
had this idea that how do we get people into the stores to buy these new-fangled record players —
these machines. We’ll make records that they’re
gonna wanna buy! They also recorded a lot of regional performers whose names we don’t know
today, among them Reverend T.T. Rose. As a young man he was very interested music, playing the
piano that sort of thing. He was actually a
member of a the African Methodist Church but he loved the music he was hearing in the Church of God in Christ congregations, as
we call it the COGIC Church. He also had lofty goals.
He wanted to change the world, make the world a better place. He wanted
to eliminate … fight against racism anyway he could. And it was kind of interesting in the
20s, the record business it was new, totally new-fangled and he had the idea that maybe if he got on records he could use
phonograph recordings and the messages in his songs to bring about change
and … in the struggle for equal rights and
that was his motive for getting started in recording for the Paramount record
label.

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