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Voices of Black America: Historical Recordings of Speeches, Poetry, Humor & Drama

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This unique collection, compiled especially for Naxos AudioBooks, features original recordings from 1908-1946 of Booker T. Washington's Atlanta Exposition Address, the poetry of Paul Laurence Dunbar and Langston Hughes, rarely heard humor of Charley Case, readings from God's Trombones by James Weldon Johnson, and so much more. This unique collection, compiled especially for Naxos AudioBooks, features original recordings from 1908-1946 of Booker T. Washington's Atlanta Exposition Address, the poetry of Paul Laurence Dunbar and Langston Hughes, rarely heard humor of Charley Case, readings from God's Trombones by James Weldon Johnson, and so much more.


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This unique collection, compiled especially for Naxos AudioBooks, features original recordings from 1908-1946 of Booker T. Washington's Atlanta Exposition Address, the poetry of Paul Laurence Dunbar and Langston Hughes, rarely heard humor of Charley Case, readings from God's Trombones by James Weldon Johnson, and so much more. This unique collection, compiled especially for Naxos AudioBooks, features original recordings from 1908-1946 of Booker T. Washington's Atlanta Exposition Address, the poetry of Paul Laurence Dunbar and Langston Hughes, rarely heard humor of Charley Case, readings from God's Trombones by James Weldon Johnson, and so much more.

30 review for Voices of Black America: Historical Recordings of Speeches, Poetry, Humor & Drama

  1. 5 out of 5

    Jesse Field

    This was an incredible listen, one to go back to again and again. The sonorous phrasing of James Wheldon Johnson reading God’s Trombones is something every student of language or music should hear. Langston Hughes reads his own poetry, which ranges widely from folksy spiritual to deep introspection. I liked “Harlem Sweeties,” on the flavors of women: Have you dug the spill Of Sugar Hill? Cast your gims On this sepia thrill: Brown sugar lassie, Caramel treat, Honey-gold baby Sweet enough to eat. Peach-sk This was an incredible listen, one to go back to again and again. The sonorous phrasing of James Wheldon Johnson reading God’s Trombones is something every student of language or music should hear. Langston Hughes reads his own poetry, which ranges widely from folksy spiritual to deep introspection. I liked “Harlem Sweeties,” on the flavors of women: Have you dug the spill Of Sugar Hill? Cast your gims On this sepia thrill: Brown sugar lassie, Caramel treat, Honey-gold baby Sweet enough to eat. Peach-skinned girlie, Coffee and cream, Chocolate darling Out of a dream. Come to think of it, though, there are no women’s voices here. And I cannot tell who is acting in the Othello scene at the end. Some kind of introduction and listeners guide should have been supplied. But even so, the music of these voices have their own value. Borrowed from the San Antonio Public Library.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Faith

    This was incredibly disappointing. I wanted to hear the voices of people like Langston Hughes and Booker T. Washington, but the recording quality was so poor that much of it was unintelligible. That might have been unavoidable, but it is unforgivably sloppy that whoever put this compilation together failed to provide any introductions. There is no way of knowing to whom you are listening. Don’t bother.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Chelsea Ducote

    A lot of the recordings were pretty poor and difficult to understand through all the static. My favorite recording was the first of Booker T. Washigton’s speech about casting down your bucket here mainly because I didn’t know there were any recordings of him!! After reading his work, it was surreal to hear his voice across time. Same with Langston Hughes. The rest of this selection of works was just ok. Very dated and difficult to understand. The selection of works was odd. One second you had La A lot of the recordings were pretty poor and difficult to understand through all the static. My favorite recording was the first of Booker T. Washigton’s speech about casting down your bucket here mainly because I didn’t know there were any recordings of him!! After reading his work, it was surreal to hear his voice across time. Same with Langston Hughes. The rest of this selection of works was just ok. Very dated and difficult to understand. The selection of works was odd. One second you had Langston Hughes, the next some comedian. It does give a bit of perspective into the mindset of 1900-1940s Americans to actually hear what their entertainment sounded like. I agree with a previous reviewer, it would’ve been nice to hear an introduction before each recording so I would know what on earth I was listening to instead of it just skipping to the next.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Don

    ppld.org: Booker Washington, 1856-1915, VA Normal & Ag Inst and Tuskegee Normal & Ind Inst 81, Booker's controversial conviction that blacks could best gain equality in the U.S. by improving their economic situation through education rather than by demanding equal rights was termed the Atlanta Compromise, because Washington accepted inequality and segregation for blacks in exchange for economic advancement. Advised Presidents Teddy and Taft, started National Negro Business League in 90. ppld.org: Booker Washington, 1856-1915, VA Normal & Ag Inst and Tuskegee Normal & Ind Inst 81, Booker's controversial conviction that blacks could best gain equality in the U.S. by improving their economic situation through education rather than by demanding equal rights was termed the Atlanta Compromise, because Washington accepted inequality and segregation for blacks in exchange for economic advancement. Advised Presidents Teddy and Taft, started National Negro Business League in 90.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Rachel

    I really just wanted to listen to Langston Hughes on this audiobook. Unfortunately, there was only one recording of him reading one poem on the whole audiobook. Most of the rest of it was, as you might imagine given the time period, low quality recordings that were hard to follow. In addition to that, none of the recordings started with introductions for which author one was hearing.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Liz

    Three stars for not for content but for quality of recording and for lack of titles for each piece. There was no introduction for any of the recordings so you can’t tell what you’re listening to, who the author/performer was.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Andrial Durant

    Although titled as humorous stories, you can still tell the truth besides the words and dialect more-so Shakespearian. It was definitely a good listen.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Pinky

    This is a treasure. A glimpse into the past. Historical recordings of poetry, humor, and drama from 1908-1947. To hear Booker T. Washington and Langston Hughes read aloud is very special. I would have liked a brief intro before each segment because I wasn’t always sure who was speaking. Best to lose yourself in the words and voices and soak it up that way.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Daniel Bensen

  10. 4 out of 5

    Myrtle Engram

  11. 4 out of 5

    Sheba

  12. 5 out of 5

    Michael Bowman

  13. 5 out of 5

    Vanessah

  14. 5 out of 5

    Omowale Jabali

  15. 5 out of 5

    Keith

  16. 5 out of 5

    Chalen Kelly

  17. 4 out of 5

    Ruby

  18. 5 out of 5

    Lala

  19. 4 out of 5

    Emily

  20. 4 out of 5

    Marianne

  21. 5 out of 5

    Betsy

  22. 5 out of 5

    Krystal Peak

  23. 5 out of 5

    Mitchell Hahn-Branson

  24. 5 out of 5

    Sarah Fox

  25. 4 out of 5

    Briahna

  26. 4 out of 5

    Nazish Ali

  27. 5 out of 5

    Cj

  28. 4 out of 5

    Michael Winkler

  29. 5 out of 5

    Mckinley

  30. 4 out of 5

    Abby

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