Saturday, May 8, 2010

I sing because I’m happy, I sing because I’m free

Here, from 1975, is Ethel Waters singing “His Eye Is On The Sparrow (And I Know He Watches Me)” at the Billy Graham crusade in Jackson, Mississippi (3:31). It happened to be Mother’s Day, so this clip is almost exactly 35 years old. You will also see a much younger Cliff Barrows and a much younger Billy Graham.

Here is Ethel in a publicity photo for the 1942 movie Cabin in the Sky with co-stars Eddie “Rochester” Anderson and Lena Horne.

But do not make the mistake of thinking that Miss Waters had an easy life surrounded by peaches and cream. You can read more about her life and career here. Then go back and watch that video again.

Also, if there had been no Ethel Waters, there would probably be no this (4:27).


  1. Thanks, RWP. I have to say that I enjoyed Ethel's rendition more than the latter one, but it's wonderful to know that the song is still being sung. I saw Cabin in the Sky sometime in the 40's when we lived in NM, but the only actor I really remember from that production is Lena Horne.

  2. Hello dear RWP, did I spot you in the audience there? Row 23, seventh from the right? ;-)
    I'd sing too if I had a voice remotely sounding like one of those gorgeous voices.


  3. Thanks. You taught me something today.


  5. Thanks for this, Robert. The video reminded me of when Billy Graham visited Roker Park, the now defunct Football Stadium in Sunderland, England, in the early 1980's. It was filled to overflowing. I was asked to be a sign-language interpreter for the event and looking out over that sea of people was terrifying, but its also a great memory to have. x

  6. Thanks, everyone, for commenting.

    Pat, that's the movie Lena Horne sang "Stormy Weather" in, I think.

    Carolina, long time no hear from you! How are things in The (or not) Netherlands?

    Yorkshire Pudding, you're welcome, I'm sure. What was it?

    Putz, life.

    Elizabeth, I know some ASL (American Sign Language). Is it similar to English sign language or completely different?

  7. Hello again,
    things are just fine in the or The Netherlands. A bit too cold and somewhat too wet for my liking. Still, it gives me time to blog. If the weather would be nicer I'd be working in the garden. Healthwise I'm reasonably well. Extreme tiredness, for which I blame the Lyme disease, comes and goes.
    Glad to be back ;-) Missed you all.