This work was inspired by the traditional old-time gospel version of “Beulah Land” from Alan Lomax’s “Southern Journey Vol. 1: Voices from the American South.” It’s the result of two different recording trips to the Georgia Sea Islands during the ’50s and ’60s and is one of the essential documents of American folk music. From an original performance by the Georgia Sea Island Singers with the drum, fife, banjo and delightfully syncopated hand clapping, all led by John Davis with Bessie Jones as 2nd lead.
If you’re interested in the foundation from which nearly all American music originated, then hearing the “Southern Journey Vol. 1: Voices from the American South” is recommended.