LARGO

Created on 15/10/2020
Latest update on 04/04/2021

Artist: Antonin Dvorák
Author: Antonin Dvorak
Year: 1893

Second movement of his 9th Symphony, op. 95 (New World Symphony), created by the New York Philharmonic conducted by Anton Seidl. Dvorak who as an outsider esteemed the African and native components at least on equal level as the European within the American musical spectrum, was inspired by spirituals for this movement, without copying existing melody lines. In 1922 his pupil William Amos Fisher turned this Largo theme into a full blown gospel and funeral favorite, even for US Presidents (Franklin D. Roosevelt, Gerald Ford).

Covers:

1922:

William Amos Fisher [pupil of Dvorak as Goin' Home, spiritual eventually becoming the state song of Iowa]

1923:

Reinald Werrenrath [oldest recording as Goin' Home (Victrola)]

1948:

Jan Clayton [idem in film The Snake Pit]

1949:

Art Tatum [idem; swing version]

1958:

Paul Robeson [idem; at Carnegie Hall]

1960:

Odetta [idem]

1964:

Albert Ayler [idem]

1965:

Stanley Turrentine [idem]

1977:

Horace Parlan [idem]

2000:

Van Morrison-Lonnie Donegan-Chris Barber [idem during The Skiffle Sessions]

2016:

Yo-Yo Ma [idem; with The Silk Road Ensemble; vocal: Abigail Washburn]

Truly visionary the way Dvorak pushed the black component central stage when it come to define American music as an entity. More than half a century later, The Rolling Stones on their first US tour refused to perform live unless Howlin' Wolf opened up for them. Howlin' who?
The first movement of this New World Symphony inspired Serge Gainsbourg; see: Symphony N°9 in E minor. Not to be confused with three other original Goin' Home's (see there).

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