Great job on Dunbar heritage
Rachel Willis, what a great service you have done for Dunbar and San Marcos in your Our Town feature on 10-21-2018. In my recent journalistic efforts I covered some of the black churches. All, without exception, had music as a major component of thieir services. At the risk of slighting some of the churches I attended, I would single out “The Other First Baptist Church” on Mitchell Street and the Greater Bethel Baptist Church on Centre Street as bringing A Most Joyful Noise.
Thank you for introducing us to Doctor (Elvin) Holt and his history of the choirs and other musicians with roots in San Marcos. In the churches I attended, music was not an adjunct to worship, it was worship in the most devout sense. We are blessed in this community to have this music to continue the traditions began in slavery.
Close your eyes and try to visualize the reconstructed First Baptist Church on MLK hosting the combined choirs of the “Other” First Baptist, The Greater Bethel Baptist, the Jackson Chapel choir, the AME Choir, and others I have slighted unintentionally, Making a Joyful Noise.