Heavenly Sight: A Vision Found

Since the time of Aristotle, blind seers have been regarded as bearers of special insight. Correspondent David Marash brings us the stories, music and this insight from the blind gospel traditionthat transformed American song. In this hour-long audio documentary we'll hear from: Arizona Dranes, The Blind Boys of Alabama, Blind Willie Johnson, Ray Charles, Flora Molton, Reverend Gary Davis and more.

Heavenly Sight: Black Gospel's Blind Singers

Despite disability, poverty, isolation and prejudice, a surprising number of blind African American singers who came from the gospel tradition would influence not just gospel music, but blues, bluegrass, and American vernacular music up to and beyond rock and roll.


Jimmy Carter—lead singer, The Blind Boys of Alabama
Dave Marash—host/journalist
Lee Breuer—co-creator/director The Gospel at Colonus
(MacArthur Fellow)
Dr. Kip Lornell—ethnomusicologist
Henry Butler—blind musician, composer, educator
David Bromberg—guitarist/bandleader
(former Leadboy for Rev. Gary Davis)
Dr. Bernice Johnson Reagon—musicologist and performer
Dr. Jerma Jackson—cultural historian
Valerie Capers—blind musician and composer
Ray Charles—blind musician, arranger

Support Provided By

More Wcpn Schedule
More Wclv Schedule
90.3 WCPN
WCLV Classical 104.9
NPR Hourly Newscast
The Latest News and Headlines from NPR
This text will be replaced with a player.
This text will be replaced with a player.
This text will be replaced with a player.