A special release of Joe Carter singing the spirituals from the On Being episode “Joe Carter — The Spirituals.” These songs were never made available as an album in his lifetime. All tracks were recorded live in studio in 2003, with Tom West on piano. There are nearly 5,000 spirituals in existence. Their organizing concept is not the melody of Europe, but the rhythm of Africa. They were composed by slaves, bards whose names we will never know, and yet gave rise to gospel, jazz, blues, and hip-hop. Joe Carter was a singer, performer, teacher, and traveling humanitarian. He lived and breathed the universal appeal and hidden stories, meanings, and hope in what were originally called “sorrow songs.” He performed for more than 25 years in opera and musical theater, portrayed Paul Robeson in a one-man musical, and introduced people around the world to the spiritual. Joe Carter died of leukemia at age 57, on June 26, 2006.