After a long hiatus, the podcast returns for a brief but mighty season 3! Our opener is Stephen Okey’s interview with Kim and Reggie Harris. In spring 2017, they were at Saint Leo University as part of the Woodrow Wilson Visiting Fellows program for Saint Leo’s Black History Month celebrations. During the interview, they spoke with Steve about the influence of African-American spirituals in their faith lives, how they brought their music into education, and the interrelationship of music and history. Kim also reveals how she maintained a full-time touring schedule while working on her Ph.D. at Union Theological Seminary and how she arranged a setting of the Catholic mass around the spirituals. Moreover, for the first time on the podcast, the guests sing!
Kim and Reggie Harris are widely regarded musicians, storytellers, and educators, who have toured extensively throughout the United States and the world. Kim is a Visiting Professor in Theological Studies at Loyola Marymount University and a liturgical consultant for the Office of Black Ministry in the Archdiocese of New York. She earned a Ph.D. from Union Theological Seminary. Her dissertation project included creating “Welcome Table: A Mass of Spirituals,” along with M. Roger Holland II. Reggie is the Music Director for the Living Legacy Project, which focuses on civil rights and is affiliated with the Unitarian Universalist Church. Together they have produced numerous albums, including “Steal Away: Songs Of The Underground Railroad” (1998), “Let My People Go! A Jewish and African American Celebration of Freedom” (2005), “Get On Board! Underground Railroad & Civil Rights Freedom Songs, Vol. 2” (2007), and “Resurrection Day” (2012).
Special thanks to Saint Leo University’s School of Arts and Sciences for making this interview possible.
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