Lucie Eddie Campbell

Short Name: Lucie Eddie Campbell
Full Name: Campbell, Lucie Eddie, 1885-1963
Birth Year: 1885
Death Year: 1963

Lucie Eddie Campbell, April 30, 1885–January 3, 1963, one of nine children born to parents who were slaves in Mississippi. She moved to Memphis with her mother after her father died when she was two years old. Became first Music Director of newly formed Education arm for the new National Baptist Convention formed in 1916 in Memphis. In 1919 at a NBC convention in Atlantic City, Campbell introduced a young, blind singer, Connie Rosemond, who electrified the delegates with his rendition of Campbell’s first gospel hymn, “Something Within.”

Campbell met Rosemond on the famous Beale St in Memphis. She heard a man betting $10 that he could make the blind youngster “get down in the alley” an expression for singing the blues. The young man refused to sing, saying I’m trying to be a Christian in this dark world, and I believe I have found a way out of this darkness into light. I can’t explain it, but there’s something within me. His words inspired Lucy Campbell to write her first song, Something Within, which was the first gospel hymn written by a
black woman.

At this same convention in 1919, Campbell introduced singer Marion Anderson to the world as she accompanied her. Anderson would go to become a world-renowned classical contralto singer. Lucie Campbell was also good friends with Thomas A Dorsey, who wrote Peace in the Valley and Precious Lord, Take My Hand, was the first African American inducted into the Gospel Music H.O.F.

Jim Westmoreland from "Lucie E. Campbell: Baptist Composer and Educator," by Luvenia A. George and Ada Gilkey in The Black Perspective in Music, Vol. 15, No. 1 (Spring, 1987), pp. 24-49.


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