Born on June 28, 1920 in Atlanta, Georgia
Interviewed by Eric Majette
2005 Visionary Heritage Fellow
Third Place NVLP Scholarship Winner
Sara Roebuck McKissick is a famous lady of song, and has been one of the leading torchbearers of gospel and spiritual music for over sixty years.
She has traveled and recorded with such greats as Albertina Walker and the World Famous Caravans (whose membership included Pastor Shirley Caesar, Inez Andrews, Josephine Howard (Mother of R&B singer, Miki Howard), Dorothy Norwood and Cassietta George). She has also worked with the Lucy Smith Singers, the Roberta Martin Singers, the Jessy Dixon Singers and the Chicago Community Choir, the Dorothy Norwood Singers, Rev. Milton Brunson and the Thompson Community Singers.
Mrs. McKissick along with the Lucy Smith Singers sung at the funeral of Emmet Louis Till (the fourteen-year-old whose lynching kicked off the start of the Civil Rights Movement).
Mrs. McKissick was born June 28, 1920 in Atlanta, Georgia. She was educated in the Atlanta Public School System and upon graduation was extended a scholarship to Clark Atlanta University. While growing up she was a member of the Mt. Vernon Baptist Church.
When she moved from Atlanta to Chicago she joined the Mt. Pisgah Baptist Church. Little did she know that the church musician was the famous pianist and founder of the world’s first touring gospel group, Ms. Roberta Martin of the Roberta Martin Singers. While at Mt. Pisgah, Mrs. McKissick sang in the Radio Broadcast Choir, served on the Courtesy Guild, the Finance Committee and directed the Young People’s Choir, “the Angelics”. She met her husband, Norsalus McKissick of the Original Roberta Martin Singers, while in Philadelphia working with gospel legend Clara Ward.
Mrs. McKissick is a recipient of numerous awards and recognitions, and has showcased her beautiful gift of music throughout the United States at such prestigious venues as Carnegie Hall, Madison Square Garden, The Apollo Theatre, St. Louis’ Kiel Opera House, Radio City Music Hall and the Abyssinian Baptist Church.
URL (Click to bookmark): http://www.visionaryproject.org/mckissicksara