Apparently, both Albertina Walker and Malhalia Jackson were known as The Queen of Gospel at various times. She probably inherited the title. Jackson took the young Walker on the road and the two became friends.
Albertina’s gift in music ministry and unselfish commitment to humanity for over six decades has earned her many awards and honors. Among them, a 1995 Grammy Award for the Best Traditional Gospel Album (Songs of The Church); 10 Grammy Award nominations; 5 Gold Records; 3 Stellar Awards; several Gospel Music Workshop of America Excellence Awards; an induction into the 2001 Gospel Music Hall of Fame in Nashville, Tennessee. Albertina is featured in the book entitled Who’s Who In Black America, and has received several keys to various cities, she was honored at the Chicago Gospel Festival where a bench bearing her name was placed in downtown Chicago’s Grant Park. The City of Chicago paid tribute to Albertina by renaming 35th and Cottage Grove “Albertina Walker and The Caravans Drive”. Conferred upon Albertina, the honorary Doctor of Letters Degree by the Chicago Theological Seminary, an institution of the University of Chicago Illinois. President Bush honored Albertina for her contribution to gospel music May 31, 2002, the ceremony held at the White House declaring the month of June as Black Music Month. (Continue Reading…)
This is the start of Walkers’ obituary in The New York Times. She died in October, 2010:
Albertina Walker, a gospel singer with a lush contralto voice whose group, the Caravans, recorded a string of hits in the 1950s and 1960s and nourished the careers of such greats as the Rev. James Cleveland, Inez Andrews and Pastor Shirley Caesar, died on Friday in Chicago. She was 81. (Continue Reading…)
Digital Dream Door’s take on what was hot way back then:
-T-Bone Walker: Stormy Monday -Mahalia Jackson: Move on Up a Little Higher -Bill Monroe: Blue Moon of Kentucky -Dusty Fletcher / Louis Jordan / Count Basie: Open the Door, Richard -Johnny Moore: Merry Christmas, Baby -Hank Williams: Move it On Over -Louis Jordan: Jack, You’re Dead -Tex Williams: Smoke, Smoke, Smoke (That Cigarette) -Julia Lee: King Size Papa -Savannah Churchill: I Want to be Loved (But Only By You)