The Last Blues Preacher: Reverend Clay Evans, Black Lives, and the Faith That Woke the Nation

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$26.99  $25.10
Fortress Press
Publish Date
6.1 X 9.1 X 1.3 inches | 1.3 pounds
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About the Author

Zach Mills is a communications scholar and public speaking consultant who studies race, religion, media, and popular culture. He earned an Mdiv focusing on social justice and an MA in preaching from Vanderbilt University, and a PhD in Rhetoric and Public Culture from Northwestern University.


"This book brings into cultural focus the sound, passion, and commitments of one of the most recognized voices in the history of black preaching and gospel musicology of the twentieth century. Rev. Evans reminded many of us growing up in Chicago every Sunday evening that 'there is room at the cross for you.' The Last Blues Preacher is a monumental gift to the black religious and cultural legacy of Rev. Evans." --Victor Anderson, Vanderbilt Divinity School

"In this book, Mills writes a sermonic and sonic anthem to the life of Reverend Clay Evans. This book not only offers readers a deeper description of the life of a son of the black church but also encourages leaders who desire to transform their communities and broader world. A must read." --Keri Day, Princeton Theological Seminary

"Rev. Clay Evans is a spiritual treasure. He is what many consider, a preacher's preacher. Through his understanding of the word, his social activism, and his commitment to his spirituality, Rev. Evans has carved out a unique niche steeped in a cultural tradition that has transcended generations. His contribution on this earth will be eternal." --Melody Spann Cooper, chairman and CEO of Midway Broadcasting Corporation and president of WVON Radio-Chicago

"The Last Blues Preacher tells of a pastor who used music, preaching, and a deep conviction to inspire, teach, and challenge. The story of Reverend Clay Evans is a story of Chicago politics, the black church experience, and the struggle for freedom. Rev. Evans used his pulpit to save the souls of individuals and save the soul of a city." --Michael Pfleger, senior pastor of The Faith Community of Saint Sabina in Chicago

"The voice of Clay Evans reverberates throughout this marvelous book. With a poet's passion and a professor's precision, Zach Mills chronicles Rev. Evans's tenacious faith and audacious creativity. After reading The Last Blues Preacher, you won't have the blues anymore. Your soul will sing gospel." --Brad R. Braxton, director of the Center for the Study of African American Religious Life at Smithsonian Institution