A new musical at Seattle Rep celebrates the life of a musical revolutionary of the 1930s and ‘40s. “Shout Sister Shout” looks at the career of Sister Rosetta Tharpe, a musical revolutionary who is considered the godmother of rock ‘n’ roll. KNKX blues host John Kessler sits down with the lead actor and one of the show’s creators.
She’s been called a rock heroine, a trailblazer, a pioneer, all of it completely true, and yet Sister Rosetta Tharpe has been largely forgotten by history. Her musical innovation was to blend the passion of the church with the swagger of the blues, creating a sound that opened the door for people such as Elvis, Chuck Berry and Jerry Lee Lewis — rock ‘n’ roll.