Sometimes I Feel Like a Motherless Child
This article is about the Negro spiritual.
For the blues song, see Motherless Child Blues.
"Sometimes I Feel Like a Motherless Child" (or simply "Motherless Child") is a traditional Negro spiritual.
It dates back to the era of slavery in the United States.
An early performance of the song dates back to the 1870s by the Fisk Jubilee Singers.
Commonly heard during the Civil rights movement in the United States, it has many variations and has been recorded widely.
The song is an expression of pain and despair as the singer compares their hopelessness to that of a child who has been torn from her or his parents.
Under one interpretation, the repetition of the word "sometimes" offers a measure of hope, as it suggests that at least "sometimes" the singer does not feel like a motherless child.
Multiple recordings of the song were made by Paul Robeson, starting in 1926.
The song was included on her album, Odetta at Carnegie Hall the same year.
Sister Thea Bowman, FSPA recorded the song in 1988 for the stereocassette, "Songs of My People."
It was re-released in 2020 for the 30th anniversary of Sister Bowman's death as part of the digital album, .
Prince performed his rendition of the song at many concerts beginning in 1999.
Soprano Barbara Hendricks sang it when she received the 2002 Prince of Asturias Award for the Arts.
John Legend sang the song during the Hope for Haiti Now: A Global Benefit for Earthquake Relief telethon in 2010.
The song is also included on his 2004 album, Solo Sessions Vol. 1: Live at the Knitting Factory.
Credits to the contents of this page go to the authors of the corresponding Wikipedia page: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sometimes I Feel Like a Motherless Child.