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Blessings From a Blues Heart
November 3, 2014 | Sarah Asp Olson; excerpted from Thrivent magazine
One member spreads joy by singing the blues & serving her community
The first time Dorothy Moore sang in front of a paying audience was at the Alamo Theatre in Jackson, Mississippi. She was barely in junior high, but the little girl who sang the blues consistently won the theater's Wednesday night talent competitions.
"I called it my classroom," says Moore. "It was such a great place for me to learn what I'm doing today."
Moore went on to hone her craft with more than 40 years in the business. She broke onto the national scene in 1976 with the rhythm and blues hit "Misty Blue," and has since earned four Grammy nominations and released more than 20 albums.
Moore's most recent record, 2012's "Blues Heart," pays homage to her versatility – she sings rhythm and blues, jazz, blues and even country.
When asked how she describes herself, Moore says, "I am a rhythm and blues singer with a blues heart."
Moore's soulful sound gives listeners a glimpse into her tender heart, one with a soft spot for helping people – both in Jackson and among the body of Christ.
As a Thrivent member, Moore served as a liaison between her congregation, Trinity Lutheran in Jackson, and the local Thrivent chapter and financial representatives. She's hosted several Thrivent Financial benefits over the years, raising more than $12,000 for causes close to her heart. Chief among them: The Blues Foundation, which provides aid to struggling musicians.
Now 67, Moore continues to perform across the U.S. and all over the World – from cathedrals in Italy and England to a music festival in Jamaica. She runs her own record label, Farish Street Records of Mississippi. She also sits on the board of the Alamo Theatre, and she volunteers behind the concession counter.
"I stuff popcorn in boxes and sell drinks, stuff like that," she says. "I don’t get to be a star every day; I go back and work where I got my start. I enjoy doing something to show my appreciation, and that’s my way of doing that with my community."
1. Who inspires you?
My great-grandmother, who raised me, was and is my inspiration. I can almost say she is the reason I am who I am today. She supported my whole career.
2. Do you have hobbies?
I love to fish, and I like to listen to music.
3. What's your favorite Bible verse? Why?
My favorite chapter is the 23rd Psalm. It just says it right there: "The Lord is my Shepherd; I shall not want." I listen to God, and He guides me in everything I do.
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