Sam Lucas (August 7, c. 1848 – January 5, 1916) was an African American actor, comedian, singer, and songwriter. Sam Lucas's exact date of birth is disputed. Lucas's year of birth, to freed former slaves, has also been cited as 1839, 1840, 1841, and 1850.
His career began in blackface minstrelsy, but he later became one of the first African Americans to branch out into more serious drama, with roles in seminal works such as The Creole Show and A Trip to Coontown. He was the first black man to portray the role of Uncle Tom on both stage and screen. James Weldon Johnson described him as the "Grand Old Man of the Negro Stage". Despite his beginnings in minstrelsy, he was vocal about liberating himself from the minstrel profession, and was the only composer of spirituals of his time to present them consistently within the context of jubilee concerts.
Birth and Death Data: Born January 1st, 1850, Died January 5th, 1916
Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1916 - 1928
Roles Represented in DAHR: composer, lyricist, songwriter
|Company||Matrix No.||Size||First Recording Date||Title||Primary Performer||Description||Role||Audio|
|Victor||BVE-46396||10-in.||12/17/1928||Ring them heavenly bells||Frank McCravy ; James McCravy||Male vocal duet, with violin, harmonica, and banjo||songwriter|
|Columbia||47199||10-in.||11/29/1916||Southern medley||Fred Van Eps||Banjo solo, with orchestra||composer|
|Columbia||47469||10-in.||4/6/1917||Carve dat possum||Harry C. Browne ; Peerless Quartet||Male vocal solo and male vocal quartet, with banjo and orchestra||composer, lyricist|
|Columbia||79527||10-in.||11/19/1920||Dars a lock on de chicken coop door||Harry C. Browne ; Harmonizers Quartet||Male vocal solo and male vocal quartet, with banjo and orchestra||composer, lyricist|
|OKeh||W80961||10-in.||6/2/1927||Every day will be Sunday bye and bye||Tom Collins||Banjo solo, with male vocal solo||composer, lyricist|
Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Lucas, Sam," accessed November 26, 2020, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/116651.
Lucas, Sam. (2020). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved November 26, 2020, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/116651.
"Lucas, Sam." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2020. Web. 26 November 2020.
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