RIck, that's quite a story. That, and something you wrote in the other thread got me thinking. You mentioned how you can get into whaling songs and songs of other "non-Rick" activities. I certainly know what you mean and perhaps what we are feeling is the power of certain genres of songs to create community - sometimes between the performer and the audience and sometimes just between the singer and the groups who used to sing those same songs fifty, a hundred, a hundred and fifty years ago.
Pete Seeger likes to use the metaphor of our being links in a chain. There are certain songs, among them gospel, that singing them makes me feel snug and secure in my place as a link in that chain.