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Lyr Req: God Walks the Dark Hills (Vestal Goodman)

keberoxu 18 Sep 18 - 07:55 PM
GUEST 18 Sep 18 - 08:14 PM
keberoxu 19 Sep 18 - 08:41 AM
wysiwyg 19 Sep 18 - 08:59 AM
keberoxu 20 Sep 18 - 12:49 PM
leeneia 21 Sep 18 - 09:49 AM
keberoxu 23 Sep 18 - 02:23 PM
keberoxu 23 Sep 18 - 03:14 PM
keberoxu 12 Mar 19 - 11:37 AM
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Subject: Vestal Goodman: God Walks the Dark Hills
From: keberoxu
Date: 18 Sep 18 - 07:55 PM

The Goodman family of singers were Pentecostal Christians.
The married couple,
Howard "Happy" Goodman and Vestal Goodman,
have gone to their reward,
but they sang and performed and ministered together for many years.

When Bill Gaither's television homages to Christian music/hymns
were being recorded and broadcast,
he brought in the Goodmans to perform on his shows,
and by then they were advanced in years
and their voices, sad to say, past their prime.

In the attached video, which I found to be very LOW and soft in sound volume,
Vestal Goodman sings
God Walks the Dark Hills

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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Vestal Goodman: Dark Hills
Date: 18 Sep 18 - 08:14 PM

The author of "God Walks The Dark Hills," it should be noted,
is a different woman.
Her name was Audra Czarnikow

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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Vestal Goodman: Dark Hills
From: keberoxu
Date: 19 Sep 18 - 08:41 AM

the preceding GUEST is keberoxu / me, by the way,
the computer I was on logged me off, cookie-free. Careless of me.


God walks the dark hills, the highways and byways,
He walks o'er the billows of life's troubled sea
He walks in the cold dark shadows of midnight
God walks the dark hills for you and for me.

First Chorus:
God walks the dark hills to guide my footsteps
He walks everywhere by night and by day
He walks in silence down the lone highway
God walks the dark hills to show me the way.

God walks in the storm, the rain and the sunshine
He walks in the shadows of glimmering light
He walks o'er the mountains, the rivers and valleys
God walks the dark hills to guide you and me.

Final Chorus:
God walks in silence in the stillness of midnight
He walks in your Garden of Gethsemane
He walks through the halls and aisle of the Temple
God walks the dark hills to guide you and me.

&Copy; Audra Czarnikow

full names: maiden name Audra Louise Allen, married name Czarnikow
now deceased

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From: wysiwyg
Date: 19 Sep 18 - 08:59 AM

Lyric in post just previous

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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Vestal Goodman: Dark Hills
From: keberoxu
Date: 20 Sep 18 - 12:49 PM

Here is a little more about Vestal Goodman from
The Gospel Music Hall of Fame.

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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Vestal Goodman: Dark Hills
From: leeneia
Date: 21 Sep 18 - 09:49 AM

Thanks keberoxu. I listened and enjoyed it.

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Subject: God Walks the Dark Hills (Audra Czarnikow)
From: keberoxu
Date: 23 Sep 18 - 02:23 PM

About author Audra Czarnikow, a little more information is available.
Two of my sources for information are these webpages:
Song Stories: God Walks the Dark Hills
Audra Czarnikow's great-niece Victoria (blog)

You may link to the above pages to read all the details;
this post will provide a brief summary thereof.

Audra Czarnikow died 1994 in Oklahoma.
She was born Audra Louise Allen, on January 6, 1904, somewhere in Oklahoma,
to John Wesley Allen and Cynthia (sometimes spelled 'Synthia')   Ann Allen, née Vaughan.
Audra L. Allen was one of several children,
whose names include David, John Wesley junior, Villa, Mary Adeline, and Eric.
You will hear more about Audra's brother Eric later on.

Czarnikow is Audra Louise's married name, and she married late in life.
Her husband was George Czarnikow who was born in 1892.
He was a widower;
with Arvilla English, his first marriage, he was co-parent
of Ida Thelma Czarnikow and Bonita Beatrice Czarnikow, as well as Evelyn,
born before 1930.
George was an Arkansas native, and his first wife is buried there.
Arvilla English Czarnikow died in 1930 at the age of 32 years.

I will submit this post and continue in a later post.

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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: God Walks the Dark Hills (Vestal Goodman)
From: keberoxu
Date: 23 Sep 18 - 03:14 PM

Audra Czarnikow's great-niece Victoria (link in previous post)
writes of her great-aunt's life before marriage.

Victoria writes of Audra Louise Allen being a quiet, gentle woman
who dedicated her life to her Lord and Saviour.
A prayer warrior and a church-going Christian.
When she was younger, there was a serious relationship with a man who wanted her to marry him;
when she called off the wedding, it was because
the man made it clear that her time was to belong to her husband,
but she had already given herself to her God
and she intended to stay with God and let that man go.

Then this devout Christian, during prayer and worship,
was startled by a message she received in her mind's ear.
She had somehow encountered the widower George Czarnikow,
and during the church service,
she was "told" that God had sent George to her,
and George would be the one to marry her.

Quoting Victoria's blog:
"God wanted Audra to have a husband,
and he was so perfect for her.
He would step back and let her work for the Lord and also help.
He was not a selfish man, and he loved her
and never resented her for all the work she did for Jesus.
She married at 50.
That is not too old to marry,
and they had, I think, 28 years of a wonderful marriage."   

Victoria ventures so far as to state
that prophecy was God's gift to Audra Czarnikow,
and that people travelled to her so that she could pray over them
and possibly receive a word or a prophecy for them.
Liberty, Oklahoma was her home by this time.

At some point, Audra Czarnikow, having
written words and music for "God Walks the Dark Hills,"
had the song recorded -- no one says who performed on this session --
on a reel-to-reel tape. And then she went back to work.

The story now moves from Oklahoma
to Fort Smith, Arkansas, where the newspaper was called
The Fort Smith Times Record.
Two co-workers at the Fort Smith Times Record were
Ray Lewis, a gospel singer who had formed a musical group
called The Hallelujah Minstrels;
and Eric Allen, Audra's brother.

Eric Allen attended a performance by Ray Lewis's Hallelujah Minstrels,
and began following Ray Lewis at work,
repeatedly urging his co-worker
to listen to this new song that Eric's sister had written.
Because, the Hallelujah Minstrels were making plans to
travel to Nashville and record an album of singing.
Their repertoire was already chosen.
Only the funds were absent.

After a couple of months, Eric Allen confided to Ray Lewis,
that (Eric)'s sister Audra was financially well-enough situated
that she could contribute funds towards
the recording of the Hallelujah Minstrels' first album
in return for having her song included on the album.

Quoting Ray Lewis (in "Song Stories," link in previous post on this thread):
" ... I couldn't even remember what the song sounded like.
All I could think of was,
'We've got the money, we've got the money!
Now we can go to Nashville and make our record!' "

"God Walks The Dark Hills" was the title of
the Hallelujah Minstrels' Nashville album.
Audra Czarnikow, who was roughly 69 years of age at the time,
had the song copyrighted in her name.
And from there,
Howard "Happy" Goodman and his family musical group
learned of the song.
The Goodmans recorded a number of songs
written by Ray Lewis of the Hallelujah Minstrels.
Most relevant to this story,
the Goodmans learned through Ray Lewis and his musical group of
"God Walks the Dark Hills,"
and it became standard Southern-Gospel repertory
thanks to Vestal Goodman's singing, recording, and performing of the song.

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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: God Walks the Dark Hills (Vestal Goodman)
From: keberoxu
Date: 12 Mar 19 - 11:37 AM

A note about the tune for this song.
I needed time to step back from listening,
in order to recall why the tune sounded familiar.

The tune reminds me strongly of
the song by Bob Ferguson,
"The Wings of a Dove."

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