Raw footage for "Chicago Slices," a series documenting life in and around Chicago. This video documents the 1993 Gospel Fest in Grant Park, featuring The Rutledge Sisters: 13 year-old Charlotte and 10 year-old Denise, a dynamic and powerful pair. This tape shows them on stage performing, as well as backstage for an interview along with their God sister Bridget Campbell.
00:00Copy video clip URL The tape opens with a shot of walking down the aisle through the crowd at Gospel Fest in Grant Park. The Gospel Choir is on stage.
02:30Copy video clip URL The Rutledge Sisters are introduced and take the stage in matching yellow shirts and black pants. The sisters begin their song, but one of the microphones does not function properly, so they share a mic. They finish their song and leave the stage.
06:12Copy video clip URL Videomakers Deb Ellis and Tobi Johnson walk around backstage and go downstairs to a crowded room where performers are hanging out.
08:00Copy video clip URL Denise, age 10, and Charlotte, age 13, introduce themselves, and say they’ve been singing since they were two years old. They are joined by Bridget Campbell, who is their God sister and often sings with them. Charlotte talks about their recordings with Bridget.
10:20Copy video clip URL Charlotte says that she feels great when she gets a song out, and it makes her feel good to help people through her music. She likes to use music to share a positive message. The two talk about their songs and the message, citing the Biblical story of the raising of Lazarus as the inspiration of their song, “Mary Don’t You Weep.” They say they practice a lot and claim that their voices come from God because their dad prayed to have children who could sing. Charlotte talks about the motivation to keep singing through the message of the song, “Hold On.”
15:30Copy video clip URL Charlotte says that she wants to be a lawyer when she grows up, and Denise wants to be a doctor or a lawyer. Charlotte continues to say that God has blessed them in many ways because they have been able to travel and record their music.
17:25Copy video clip URL The camera cuts to the hallway, where they repeat the interview, this time without so much background noise. They say they grew up with Gospel music and list the various venues where they have sung. Charlotte talks about the inspiration to hold on and keep going with her music, and Denise says that Gospel music gives you a feeling and helps “loosen up the spirit that you have inside.”
19:55Copy video clip URL Charlotte says that singing relaxes her and that the music helps other people to “stay in the race” and encourages them, saying that the music comes from God. She again tells the story of how her dad prayed for children who could sing, and they came along. Charlotte explains that their second album is about to come out, and that they want to sing and take their message everywhere.
21:45Copy video clip URL The sisters say their favorite place to which they have traveled is Memphis. Charlotte says that she wants to be a lawyer when she grows up because she’s good at settling arguments. Denise says that she wants to be either a doctor or a lawyer because she wants to help people.
23:40Copy video clip URL The interview finishes, and the girls explain that they were running late to get there, so their stuff is everywhere. Charlotte says that they don’t really get nervous any more because they’ve gotten used to performing. Charlotte introduces Bridget, who says that she is a soprano but sings alto with Charlotte. They then talk about what they like to do for fun together, and joke about how quiet Denise is being at the moment.
26:10Copy video clip URL Back outside, the tape finishes by walking out of the Gospel Fest and into the underground parking garage.
28:29Copy video clip URL End of tape.