The songs were recorded for Decca Records and backed by Lucky Millinder’s jazz orchestra.Those were the first gospel songs ever recorded by Decca.In 1938, when she was 23, Sister Rosetta left her husband and moved to New York City along with her mother.After relocating to New York, Sister Rosetta recorded for the first time and all four of her songs–“That’s All,” “The Lonesome Road,” “My Man,” and “Rock Me”–were instant hits. Described by Joan Wasser as "punk rock R&B" and "American soul music," Joan as Police Woman combines two of the biggest influences on her music: classic soul such as Al Green and Nina Simone and the rougher experimental sounds of Sonic Youth and Bad Brains.
But Transangelic Exodus is noticeably different to its predecessors. “While the political and cultural conversation devolved in a very threatening way, we travelled and toured a lot.Or, in the vernacular of the new album, on the run.“The narrative thread,” Furman declares, “is I’m in love with an angel, and a government is after us, and we have to leave home because angels are illegal, as is harbouring angels.The term ‘transangelic’ refers to the fact people become angels because they grow wings. And it causes panic because some people think it’s contagious, or it should just be outlawed.” “The album still works without the back story, though,” he vouches.In fact, she was shunned by many members of the gospel community while the critics paid her no greater compliment than she was “almost playing like a man.”Not much is known about Sister Rosetta’s childhood, but some researchers believe her father was a singer, as was her mother, Katie Harper, who was also a mandolin player.Tharpe was born in 1915 as Rosether Atkins, and as a child, she accompanied her evangelist mother at COGIC–Church of God in Christ–where Katie Harper preached.