Summary of the Song
The song People Get Ready by The Impressions was recorded in 1964 and released in 1965 – as a single and title track for the People Get Ready album. The song was written by Curtis Mayfield and produced by Johnny Pate. The song comprises a wake-up call to the people emphasizing the changes in the society and readiness of the people to change the course of history. The song’s statement that there is a train and that is coming is a presentation of a wave of change that is picking all passengers from coast to coast. Also, the song emphasizes the value of faith and trust in the Lord as the guide, provider, and absolute being that should be praised. The song asserts that there is no room for the hopeless sinners who hurt mankind. To endure the wrath of the coming train, one is required to change their life as a way to save their soul. As well, the lyrics assert that faith in the Lord is the driving force required to be part of the train.
History of the Song
The song was written in the times when civil rights movements in the United States and across the world were gaining momentum to change the course of people’s lives, governance, and perception of God. The song advocates the need of accepting the Lord in words and deeds as a way to save the soul. As a way of change sweeping across the world, the train is a symbol calling for the readiness of the people to ensure no one is left behind as society changes. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was one of the prominent users of the song as he utilized it as the unofficial anthem of the civil rights movement (Rajkumar, 2020). This illustrates the profound value and role the song played in agitating for the people’s freedom and rights in society. The train sweeping across the United States was integral to ensure all people are aboard to change the course and future of the community. The liberation was intended to save both the social-political and faith of the people in the Lord. Thus, continued trusting in God’s power was vital to saving the soul.
Thoughts on the Song
The song advocates for themes such as freedom, slavery, and civil rights in the United States and across the world. It advocated for fairness in society, equality, and the dignity of all people. These are critical features in the civil rights movements bound to end the slavery of the black folks, discrimination in the society, and superiority and inferiority of races. The need to save the soul is integral to ensure that there is a moral sense in the community once the wave of change was attained. This presents a high value on the song as it reminded the people to remember the core values of tenets of humankind. As a result, people’s souls, respect for the Lord, and faith are essential features to any course. Therefore, it is paramount to note that the song reminded the people to retain their humanity in all they pursued in life and society at large.