From the YouTube Music Video Archives: Sam Cooke

Before monster hits like Wonderful World and Chain Gang, Sam Cooke was in a gospel group called the Soul Stirrers. I heard Be With Me, Jesus on the radio this morning and thought, Man, I have to share this one. Did a little searching on YouTube and found a couple of other gospel hits by Sam: Where You There?, Jesus, Be A Fence and It Won’t Be Very Long.

The Soul Stirrers continued after Sam went solo, but you can still hear him in this later version of Be With Me Jesus.

Cooke died at the age of 33 on December 11, 1964, in Los Angeles, California, a fatal victim in a senseless shooting. The songs survive, of course, including the incredible A Change Gone Come.

Oh Lord, the time is growing nigh When I must breathe my last breath inside Lord in my dying hour Stay with me Jesus Oh Lord, my friends will gather ’round They’re watching me slowly, slowly sinking down Stay with me Jesus Now Lord, Lord, now Jesus time has come When I’m must my earthly home Friends standing around, till they know that I am about to die But I’m not worried, I’m not afraid…


  1. Sam's Neph says

    Sam’s gospel career includes many more gems than the ones you’ve mentioned, but these songs are a great place to start!

    And just like Wonderful World, Chain Gang, and A Change is Gonna Come, it’s important to note that Sam wrote Be With Me Jesus. He was truly a unique artist, and I thank you for sharing this blog with those who may not have been aware of his gospel works.

    Erik Greene
    Author, “Our Uncle Sam: The Sam Cooke Story From His Family’s Perspective”

  2. Quin Finnegan says

    Thanks for visiting Mr. Greene (interesting that you have a ‘e’ at the end of your last name, as there is at the end of Cooke). I didn’t know that he wrote Be With Me Jesus; he was certainly blessed with many talents – I’d like to read the book.

    All the best!

  3. Well when I was fifteen years old, I walked upon Sam going into Dooky Chase a restaurant. Boy that for ever made my day.My aunt lived across the street in the Laffete Housing project.He was so nice and of course handsome. I just wish I had a picture of that day. When he was killed it broke my heart. My Mother felt so sorry for me until this day we talk about Sam. I listen to his music all the time. I have Mr. Greens book Our Uncle Sam. I love you Sam. Sarah

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