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The Blind Boys of Alabama return to DC for Howard Theatre show / Washington Post Q&A

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Of the grade-school students who started singing together in 1939 at the Alabama Institute for the Negro Deaf and Blind, only a couple are still alive. And just one of the founding members, Jimmy Carter, continues to tour with the Blind Boys of Alabama. The group has performed for more than 75 years, meeting four presidents and playing the White House three times, and its acclaim has only grown in recent decades. Just since the new millennium, for example, the group, which has sung with such artists as Prince, Lou Reed and Ben Harper, has won a handful of Grammys. Its 2013 album, "I'll Find a Way," was recorded with Justin Vernon of Bon Iver; "Talkin' Christmas!" in 2014, with Taj Mahal.

The Blind Boys - Carter, Ben Moore, Eric "Ricky" McKinnie, Paul Beasley and Joey Williams - are returning to Washington this month with a show at the Howard Theatre. The Post spoke with Carter, 85, by phone from New York, where the group was recording, by some counts, its 61st studio album.    READ THE Q&A