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Blind Boys play Santa Rosa / The Press Democrat

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The Blind Boys of Alabama play Santa Rosa's Wells Fargo Center this Sunday, Dec. 21 and the Press Democrat sat down for an interview with Blind Boys founding member Jimmy Carter, to discuss their new CD - Talkin' Christmas" with Taj Mahal.

"I'm a stickler for good diction," Carter says . "If you don't have good diction, me and you can't deal."

Over the past 70 years, since the band first sang together in 1944 at the Alabama Institute for the Blind in Talledega, the Blind Boys have collaborated with music royalty, recording the songs of everyone from Bob Dylan and Prince to Lou Reed and Tom Waits. Their last Christmas album, "Go Tell It On the Mountain," won a Grammy to add to their collection of five. This time around, they're spreading the gospel across the country, mixing up standards with eight new original songs, like the funky title track "Talkin' Christmas" that subs in the popular gospel refrain "Holy Ghost power!" for "Christmas power!"