Music of the Movement: Ain’t Gonna Let Nobody Turn Me Round

In 1961 the Freedom Riders set out to protest segregation in interstate travel, leaving from Washington, D.C. into the Deep South. Their buses were ambushed and burned; their bodies beaten by mobs, the Klan and Southern police.

Many of them ended up in Mississippi’s Parchman Penitentiary, charged with trespassing. Voices rose out of the cells, expressing their determination, often singing “Ain’t Gonna let Nobody Turn Me Round.”

This continues a survey of songs of the Civil Rights era, leading up to the dedication of the Rev. Martin L. King, Jr. memorial on August 28.

Here’s a rendition from Sweet Honey in the Rock.

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