Contemporary English composer, singer and Vocal coach Betty Roe is best known for her church and Choral music, revue songs, music for schools and solo songs like these. This group of three songs sets poems of Langston Hughes concerning the feisty Alberta K Johnson who successfully sees off the census man, the minister and Death himself when they come calling.
Roe has set the three texts in bluesy, jazzy style with delightful, sliding and sinister tones to suggest the threat of death. While the score calls for Soprano, the highest note is F sharp and the lowest an F below middle C with quite a lot fo time spent in the lower register. A mezzo-Soprano would find this trio of works well within range.