Mahalia Jackson (New Orleans, 26 oktober 1911 – Chicago, 27 januari 1972) …
- Queen of Gospel
- A major icon for black America in the 1950s and 1960s
- She sang at the White House and she also met the pope in 1961
- An activist standing besides Martin Luther King (28 augustus 1963)
- And she sang at the funeral of Martin Luther King too, his favorite song.
The odd thing is, she totally looks like (white) Ms Zus Herbrink, born in Lemelerveld, the Netherlands. Before she got married, she was known as Marietje Neppelenbroek (1925-2014).
Zus Herbrink was Maud Oortwijn’s aunt. As a child, Maud Oortwijn every summer stayed a weekend with her aunt in Vilsteren, untill she was about 10 years old.
Right: Picture of Carnaval in Vilsteren, 1975. Ms Zus Herbrink is standing on the right, next to prince Carnaval, wearing red.
Them looking alike, becomes especially apparent in this interview. Zus Herbrink would only need a wig and amazingly good dark foundation, as she is for sure white. Her voice, the sound of her giggle, the eyes, eyebrows, cheeks, overall shape of face, mouth, teeth, movements of her head… it all looks exactly like Zus Herbrink, but with a brown skin.
We asked Maud about the racial backgrounds of her aunt. Maud herself tested her DNA and she is 100% Northern/Western European. So if Zus Herbrink is really her aunt, she must also be 100% Northern/Western European DNA-wise. We are certainly not racial purists, but do not appreciate being lied to on these matters, especially not when someone positions themselves as activists for black civil rights.
Ms Zus Herbrink was a quiet sweets Catholic grandma-type, wearing brown-grey grandma dresses and very sensible shoes, living in a small ydillic village in Holland. She ran a farm together with her husband Johan, untill he passed away. Ms Zus Herbrink did often work at the local church, helping out the vicar with the programme and flowers etc. Her daughter Ans sang in this church in Vilsteren, but as far as we know, Zus Herbrink did not. She was a positive, kind, smiling woman.
That’s what Maud could tell about her, what she remembered as a kid. Aunt Zus Herbrink always laughed a lot (giggling to herself), even when it was not clear what she was laughing about. Uncle Johan was more of a joker. Making fun of everything. They did have a very large elpee collection, but no visible wigs, no high heels and certainly no shiny short dresses or other soul outfits.
Unfortunatelly, Zus Herbrink passed away already. She would have been perfect as an actor for a movie about the life of Mahalia Jackson. Even her voice is similar. Zus Herbrink died in 2014, the internet tells us. Maud has not seen her since 1990, when Zus’ husband uncle Johan passed away (Maud attended the funeral, open cascade).
But we still have Tina Turner. She also has a similar shape in face and an amazing voice. She has a very typical Tina sound (like she has been singing too loud the day before). Oddly, with Mahalia Jackson, we hear that sound in Mahalia’s voice sometimes in interviews, especially when she laughs. And that laugh sounds a lot like Zus Herbrink. Her voice always sounded like she had been using her voice too loud the night before, but she did not came across as someone who would visit the local pub for more than a tea on Sunday afternoon. In short, Zus Herbrink would have been a perfect match for the film role of Mahalia Jackson. We are 100% sure.
Tina Turner, we are not 100% sure it is a perfect match, but she can certainly perform the role. Her voice. She need to simply gain 30 kg, loose the red lipstick and change her wig. And she should also take out her (very American) fake teeth.