Akers, Doris (Mae)
- Horace Clarence Boyer
(b Brookfield, MO, May 21, 1923; d July 26, 1995). American gospel singer, pianist and composer. She began piano lessons when she was five and by the age of ten was playing for her church choir. She started to compose while still in her teens. Later she moved to California and formed the Simmons-Akers Singers, with whom she remained until the mid-1950s. Thereafter she served as music director for various white congregations, composing and performing in a style more closely associated with white gospel. She was therefore only modestly successful in black gospel circles, although many of her compositions are standards among black singers, including Lead me, guide me (1953), You can’t beat God giving (1957), Sweet, sweet spirit (1972) and Lord, don’t move the mountain (1972). Her songs have been recorded by George Beverly Shea and Mahalia Jackson and were sung by the Stamps Quartet in the documentary film about Elvis Presley, ...