1880-1929: Jubilee Period
1930-1945: Transitional Period
“I Couldn’t Hear Nobody Pray” by the Fisk University Jubilee Quartet
The Jubilee Period
In 1871 four black men, two of which were former slaves, from Fisk University’s Jubilee Quartet introduced the world to “slave songs.”
This group of men was composed of two tenors, a baritone, and a base. They also only sang acapella.
The Transitional Period
During this period the Jubilee Quartets transitioned into gospel and performance style singing.
Unlike during the Jubilee period there were sometimes multiple soloist during one song.
This group, Golden Gate Quartet, was formed in 1934. They were so well known because they sang in churches and on the radio.
The beat in this particular song eventually became an R&B beat.
“Golden Gate Gospel Train” by the Golden Gate Quartet
A combination of a few early Gospel songs
The Gospel Period
To some African Americans, this period seemed like a big change from the Jubilee period
During this period the singing groups got bigger and they added instruments. The soloist began to do more improvising and story telling during the songs.