Jubilee quartets began to be established in the late 1800s after slavery was abolished, but many of its characteristics were influenced by Negro spirituals. The first quartet can be traced to the Fisk Jubilee Singers, who sang Negro spirituals and paved the way for many other students at Historically Black Colleges and Universities to form quartets and travel to showcase their music. Quartets, specifically African-American quartets, can be defined by how many harmony parts are present. These groups were usually made up of four or more musicians, usually males whose vocal styles include harmonization and call and response.
Jubilee quartets were important in the Black community because it represented unity and showed the world how beautiful music can sound when soulful voices come together. These groups influenced the younger generation to form their own quartets, which generated income into the Black community. Some of the most popular Jubilee Quartet groups include the Golden Gate Quartets and the original Five Blind Boys of Alabama.
While there are not many proclaimed modern quartets or Jubilee quartets, the genre still remains relevant today. This style of music has and will influence many genres, some more apparent than others. One of the most popular genres, Rock and Roll, incorporated most of the styles and elements of the Jubilee Quartets, but has yet to acknowledge its roots. For example, Elvis Presley loved to deem that his music was original, but stole music from the Golden Gate Quartets without providing any formal request or recognition.