Negro spirituals were composed and sung by African slaves. It is usually sung in call and response were there was a singer leading the song and a choir would respond. Negro spiritual is the largest and most known type of folk song until it became out played in 1865 with the abolishment of slavery. However it has still been passed through oral traditions. 

Elements of Negro Spirituals include ring shout, double entente, and call and response. Work song is also an element of negro spirituals. Slave workers would sing the songs while working in fields, railroads, and doing construction. There were joyful negro spirituals with a fast beat and also sad and sorrow negro spirituals that were most popular.  

In modern day time, negro spirituals are sung and played by orchestras and choirs. Negro spirituals have had lots of influence on different genres. Two of them being jubilee quartets and gospel. Many gospel songs have came from the origination of negro spirituals, with songs being re vamped and sung by gospel choirs. Jubilee quartets were negro spirituals with a faster beat added.