Transitional gospel can be defined as ‘holiness-pentecostal-style’ music. This kind of gospel emerged in the 40s with artist like sister Rosetta Tharpe paving the way. Transitional gospel was influenced by the doctrines of the holiness movement, it was even common for church services to be filled with spirited congregational singing and even shouting. Transitional style gospel music was very soulful and you could hear a lot of the instrumental influence as well.
Sister Rosetta Tharpe was influential as she started off with gospel and then transitioned into rock ‘n’ roll. Tharpe moved to Chicago when she was six and that’s when she joined a church. By the young age of 10 she was listed as an all purpose musician. Her gospel music soared through the 30s and 40s. Sister Tharpe incorporated the guitar which make her music more authentic. She really influenced the transitional gospel style.
Transitional gospel is much different from the new gospel we hear these days i.e the era of early 200s to present. 200s gospel can be defined as praise music. This style of gospel music includes the church choir as well as repetition in the lyrics and and really funky beats. This new style of gospel also incorporates talking whilst singing i.e Kirk Franklin. 200s gospel is essentially worship music.
Kirk Franklin is one of the leading contemporary gospel artist. In 1992 Franklin formed the Family which consisted of a 17 member choir. The group debuted in 1993 with a Kirk Franklin & the Family album which charted Billboards gospel’s chart for 42 weeks. The album even crossed over the R&B and Pop charts and even went platinum.
Transitional style gospel and 200s style gospel vary in. so many ways but it’s important to note the impact transitional gospel had on gospel as a whole genre. Transitional style gospel prompted the evolutionary style of gospel.