Gospel/Spirituals

Music that explores themes of Christian belief and biblical history, and is popular among black and whites alike. Their renditions may differ significantly, in keeping with the cultural/stylistic traits of blues and old-time coun¬try/bluegrass, respectively. Early African American spirituals, church hymnody, and blues formed the basis for the rise of gospel music in the 1930s. Sacred music has many stylistic variations – 3 and 4 part harmony, shape-note, common meter hymn choir, call-and-response, and praise house are all a part of gospel’s foundation.

Content is provided by McKissick Museum, University of South Carolina.

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