The Fisk Jubilee Singers have been nominated for “Best Gospel Performance” as part of the 52nd Annual Grammy Awards. The Singers® and rock, gospel and blues vocalist Johnny Lang are featured on the song “I Believe” found on Lang’s album, “Oh Happy Day.”
Winners will be announced at the 52nd Annual Grammy Awards on January 31, 2010 in Los Angeles and the ceremony will be televised on CBS stations. The Jubilee Singers® and Johnny Lang are one of five nominees in the “Best Gospel Performance” category. The Jubilee Singers® were last nominated for a Grammy Award for their 2003 recording “In Bright Mansions.”
In November 2008, The Jubilee Singers® were awarded the National Medal of Arts, the nation’s highest recognition for artists, for their historical contribution to American music. Among the more than 200 previous recipients of the medal are writer Ralph Ellison, painter Georgia O’Keeffe, jazz musician Dizzy Gillespie, and illustrator Stan Lee. Tennesseans who have been awarded the medal include Dolly Parton and Johnny Cash.
As students, the Jubilee Singers® have excelled academically in fields as diverse as business, law, science and music. For the past decade, students at Fisk who earn slots as Jubilee Singers have maintained a graduation rate of 95 percent.
Since 1871, The Fisk Jubilee Singers® have served as one of America’s foremost a cappella ensembles and as the premier carriers of the Negro Spiritual. These songs were originally sung by slaves prior to the Civil War and have globally influenced many genres of music such as rhythm and blues, gospel and rock & roll.
In 1873, the Jubilee Singers performed for the crowned heads of Europe. The group’s earnings from that tour paid for the construction of Jubilee Hall, the first permanent building in America erected for the education of African-Americans.