The world-renowned Fisk Jubilee Singers have spent more than a century making a name for themselves as a talented music group. So, it wasn’t a surprise when they won their first Grammy award in March.
“It is a surreal experience,” says Andrew Davis, a singer in the ensemble. “It’s unbelievable. God’s grace and mercy has definitely sustained us.”
Music runs in Davis’ blood. His grandmother played the organ, and his mother is the minister of music at their church. His goal, Davis says, is to expose the world to the group’s creativity and a cappella art form.
— Damon Mitchell (@damonmtll_) April 8, 2021
The group’s celebration performance attracted nearly a half-dozen speakers to North Nashville Thursday, but it was the Fisk Jubilee Singers who captured everyone’s attention with tunes like, “The Gold and Blue,” Fisk Univerity’s alma mater song.
Paul Kwami, the director of the group, says the Grammy is just another stamp to cement the importance of the Fisk Jubilee Singers’ legacy.
“We are helping to preserve the Negro spirituals. And as long as we focus on doing that, and in addition to introducing other people to this music, I know that doors will be opened.”
Kwami says the album has been about five years in the making, pulling music from the group’s concerts back in 2016 and 2017.
While the pandemic has limited the music the singers have been able to share and create, Kwami says he’s confident there will be many more awards in the future.
You can read more about the Fisk Jubilee Singers’ renowned history, including their rumored role in Nashville’s “Music City” nickname, in WPLN’s Curious Nashville story here.