Religious » Gospel
Gospel essentially breaks down into three separate categories. For many listeners, the word "gospel" conjures the sound of large African-American Southern gospel choirs, singing joyous songs of celebration. These grew out of traditional spirituals and would later evolve into close-knit, small combos that were the blueprint for doo-wop groups. Another style of gospel was country gospel, which sounded like traditional country with lyrics about God. These two forms -- along with blues gospel, which was never quite as widespread as country gospel -- provided part of the foundation of contemporary gospel and CCM (Contemporary Christian Music), which came into existence in the late '70s. The other part of CCM was soft rock and mainstream pop, which provided the sound of the genre. Throughout the '80s and '90s, CCM was the most popular style of gospel, since it sounded like mainstream pop, only with religious lyrics.