The Gospel Jubilators


This Piedmont area a cappella group has been singing together since 1972.  

“We all have a strong belief in God,” said Harry Leak in 2023. “Most of us come from different church backgrounds, but all of us have shared experiences. The traditional gospel music is just a continuation of what the group’s original purpose was. We try to maintain that style of music.” Harry was the longest serving member of the group until is unexpected passing on Thanksgiving morning 2023.

The Gospel Jubilators perform “I Went Down To The River To Pray” as a part of the opening night of PineCone’s 2024 Down Home Concert Season. This song was used in the movie “O Brother Where Art Thou.”

The group sings in the traditional jubilee style which dates back to the 19th century. Groups like the Fisk University Jubilee Singers brought the style to a broader audience.

The Gospel Jubilators opened PineCone’s 2024 Down Home Concert Season at the AJ Fletcher Theater. Chester Mayfield, Danny Massenburg, Don Adair, Fred Tyson and Fulton Waddell received a standing ovation from the sold out audience. “The guys enjoy what they do,” said bass singer Fred Tyson. “It’s been a rewarding experience.”

The Gospel Jubilators opened for The Dan Tyminski Band on January 12, 2024 as a part of PineCone’s Down Home Concert Season.

In the jubilee tradition the group often wears uniforms to set themselves apart. The music is sung in an equally formal style with tight arrangements that discourage improvisation.

The Gospel Jubilators received a standing ovation from the PineCone audience after their opening set on January 12, 2024.

The Gospel Jubilators sing in church settings and wherever they can be of service. “Thanks to PineCone we’ve been able to play all over and for a lot of people,” said Chester Mayfield from the Down Home Stage. “We’ve gone to Ireland, we’ve gone to Merlefest, sung with the North Carolina Symphony (and at the bluegrass festival) in Raleigh,” added Danny Massenberg.

The Gospel Jubliators performing on the Come Hear NC Stage at the 2023 IBMA Bluegrass Live powered by PNC Festival in Raleigh, NC.