The Soul Stirrers

  • Year:
  • Inducted by:
    Al Green
  • Category:
    Early Influences


The trailblazing vocal group that set the tone for gospel music.

The Soul Stirrers took gospel from its jubilant style to a more rhythmic, emotional incarnation, providing the blueprint for doo-wop and R&B in the process.



Hall of Fame Essay


Dan Nooger

Had The Soul Stirrers done nothing more than launch the career of Sam Cooke, they would have more than earned their place in rock & roll history. 

But for nearly half a century the Soul Stirrers set the pace for both gospel and pop vocal groups with their blend of full, mellow harmonies and sexy, crooning leads delivered by a magnificent succession of singers. 

Cooke's replacement, Johnnie Taylor, went on to Top Ten pop and R&B success, and the group’s original lead singer, R.H. Harris, “simply created the entire gospel quartet tradition,” as Tony Heilbut wrote in The Gospel  Sound.

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony Program 1989
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The Soul Stirrers - Quote Image
thank you for the people that made some of the greatest music that ever was
Al Green



Photography: Kevin Mazur, WireImage