Our Milestones and Achievements
40+ Years and We’re Still Shouting
More than 40 years ago, the McIntosh County Shouters were formed to bring the ring shout to the public. Over the years, we’ve shared the tradition with thousands of people in numerous school events, community festivals, and prestigious cultural institutions. We have received many honors and recognitions along the way. Here are just a few highlights from the McIntosh County Shouters timeline.
- The McIntosh County Shouters are formed. After keeping the ring shout tradition unbroken, the descendants of London and Amie Jenkins, led by Mr. Lawrence McIver (Boss Songster) and Mr. Benjamin Reed (Stick Man), decide to form an official group to share the culture and tradition outside of their Mt. Calvary Baptist Church community.
- Our first appearance was at a regional heritage festival.
- The Mclntosh County Shouters: Slave Shout Songs from the Coast of Georgia. The first album of its kind was recorded by Moses Asche and produced and annotated by Art Rosenbaum, professor emeritus at the University of Georgia. It was reissued in 2006 by Smithsonian Folkways Recordings.
- Down Yonder: A documentary about the Mclntosh County Shouters of the Bolden/Briar Patch Community, produced by Art Rosenbaum and aired on Georgia Public Broadcasting.
- National Heritage Fellowship, National Endowment for the Arts: The nation’s highest honor for traditional arts.
- Shout Because You’re Free: It is a book by Art Rosenbaum, professor emeritus at the University of Georgia, which documents the history of the Gullah-Geechee ring shout and the McIntosh County Shouters. In this book, Art Rosenbaum wrote that the “McIntosh County Shouters were credited with preserving the ring shout in North America.
Featured in HBO’s “Untamed Memories,” a documentary about flavoring, Directed by Donna Brown Guillaume.”
- Master Artists: The McIntosh County Shouters were honored as Master Artists in New York City by the National Endowment for the Arts.
- World Music Festival (New York City): The McIntosh County Shouters join other award-winning performers from across the globe for this celebration of cultural heritage.
- The Grammy Awards: “The Art of Field Recording,” produced by Art Rosenbaum and featuring the McIntosh County Shouters, won in the Best Historical Album category.
- Library of Congress Homegrown Concert Series: The McIntosh County Shouters were selected to appear at the Library of Congress and the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.
- Georgia Governor’s Award in the Arts and Humanities: The McIntosh County Shouters were honored for their exemplary work in the humanities and for serving as models for others across the state.
- The NAACP Founder’s Day Award: In honor of the McIntosh County Shouters for preserving and sharing the tradition of the ring shout.
- Opening of Savannah College of Art and Design Museum.
- The Pin Point Museum (Savannah, GA): Honoring Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas.
- Grand opening of Tubman African American Museum (Macon, GA).
- National Museum of African American Heritage and Culture (Washington, D.C.): The McIntosh County Shouters were invited to perform for the grand opening weekend of Freedom Sounds: A Community Celebration.
- Columbus Museum: Special performance of Spirituals and Shout Songs from the Georgia Coast, the second album released by Smithsonian Folkway Recordings.
- Museum of African American History (Washington, D.C): Archive Interview.
- 2017 Travel Channel Documentary: Featuring the McIntosh County Shouters for air in Europe.
- University of Colorado Boulder: Special NAACP performance.
- Sapelo: An international award-winning Swiss film detailing the last remaining community of Saltwater Geechee people on Sapelo Island.
The Black Church: This is Our Story, This is Our Song. Some of the McIntosh County Shouters were on the soundtrack of the PBS documentary series.
Freedom’s Path: This historical film based on the Civil War and the Underground Railroad includes scenes of the McIntosh County Shouters performing the ring shout. The group provided most of the soundtrack for this film.”
Other Special Performances
Music Explorers Program: The McIntosh County Shouters have shared the ring shout with 15,000 schoolchildren in partnership with the Savannah Music Festival and Carnegie Hall (2014, 2017, 2018, and 2022).
Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts (D.C. area)
- Festival International de Louisiane (Lafayette, LA): The McIntosh County Shouters shared the Gullah-Geechee culture and ring shout at this annual music and arts festival celebrating music and arts heritage.