Although gospel music has its roots firmly in African-American Christianity and the struggle for emancipation and equal rights, over the last few decades its appeal has spread all over the world and the genre has entered the mainstream of music. This festival began in 1999 with a successful inaugural meeting, and the Gospel Workshop hasn't looked back since. Along the way it inspired many to form new bands and groups, changing its name in 2003 to Gospel Music Week. In 2006, the title was changed again to 7xGospel Festival, to reflect the diverse nature of the events which include concerts, street performances, and an array of workshops—including ones dedicated to kids, seniors, new moms, and men. On offer are "drumcappella" workshops, combining drum and vocal gospel elements, as well as workshops featuring choreography mixed with ASL (sign language).