Someone said the 60’s really took place in the 70’s and in folk music one could make a case for this. Between 1970 and 1980 folk music in Canada went through an unparalleled growth spurt. Not only did an entire new generation of songwriters emerge, but entire new genres began to form; Celtic folk rock from Newfoundland (Figgy Duff); the first world music ensemble combining Chilean and Greek refugees in Toronto (Companeros); the first unabashedly feminist singer songwriter (Rita MacNeil); West Coast Folk (Pied Pumkin and Flying Mountain); a handful of aboriginal singer-songwriters including Willie Dunn, Alanis Obomsawin, Shingoose, Winston Wuttunnee, and Guyanese, Arawak singer, David Campbell found an audience at folk festivals and the concerts they spawned. Stringband created a repertoire combining traditional music, songs by group members, and those by other new writers, pioneered extensive national touring and were among the first to create their own record company, shattering the hold of the “majors” over folk music. Dave Essig, Stan Rogers, Roy Forbes, David Wiffen, Ferron, Willie P. Bennett, Connie Kaldor; a whole lexicon of names that would become important to folk music in the next decades were first heard in this period. Independent recordings and radio in both campus/community form and, more than ever, the CBC, took the music across the country.
Your ignorance is showing.
"Folk masses" were started by the Catholic and other churches during the late 60s and early 70s.
Prior to that the classic 'folk music' was the music of people like the Weavers, Woody Gutherie, and many many more. Their music was political, topical, and derived from yes, old spirituals, English folk tunes, African influences (see Huddie Leadbetter for deatils) and a WIDE variety of sources.
There are many 'branches' to folk music, and many influences from many cultures. Bluegrass, country, and even pop music is derived from the chord changes and musical structure of 'folk' music, which has been around since men started socializing and communicating