Jazz And Jazz Culture

1273 Words6 Pages
What is culture? What is African culture? What is Jazz music and where did it come from? How can one culture, in a sense, impact the musical landscape of the whole Western world and eventually assimilate into ‘pop’ culture? If we want to truly understand jazz and it’s concepts, we have to navigate through history and explore it’s roots. Simply put, jazz is African
American music, and the genre, as we know, formed in New Orleans. However, the origins of jazz started well before then, in Africa. The powerful impact that African culture has throughout the world is a topic that doesn’t get acknowledged as much as it should. It would not be an off the wall assumption to claim that all Americans have heard some type of music that has been
…show more content…
Music falls right into the arts and entertainment categories and Africa’s music, is and has always been one of the most treasurable modalities the continent has to offer (Bennett).
In the beginning, Africans possessed their own cultural identities such as musicians, farmers, and medicine men. With this, they also had the ability to sing, dance, and fabricate musical instruments that were indigenous to their native land. In a culture where percussion was dominant, it was used to create complex rhythms and as the basic pattern of self expression.
African music is deeply rooted in the typically polyrhythmic music of the ethnic groups of
Africa, specifically those in the Western, Sahelean, and Sub-Saharan regions. The African lineage of African American music is evident in some common elements: call and response, syncopation, percussion, improvisation, blue notes, the use of falsetto, and complex multi-part harmony. All of these characteristics, in some ways, can be found integrated into what we now know as jazz and the blues. Reflecting both the hardships and triumphs black Americans have experienced, their music also reflects national identity, impacting the lives of all Americans
(Stone).
Over time, many practices and traditions of African music were either forgotten or blended with other musical traditions. Nevertheless, African music continued to flow into the
New World as a result of the
Get Access