Investigation into jazz Essay

This essay has a total of 821 words and 5 pages.

investigation into jazz

Written investigation into the contexts and musical influences on the jazz style.


Summary of HND seminar on History of Jazz.


On the 10th March, we were given a seminar by the HND students on ‘The Development of
Jazz Music and Dance. My aim in this written investigation is to summarise the information
given to me.


Development through African music

The earliest form of Jazz, began in African music. While most West African culture was
erased when people were transported into slavery, some core possession and spirit based
beliefs remained. People began to develop rhythms by using polyrhythmic drums, dance and
clapping. This was carried from the work place to the Christian Church House. Church began
to become more of a music lesson, than a spiritual, calm place to pray. This was the
earliest sign of ‘Gospel' churches. The rhythms developed here became known by Western
listeners as syncopation.


Development of the Blues.

Blues lyrics are simple rhyming couplets. The first line is repeated followed by a second
to complete the three lines of poetry. The story is always about a subject upon which the
performer has strong feelings.

This is the example we were given:

‘while you're livin' in your mansion - You don't know what hard times mean
while you're livin' in your mansion - you don't know what hard times mean
Poor workin' man's wife is stravin' - your wife is livin' is like a queen.'

We were also given another example which was Natural Blues by Moby.

Merging of cultures.

By the end of the civil was in 1865, the abolition of slavery meant that many black
musicians earned their living by playing music. The musicians would play European tunes
adding their own rhythms and melodies. Tunes were therefore ‘jazzed' or ‘ragged'. The
merging of black and white music traditions began the birth of jazz.

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