Music in the 1900’s
Stephen Mensah Period 6 The topic I will be writing about is Music in the 1900s starting from the beginning and explaining how and why new genre’s emerged from the old ones, to result in the music we know today. My research will be derived of these following books: Letters to a Young Jazz Musician, The ballad of book of john Jacob Niles, and I Hear America Singing. Notes and bibliography Website 1: Enjoy the music. com/history (notes A. ) As the 1900’s began, the variety of music genre began to grow exponentially it seems.
Ragtime, big band, jazz, folk, blues, crooning, scat, country/western, funk, be bop, rock, southern rock, disco, punk, break dance, hip-hop, techno, acid jazz, progressive, alternative, house music and many other types and variables were formed. Rock and country/western spawned southern rock. Progressive and jazz combined to form acid jazz. After disco came break dancing which then followed with hip-hop, techno and house music. So as the instruments and supporting technology changed, the way we expressed ourselves with music also seems to have changed. Website 2: www. ohn-meekings. co. uk/timeline. html Timeline of the 1900s: The turn of the century saw four distinctive musical styles – Church Music, Country Blues, Ragtime and Anglo-American Folk – unwittingly join forces to create the musical force we refer to collectively as The Blues. 1900 COUNTRY BLUES, the Blues was a living music in the countryside of the southern states. It was this pure music which expressed the hopes and fears of an oppressed race. RAGTIME, a commercial black music, associated with popular dances such as the ‘Catwalk’. Joplin was the principal exponent.
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ANGLO-AMERICAN FOLK, often featuring fiddles and banjos, Folk was to have a great influence on all forms of music. 1910 URBAN BLUES (Later R&B) William Christopher Handy (1876 – 1958) was a professionally trained musician who adapted country blues to the urban environment. Two great female singers then created the so-called ‘Classic Blues’ in this style during the 1920’s. 1920 BLACK CHURCH MUSIC, religion was one of the great solaces of the oppressed blacks of the US, and a particular form of church singing known as ‘Spirituals’ became world renowned, especially when taken up by the great Paul Robeson.
JAZZ, a recognisable style, jazz grew out of professional Urban Blues and the dance rhythms of Ragtime with artist like Jelly Roll Morton, King Oliver and Louis Armstrong. BOOGIE WOOGIE, the distinctive stomping sound of Boogie-Woogie with its strong, rhythmic piano developed from a combination of Ragtime, Urban Blues and Jazz as play by Albert Ammons and Meade Lux Lewis. JUG BANDS, a kind of simplified jazz on cheap instruments. Jug band music grew directly out of Urban Blues with bands like Will Shade’s Memphis Jug Band and Earl McDonald’s Dixieland Jug Blowers. 930 GOSPEL, a new music taken up by singers reared in the Spiritual tradition. Gospel has influenced all subsequent Black music as sung by Mahalla Jackson and Sister Rosetta Tharpe. JUMP MUSIC, a small-group variant on the big-band Swing style performed by Louis Jordan (1908 – 1975). 1940 WEST COAST BLUES, Aaron Thibeaux Walker (1910 – 1975). ( T-Bone Walker ) began recording in California under his own name, using electric (rather than acoustic) guitar. He used guitar with jazz horns to create a Blues style that has lasted to this day.
The other major player who developed from West Coast Blues was the legendary B. B. King. ( More about BB later ). BLUEGRASS, in the mid 1940’s Bill Monroe used Blues inflections and exciting rhythms to create a sound that became an important strand of Country music from then on, other players at time were Lester Flatt and Earl Scruggs. CHICAGO and DETRIOT, while T-Bone Walker was recording on the West Coast, musicians in the industrial cities of the Midwest were developing their own style – one that owed more to a direct link with Urban Blues and less to Jazz.
Their Electric Blues also entered the mainstream and became the core of Rock during the 1960’s. The key men were McKinley Morganfield (1915 – 1983). ( Muddy Waters ) and John Lee Hooker born in 1917. 1950 COUNTRY and WESTERN, ( Honky Tonk ) developed from a fusion of Blues and white country music as played by Ernest Tubb and Hank Williams. DOO-WOP, church harmony singing traditions joined Blues to form the small group, close harmony style known as Doo-Wop performed by The Platters, The Coasters and The Drifters. ROCK ‘N’ ROLL, in the mid 1950’s Jump music joined with R & B to create a new hybrid.
The breakthrough came with Bill Haley, but its greatest exponent was the one and only Elvis Presley who merged Blues, Country (Rockabilly) with Black Rock ‘n’ Roll along with other including Fats Domino, Chuck Berry and Little Richard. CAJUN, Nathan Abshire and Doug Kershaw mingled the folk tradition of Louisiana with the black Blues of the South, the result was Cajun. 1960 SOUL, West Coast Blues, Jazz saxophones and the anguish of Gospel came together to create Soul, through greats like Ray Charles, Aretha Franklin and Otis Redding.
FOLK and PROTEST, folk musicians Bob Dylan, Pete Seeger and Joan Baez, expressing political discontent. BRITISH BEAT, in 1963, Britain was overtaken by a musical revolution as young musicians took up the legacy of Rock ‘n’ Roll and Pop with groups like The Kinks, The Hollies, Status Quo and The Beatles. MOTOWN, the Motown organisation in Detroit mixed Doo-Wop with R & B to assemble one of the great rosters of black artist, Diana Ross and the Supremes, The Four Tops and Smokey Robinson and the Miracles to name but three.
BRITISH BLUES, some British musicians wanted to get closer to R & B and Country Blues originals and you get Alexis Korner, The Rolling Stones, John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers. (which included Eric Clapton) and The Yardbirds (which included Eric Clapton). SKA and BLUEBEAT, also in the 1960’s, calypso rhythm was overlaid with Jazz horns and R & B guitars to create Ska and Bluebeat performed by Toots and the Maytals, The Skatelites and Desmond Dekkar.
SINGER-SONGWRITERS, still in the 1960’s you had the like of Leonard Cohen, Joni Mitchell and Carole King, poets singer-songwriters used Blues and Folk music to express wide-ranging ideas. ROCK MUSIC, around 1965, British Beat and British Blues merged to form ‘Rock’ – the basis of popular music to the present day, at the time Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin and Cream (which included Eric Clapton – him again) and many, many others. 1970 HARD ROCK, some musicians were now developing a simpler, rhythmic style, based around guitar solos, that often owed much to the guitar playing of bluesmen such as Freddie and Albert King.
Led Zepplin, Deep Purple and Ten Years After. PROGRESSIVE ROCK, a tendency in the mid 1960’s early 1970’s, usually combining Jazz with Rock and often employing unusual time signatures from King Crimson, Henry Cow and the mad Frank Zappa. SUPER-GROUPS, other skillful Progressive Rock originals like Pink Floyd, Yes and Genesis producing music that has stood the test of time. FUNK, away from basic Motown styling, R & B, Soul and Jazz style Jazz and Rock joined together to create the powerful body music of Funk from Earth, Wind and Fire and Kool and the Gang.
REGGAE, the anarchic sound of Ska became the heavier thud of Reggae, Bob Marlay. EUROPOP, european group ABBA clean up Rock models to create its own music. PUNK, the revolt was a reaction against the skilled Supergroups of the 1970’s and produced The Clash and The Sex Pistols. BLACK SUPER-STARS, Funk and Pop spawned three superstars Michael Jackson, Prince and Tina Turner who linked aggressive dance music with high-production values. DISCO, the rhythms of Funk were simplified by K.
C. and the Sunshine Band and Donna Summer for the dance floor. 1980 TWO-TONE, Uk New Wave groups Madness and The Specials revived Ska and Reggae, to create a new black-and-white fusion. HEAVY METAL, Hard Rock and Electric Blues is fused by Motorhead, Def Leppard and Guns ‘N’ Roses to become Heavy Metal NEW WAVE, took from the best of Punk and then used elements lifted from black music as performed by Eurythmics, Elvis Costello and Police. 1990
SUPER-SUPER-GROUP, in 1997 Jimmy Rogers a guitarist with Muddy Waters in the early days formed “The Jimmy Rogers All Stars” and made a CD called ‘Blues Blues Blues’ which was to be two CD’s but he died in December 1997 before both could be finished, his all stars included:- Eric Clapton, Lowell Fulson, Jeff Healey, Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Taj Mahal, Jimmy Page, Robert Plant and Stephen Stills. A great hour of blues. RAP, HIP-HOP, HOUSE, the frenetic music of Funk was modified by a new generation of black musicians like M C Hammer, Grandmaster Flash and Public Enemy and many others who used technology in a radically new way.
GRUNGE, finds its roots in R & B played by Nirvana. MODERN POP, Disco meets black Funk to become Modern Pop. The Blues story shows no sign of ending. The 1990’s have seen a resurrection of the careers of key Blues men like John Lee Hooker, Buddy Guy and B. B. King. The Blues is big business and there’s no sign of the bubble bursting yet. Pop will continue to feed into all other forms of music, but her love affair with the Blues shows every sign of carrying on – well into the 21st century. Back when I was writing about the 1940’s, I said more about B. B.
King, if you remember the More Details on the Blues Page, at the beginning I refer to BB and later John Mayall, this is the reason :- One of the hardest working men in the music business, the 77 year old guitarist B. B. King signed his first record deal in 1950. He was one of the inspirations for British bands involved in the UK’s growing blues scene in the sixties, played Manchester’s Free Trade Hall in April 1969. In 1987, B. B. was inducted into the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame in New York. Shortly afterwards, he was presented with a lifetime achievement award at the 30th annual Grammy ceremony.