Jazz Influence On American Culture

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In life, there are few things as organic as jazz music. With its raw sound and scrappy roots, one cannot help but feel life head-on whilst witnessing players produce such a sound right before their eyes. Its origins and arch are a product of the United States’ national culture and identity. Jazz exists not only as a deeply rooted form of art but as a cultural marker, particularly during its commercial peak in the first half of the 20th century. Its impact transcends borders, and it is one of the most beloved musical genres worldwide. The history, popularity and influence of jazz on human culture make it the seminal American art form. The origins of jazz music are central to its identity and its importance in the American story. Firstly, ragtime…show more content…
Initially, bebop jazz was characterized by significantly more complex chord progressions and melodies with a strong focus on the rhythm section. Although the irregular and unpredictable lengths of solos and increased sophistication made the music less suitable for dancing, it was nonetheless entertaining. Jazz had gained higher respect from a widestream audience, as it was no longer just dance music. Bebop lasted well into the 1950s, and the next stylistic revolution came during the revolutionary decade of the 1960s: fusion. Jazz fusion came into fruition when musicians combined aspects of jazz harmony and improvisation with styles such as funk, rock, rhythm and blues, and Latin jazz. It was during this time that many jazz musicians began to experiment with electric instruments and amplified sound as well as electronic effects and synthesizers. These instruments were common in other forms of popular music yet unprecedented in jazz. Many of the developments during the late 1960s and early 1970s have since become established elements of jazz fusion musical practice, perhaps the longest lasting stylistic showcase of jazz music due to its flexibility as a term. The development of American jazz is staggering and a fascinating study, but the music’s influence also transcends borders. On the tropical beaches of Rio de Janeiro in the late 1950s, students, artists and musicians came together to create a new sound called Bossa Nova. It was the result of…show more content…
In the time WW1, a wild new popular culture emerged in the United States. In part, it was a hedonistic and extravagant reaction to the hardship and austerity experienced during the war. Some have referred to it as the Roaring Twenties, while others have called it the Jazz Age. When one speaks of the Jazz Age, what comes to mind is a decade of partying, of the Charleston and jazz bands, of female flappers and loose morals, of bathtub gin and speakeasies, all combined and intertwined into a celebration of American technology and ingenuity that, over the course of a decade, provided average U.S. families the materialistic conveniences of automobiles and modern appliances. A truly remarkable chapter of American history, Jazz was the soundtrack to it and came to embody the attitude of the burgeoning counterculture. One of the defining aspects of the Jazz Age was the Harlem Renaissance, a cultural explosion that took place in Harlem, New York. It was a movement wherein African-American writers, musicians, and intellectuals came together to celebrate their culture and create brilliant works of art that not only transformed black culture, but American culture at large. Jazz, being a predominantly black art form, played no small role. Composer William Grant Still was one of the most important musicians of the Harlem Renaissance movement. The values introduced by the

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