Jazz Influences on the 20th Century

Topics: Jazz, New Orleans, Louis Armstrong Pages: 3 (1158 words) Published: April 10, 2011
Jazz Influence on the 20th Century
Jazz is considered one of the most influential types of music in American history. Some of the greatest artists in the world have contributed to the success jazz has had not only on American history, but throughout the world. Jazz music has come to serve as the base of many music styles in the United States. This paper will explain the history of jazz, where it all came from, and the effect it has had on the American culture in the 20th century. To start off, Meltingpot.fortuecity.com states that in the 1930’s and 1940’s jazz was at its peak. Most of the jazz scene started in New Orleans. Other major cities throughout the Midwest, such as Memphis, St. Louis, and Chicago have their own unique style of jazz. While the city of New Orleans was founded in 1719 by the French, it was run by Spain for years. France took back control of the land in 1803, and immediately sold the land to the Americans as part of the Louisiana Purchase. The city of New Orleans brought a new perspective on life with the love of good food, wine, dancing, and most of all, music. The city of New Orleans was far from any colony of the U.S. with their old world culture and music. The next thing, stated in Nps.gov, is that the cultural background of New Orleans played a big part in the beginning of jazz, because it carried a whole new sound than what people were not used to from previous times. The Europeans were not the only race that was heading to New Orleans, for it was mostly consisting of slaves from West Africa. Around 1721 West Africans totaled of 30% of the population and by the end of the 1700’s, people of different African descent, both free and enslaved, made up more than half the city population. Along with that, many arrived via the Caribbean and brought with them West Indian cultural traditions. The influence of black Americans, who dealt with slavery, brought the elements of the blues, spirituals, and rural dances to New...
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