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The Birth of Blues, Jazz, and Rock

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The Birth of Blues, Jazz, and Rock
These are my rough unedited class notes representing general ideas and concepts for class lectures.
Please ignore the many sentence fragments.

The African-American culture of the southern plantation influenced the birth of the blues through the adaptation of their African musical heritage. Based upon a call and response structure, one slave worker would call or play a lead and the fellow workers would respond with the same phrase or an embellishment of that phrase. The music involved predictable repetitions and were designed to ease the boredom of working in the fields as well as using music to retain memories of their past. This was important to the slave who were accustomed to dancing and singing to the beat of African drumming which emphasized rhythm over harmony. Drums were outlawed by the plantation owners so slaves often substituted clapping or slapping their bodies to establish a rhythmic pulse. The black churches of the south used music to enhance their worship services. Even today, black church services traditionally extend many hours into the afternoon and sometimes resemble a community talent show with congregation members performing all sorts of energetic music.

During WWI many southern A-A's brought the blues to northern cities especially Chicago. The AA population grew from 40,000 in 1910 to 240,000 in 1930. Many left the plantations to flee from discrimination and to seek better paying jobs in the northern factories. From 1940-1950 220,000 southern African-Americans fled from the southern plantations to Chicago with nearly half coming from the Mississippi Delta region.

Muddy Waters (McKinley Morganfield)

Singing in church "I was a good Baptist and got all my moaning and trembling going on for me right out of church."

First guitar at 13 Sold last family horse for $15... Gave grandmother half and order a Stella guitar from Sears and Roebuck for $2.50

1943 moved to Chicago to make a start in the music business.

Wanted to

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