Blues, Jazz and the early Civil Rights Movement Assignment

Blues, Jazz and the early Civil Rights Movement Assignment Words: 438

The blues were developed in the rural southern United States, toward the end of the 19th century, and found a wider audience in the 1 9405 as blacks migrated to urban areas. Jazz music has dozens of variations and also utilizes elements from other genres. Albeit the fact that it is less vocal than blues, it was extraordinarily emotional. The latter could be derived from its syncopation and the fact that it was free intently improvised (Henceforth).

Its distinct strong rhythms and disregard for conventional sound allowed for jazz to flourish into a genre that is known for possessing radically unique characteristics. Martin Luther King Jar. Was once quoted as saying that “Jazz speaks for life. The blues tell the story of life’s difficulties – and if you think for a moment, you realize that they take the hardest realities of life and put them into music, only to come out with some new hope or sense of triumph. This is triumphant music. A racially diverse audience listened to jazz and blues because it addressed a broad range of issues. At clubs, a proverbial melting pot of people would peacefully coexist given that they were there for the same reason – to listen to agreeable music. While jazz addressed a slew of issues, he blues often revolved around pressing issues of the time which could range anywhere from race to gender roles. Granted that music, during that time, Was a Caucasian male-dominated realm, it failed to dissuade women or those of African descent from contributing.

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Bessie Smith and Ma Rained were iconic in the sense that they sang about relatively controversial topics. Rained established the blues as women’s music, and Smith was the most successful blues singer of her time (Davis 92). Their songs collectively expressed independence and assertiveness, challenged ideas of gender-based inferiority, and covered epics such as domestic abuse, prostitution, work, and jail in such a way as to create a social history of African Americans.

Overall, the jazz and blues helped hasten the Civil Rights movement given that it assisted in publicizing the injustices of the time and encouraged people to act on them. Even though a great deal of effort was expended into keeping the clubs segregated, aficionados continued to attend regardless of the backlash they experienced on behalf of their peers and the governing forces. Jazz is highly regarded as being one of the few original American art forms. It as a medium that all shared and enjoyed, and that connective power reinforced the call for unity of blacks during the civil rights struggle.

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Blues, Jazz and the early Civil Rights Movement Assignment. (2018, Aug 23). Retrieved October 16, 2021, from