The Negative Impacts Of Jazz And The Jazz Era

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Music has always been a very important cultural aspect of many communities. America has important roots in music as well. Since the late 1800s a new style of music took over the country. In the early 1900s, the music was given a name, Jazz. Jazz was a uniquely American genre of music that developed from many other styles of sound, and is still changing today. The music developed from African slaves as well as European Settlers. Jazz was different from other styles because the main aspect of the music was improvisation. Similar to how old stories were passed down orally before writing was common, Jazz was rarely written down and songs were never played the same. Although the style could have any instrumentation, which made the music…show more content…
After a victory, the United States needed cheerful music to dance to and celebrate with. Again after World War Two Jazz music was used again to boost moral of the country. “The end of the war and the close of the big band era caused the orchestra to struggle with many personnel changes, but Ellington's royalty money kept the band on the road and by the early 1950s the band was back in top form.”(Blues and Jazz) The Great Depression had negative impacts to jazz, similar to the way that Jim Crow laws affected Jazz. The Great Depression caused African Americans to be put out of work even more. “While whites in the jazz music industry got rich, black musicians did not reap equal benefits. The industry caused a great deal of exploitation and discrimination by whites against blacks”(Phillips). Ellington was so successful as a African American musician because he catered to the white style of Jazz music. Ellington combined “smooth dance music with impulsive improvisation, creating a polished, yet popular sound”(American Jazz Culture in the 1920s) that would appeal to the large white…show more content…
Jazz music had an impact on the social movements that followed its popularity. Jazz music brought about scandalous dancing and dressing, yet ultimately was an important factor to the women’s liberation. Speakeasies drew “young audiences from all social classes, attracted to both the music and the increasingly suggestive jazz dances. Both the mixing of the races and the widespread belief that jazz incites sexual activity causes [the older generation to criticize the movement]”(Music and Dance). In a similar way, Jazz was also the music of the civil rights movement. Jazz was supposed to be music of unity that would unite classes, genders, and races, and is often portrayed that way in history. It was a “great social leveler and unifier,[and] melded black and white citizens for love of fast music aided by help of radio, social dance music, one of first opportunities for public integration”(Jazz). However Black musicians were out of jobs more often than white bands. That is why Duke Ellington toured Europe, because he was more respected over there. When Ellington came back from Europe after the period of the Jim Crow Laws he became more accepted and people realized what they missed when he was in
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