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Old 08-07-2013, 10:01 AM
 
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I am a black American southern native and my American family were descendants of slaves from Africa.

 
Old 08-07-2013, 10:54 AM
 
Location: San Diego, California Republic
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Deezus View Post
Are you talking about the musical roots of jazz or the etymology of the word jazz itself? I've heard the idea that the word "Jazz" is different spelling of a Irish/Gaelic word meaning heat that started to be used to describe the music towards the end of the ragtime era.

However, saying an academic tried to trace back the roots of jazz at this point makes it sounds like jazz was some motherless orphan left on a doorstep and someone did a DNA test years later. The musical roots of jazz are well known--there's thousands of books written on this subject. It was born in New Orleans--it's as much a Creole mix as gumbo. It was a mix in the post Civil War-era of the call and response chants and syncopated African rhythms of the ex-slaves preserved through Congo Square mixing with the wealthier Creole blacks trained in European classical and marching band music styles and influenced by music of the Caribbean(particularly Cuba). During the Jim Crow-era of segregation, the more Creoles were forced to mingle with the ex-slaves(and the many ex-slaves who moved into New Orleans from the rest of the South and brought the early blues styles). This is what led to the development of what was called ragtime music and would later evolve into what became early "Jazz".

The Irish came to New Orleans in large numbers in the decade right before the end of slavery and were for the most part poor migrant workers and not slave owners. There weren't a lot of Irish slave owners in the South--they were too poor and mostly migrated to Northeastern cities where they were about the same social class if not lower than free blacks. The Scotch-Irish had a lot influence in the styles of other parts of the South--mostly in Appalachia--though that's the roots of a different music style--that also was influenced by and influenced the blues and country music.
Almost all modern music genres originated in the US and just about all of those had a significant contribution from Black Americans who used African styles and rhythms together with European instrumentation. You have explained jazz quite well. Rock n Roll started in several places and was a fusion of the aforementioned elements. Hip-Hop and Disco started in New York. House/Techno started in Detroit. All of these genres and by extension the sub-genres that came after them owe their existence to the original blues and jazz born in the American south.
 
Old 08-07-2013, 10:57 AM
 
Location: Maryland
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Their matriarchal family structures are African.
 
Old 08-07-2013, 12:40 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gentoo View Post
Almost all modern music genres originated in the US and just about all of those had a significant contribution from Black Americans who used African styles and rhythms together with European instrumentation. You have explained jazz quite well. Rock n Roll started in several places and was a fusion of the aforementioned elements. Hip-Hop and Disco started in New York. House/Techno started in Detroit. All of these genres and by extension the sub-genres that came after them owe their existence to the original blues and jazz born in the American south.
Yes, and there's a lot of mixing of musical styles and cross-pollination... Funk music came later but it has even more African/Latin rhythms than earlier R'n'B or blues. A lot of Caribbean/Latin music has heavy African roots--and some of those influences have seeped into American music styles at various points in history. The famous Bo Diddley beat that influenced a lot of future rock music was similar to the Cuban son clave rhythm which is found as one the essential elements of West African music. It all goes back to how jazz music was influenced by the African roots that came through the Caribbean to New Orleans--though what jazz became itself would influence later Cuban music in terms of instrumentation and style and what would later become Salsa music when it was in New York being played by Puerto Rican immigrants.

The influences often go both ways--rock 'n roll came out of the jump blues and early R'N'B scene, but when Chuck Berry wrote Johnny Be Goode he was influenced by country music(and country music itself was influenced by both old folk music and the blues earlier on). Bluegrass is seen as a white music style, but it's at it's heart a later mix of Scotch-Irish folk music of the Appalachian region and the fast improvisation of jazz--played often with a banjo(an African instrument). Techno music was a mix of late 70s/early 80s funk like Parliament-Funkadelic with the pioneering electronic music experiments of Europeans like the German band Kraftwerk or Brian Eno or Giorgio Moroder.

Jamaican reggae was born of rocksteady and ska music--and ska was a Jamaican music style influenced by the New Orleans R'n'B of Fats Domino they could pick up on the radio. Jamaican reggae would evolve into dub and early dancehall and toasting styles--which Kool DJ Herc a Jamaican immigrant to the Bronx would take and transform into early hip-hop. And the funk/soul of James Brown would influence African music especially the Nigerian Fela Kuti who basically turned Afrobeat music into his own African take on funk.

Musical styles often don't have a clear family tree, they're often sort of ongoing give and take. There's a lot of African roots in American music styles that have blended with other styles and influences to create all these different genres over the years.

Last edited by Deezus; 08-07-2013 at 12:49 PM..
 
Old 08-07-2013, 01:32 PM
 
Location: San Diego, California Republic
16,431 posts, read 22,347,387 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Deezus View Post
Yes, and there's a lot of mixing of musical styles and cross-pollination... Funk music came later but it has even more African/Latin rhythms than earlier R'n'B or blues. A lot of Caribbean/Latin music has heavy African roots--and some of those influences have seeped into American music styles at various points in history. The famous Bo Diddley beat that influenced a lot of future rock music was similar to the Cuban son clave rhythm which is found as one the essential elements of West African music. It all goes back to how jazz music was influenced by the African roots that came through the Caribbean to New Orleans--though what jazz became itself would influence later Cuban music in terms of instrumentation and style and what would later become Salsa music when it was in New York being played by Puerto Rican immigrants.

The influences often go both ways--rock 'n roll came out of the jump blues and early R'N'B scene, but when Chuck Berry wrote Johnny Be Goode he was influenced by country music(and country music itself was influenced by both old folk music and the blues earlier on). Bluegrass is seen as a white music style, but it's at it's heart a later mix of Scotch-Irish folk music of the Appalachian region and the fast improvisation of jazz--played often with a banjo(an African instrument). Techno music was a mix of late 70s/early 80s funk like Parliament-Funkadelic with the pioneering electronic music experiments of Europeans like the German band Kraftwerk or Brian Eno or Giorgio Moroder.

Jamaican reggae was born of rocksteady and ska music--and ska was a Jamaican music style influenced by the New Orleans R'n'B of Fats Domino they could pick up on the radio. Jamaican reggae would evolve into dub and early dancehall and toasting styles--which Kool DJ Herc a Jamaican immigrant to the Bronx would take and transform into early hip-hop. And the funk/soul of James Brown would influence African music especially the Nigerian Fela Kuti who basically turned Afrobeat music into his own African take on funk.

Musical styles often don't have a clear family tree, they're often sort of ongoing give and take. There's a lot of African roots in American music styles that have blended with other styles and influences to create all these different genres over the years.
Another good explanation. Eurodance can be explained like this too. Having evolved from a fusion of Disco and Techno with elements of Hip-Hop. Then came the Caribbean influenced, by way of the UK, ragga rhymes. Many Jamaican communities in the UK have maintained the Patwa dialects and have incorporated them into dance music. Ice MC's stuff from the early 90's is a good example of this.
 
Old 08-07-2013, 02:44 PM
 
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What defines African American music is the approach to certain forms of music. The way African American musicians played marching band music became Jazz. Classical music could also be "Jazzed” up. Black classical and traditionally trained band leaders would hire an instrumentalist who could play "hot." These musicians could not read music but would improvise during the performance. This approach to music is West African. Eventually, in smaller ensembles all the instrumentalist began simultaneously improvising popular hits of the day. Early jazz, hot jazz and Dixie land were basically the same thing.
Blues is the same thing but with vocal music. Blues is quite simply the way African Americans interpreted melody. The most prominent hold over from Africa is the use of a chord structure that is not dependant on Major, Minor and Dominate chords and this is a departure which is a fundamental part of western music.
 
Old 08-08-2013, 09:30 PM
 
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Americans who consider themselves "African American" identify with what Jesse Jackson put on us! Most have no idea why African is in front of our American national name. Proud American here!!!! Anyway, we who are "conscious" identify with the continent and not any particular country or ethnic group. Hope this Helps.
 
Old 08-08-2013, 09:32 PM
 
47 posts, read 73,952 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Motion View Post
Black-Americans aren't generally known to have many direct African cultural influences like those found in Haiti,Brazil or Cuba. But didn't some degree of African influence shape the way that black-Americans do and approach certain things? Like for example blacks in America have been well known for being good dancers and innovative with music. Where does that come from? Black Americans have their own way of speaking english called "black english" by some. What influenced that?

Could Jazz music had been developed without some amount of African sensibilities? In order for James Brown to create the music he created wouldn't that have also required that it come from someone of African descent? A song like Flashlight by Parliament could have only come from African descendant musicians. Dance styles like Locking and popping(popular in the 70's-80's)could only have been by created by African descendants also.

Basically what I'm getting at is that it's true that Black-Americans don't have the more obvious African cultural influences found in a Cuba or Haiti but much of what we do in music,dance,language,worship and food does show some African sensibilities if you look a little deeper at things.
Whats it to you? Why are Africans all over the world instead of in their African countries? Ask this question to our faces.
 
Old 08-08-2013, 09:53 PM
 
Location: Vineland, NJ
8,483 posts, read 10,460,458 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Obsidian Princess View Post
Americans who consider themselves "African American" identify with what Jesse Jackson put on us! Most have no idea why African is in front of our American national name. Proud American here!!!! Anyway, we who are "conscious" identify with the continent and not any particular country or ethnic group. Hope this Helps.
There is nothing wrong with the term African American. It addresses ancestral origin and has nothing to do with cultural ties to the continent of Africa. Sorry no conspiracy here.
 
Old 08-08-2013, 10:16 PM
 
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Whats european american about me? European language, european cuisine, european holidays, european education. What african about africans? Just ancestry but not culture.
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