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A history of jazz

Related music styles: acid jazz - bebop - black music - cool jazz - free jazz - jazz fusion - jazz funk - Jamaican jazz - kozmigroov - nu jazz - ragtime - space jazz - swing

Despite the 1950s Western canonization of jazz, its roots - much like disco in the 1970s and house music in the 1980s - lie in hedonistic drug-fueled dance music of the early 20th century. Nazi Germany condemned jazz as "degenerate music". [May 2006]

Related: Ada 'Bricktop' Smith - early discotheque music - hipsters - jazz standards - jazz age - New Orleans

Labels: Strata East Records

Jazzy artists: Brian Auger - Roy Ayers - Jorge Ben - Donald Byrd - Terry Callier - Joe Claussell - Ornette Coleman - Stanley Cowell - Carl Craig - Miles Davis - Manu Dibango - Serge Gainsbourg - Rudy Van Gelder - Herbie Hancock - Fela Kuti - Bill Laswell - Jackie Mittoo - Milton Nascimiento - Ernest Ranglin - Minnie Riperton - Pharoah Sanders - Sun Ra - Lonnie Liston Smith - Leon Thomas

Era: 1920s - 1930s - 1940s - 1950s - 1960s - 1970s - 1980s - 1990s - 2000s

Poster for exhibition "Entartete Musik", Duesseldorf, 1938 Entartete Musik

Unidentified Studio One cover.


Jazz, a musical form that grew out of a cross-fertilization of folk blues, ragtime, and European music, particularly band music, has been called the first art form to develop in the United States of America.

Jazz is an original American musical art form originating around the early 1920s in New Orleans, rooted in Western music technique and theory, and is marked by the profound cultural contributions of African Americans. It is characterized by blue notes, syncopation, swing, call and response, polyrhythms, and improvisation. Jazz has been described as "America's Classical Music", and started in saloons throughout the nation. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jazz

Charlie Parker: intellectual, rather than just a popular entertainer

Charlie Parker also became an icon for the Beat generation, and was a pivotal figure in the evolving conception of the jazz musician as an uncompromising artist and intellectual, rather than just a popular entertainer. At various times, Parker fused jazz with other musical styles, from classical (seeking to study with Edgard Varese and Stefan Wolpe). --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charlie_Parker [May 2006]


  • http://be-jazz.blogspot.com


  • A Night in Tunisia (1960) - Art Blakey [Amazon.com]
    It was not until listening to the title track of this recording (as well as John Coltrane's "Live at Birdland" which featured Sir Elvin Jones) that I understood that the creation of spatial polyrhythmic dimensions with percussion did not begin with Ginger Baker (or any other rock drummer) but rather with Jones and Art Blakey. Before this I assumed that most jazz drummers were simply there to mark time for the brass section. But drummers like Blakey, Jones, and even Max Roach were laying the foundations of what people would later call "hard rock". In the case of Blakey, the term given was "hard bop", but labels aside his drumming on this recording shows how a drummer can have voice without taking away from melody and rhythm. - Todd Ebert for amazon.com

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