Last Words

Dr. Johnson, I really thought I knew what to expect from this class. I also thought with the musical experience I have been exposed to throughout my life, I would know a lot. I was wrong, on both accounts. I appreciate getting to go back in time, to my grandparents time, and even before that, […]

Negro Spirituals: The Genesis of Sacred Music

A post by Amariah Sledge and Kennedy Brooks Origin of the Genre: The Negro Spiritual was birthed from the Christian beliefs adopted by African Americans in the 18th and 19th century. When Africans were first brought to North America, the Christianity they saw was formatted to justify slavery. However during the first Great Awakening, Christianity […]

Folk Music: Humble Beginnings

A post by Amariah Sledge and Kennedy Brooks Origin of the Genre: Before their arrival in America, music was somehow integrated into everyday happenings for Africans. Often times this music was accompanied by dancing while working or during a celebration. This occurrence persisted even as Africans were brought to North America and Caribbean islands. The […]

The Impact of Black Musical Theater

  How did the minstrel develop? Describe its form, major characters, and musical content. White minstrel teams in the 1840s mirrored the habits and customs of southern slaves or urban blacks.  A minstrel show was and became a full- length entertainment segment, featuring performers in blackface that performed songs, dances, and comic skits based on […]

Chicago & Earth, Wind and Fire

  Chicago & Earth, Wind and Fire Earth, Wind & Fire (EWF) is an American band that has spanned the musical genres. They were one of the most successful bands of 1970s. The band was founded in Chicago by Maurice White in 1970. On December 12th, 2004, in Los Angeles, California, Earth Wind and Fire, […]

African American Music 1960-1990

In the 1940’s and 1970’s, a new form of Black dance music began. This newfound music comprised of elements of jazz, blues, gospel music, and pop. This became known as “rhythm and blues”, or R&B for short. R&B was originally used as a tool for modifying and minimizing African American music. As African American communities […]

Evolution of Hip-Hop

Hip-Hop originated in the United States, in the predominantly Black community that is known as the South Bronx. The genre emerged around the 1970s and has remained a popular music genre in today’s modern world. Hip-Hop music often consists of four elements; deejaying, rapping, graffiti, and B-Boy dancing. A lot people fail to realize how […]

Jazzin’ it Up

Origin: The jazz genre originated in New Orleans. Once Jim Crow laws were enforced, Creoles, who were classically trained, showcased their talents to African Americans which led to the creation of jazz music. It is known as the pinnacle of African American music in the 20th century. Characteristics: Jazz music consisted of blues and ragtime […]

A New Classic

Origin: Classical music originated in Europe during the mid 1700s. This period was considered to be known as the “classical period.” Although, the United States did not introduce classical music until the 19th century. This happened because there was an uprise in productions of classical music and also composers. Even though very little African Americans […]

The Commodification of Blues

Blues music was popular among former slaves living in Mississippi. Once the Great Migration happened, full of African American workers, blues music spread across not only the south, but the rest of the United States. The blues had a theme in the music that was able to express the African American struggle. Many enslaved African […]

It’s About That (Rag)time!

Origin Ragtime was developed at the end of the nineteenth century into the twentieth century between 1890-1917. Originally, ragtime was uniformly defined as having African American roots. It was first seen in African American communities in the United States, most likely in the midwest and southern areas. Ragtime was played by African American musicians in […]

A Modern and New Period in Music

By Kennedy Brooks Jubilee Quartets originated in the mid 1800s, where most started in churches and barbershops. The first two decades of the twentieth century was the form of the Jubilee Quartets. In 1905, the Fisk Jubilee quartet became popular and was the model for African American jubilee quartets in the south. These early gospel-sounding […]

IME- Kennedy Brooks

Hi, my name is Kennedy Brooks. I am a first-year comparative women’s studies major from Cleveland, Ohio. This semester I am working on staying positive and being open-minded to learning new things as well as continuing to grow mentally, physically and spiritually. I hope to learn more about music, as I have taken many music […]