Funk By: Nyla Griffith Inspired by R&B and jazz music, funk music emerged in the United States around the 1960s and became popular. It was known for its upbeat nature and as the main form of dance music in the time period. The key element that made funk music special was its focus on the […]

Concert Post

Concert Report By: Nyla Griffith This semester I had the privilege of attending the Spelman and Morehouse College Glee Club Christmas Carols Concert. I attended the Sunday, December 8th performance at King’s Chapel at Morehouse College. It lasted about two and a half hours and featured the glee clubs of both Spelman College and Morehouse […]

Blues and the Black Workforce

Blues and the Black Workforce By: Nyla Griffith The era of the blues saw many socioeconomic changes and was heavily influenced by what was happening in the world at the time. Primarily in the early 20th century, the blues emerged from folk music as a secular form of music. But what was going on in […]


Hip-Hop By: Nyla Griffith in the 1970s. It revolutionized both music, and the United States as a whole. In its early days, hip-hop was classified by its constant beat and rapping with each rapper having their own style. In the early days it also was used by artists as a way to communicate with fans […]


Jazz & Black Intellectualism By: Nyla Griffith Jazz as a genre emerged in New Orleans in the early 1920s to the 1930s. More specifically, it emerged in a place called Congo Square where there was a huge mix of various cultures from the western hemisphere. The Jazz era so many subgenres emerging from it. The […]


Gospel By: Nyla Griffith Following the era of blues and jubilee quartets, a new genre emerged. Gospel reached its peak in the 1920s. Gospel music became the most recent form of sacred music. Starting with Negro Spirituals in the 1800s, sacred music then turned into jubilee quartets, which eventually turned into Gospel music in the […]


The Era of Disco By: Nyla Griffith Influenced by pop, funk, and soul, the genre of disco emerged in New York in the 1970s as a new form of dance music. In turn, it influenced techno music and house music.  In general, disco music was characterized by its over-the-top nature as well as its upbeat […]

Musical Theater

Musical Theater By: Nyla Griffith Musical theater began around the 1840s and continues to the modern day. Originally black people, and specifically African Americans were not permitted to participate in musical theater. So in order to display black people in these musicals, white people would perform in blackface, often mocking black people. Early forms of […]


Techno By: Nyla Griffith The genre of techno, which followed the jazz era was a sub genre of funk music. It originated in Detroit, Michigan in the early 1980s. Primarily classified by its high-pitched technological sounds, techno music brought a new feel to American Music as a whole. Techno music consisted of a steady four-count […]


Ragtime Following the era of Negro Spirituals and folk music, a new era emerged. The genre of Ragtime was a uniquely American genre created and mainly performed by African Americans in the time period of 1896- 1920. Ragtime was primarily played on pianos but a vocal sub-genre did exist. It was easily accessible to “regular” […]

Jennifer Hudson

Jennifer Hudson By: Nyla Griffith Bibliography Jennifer Hudson was born on September 12, 1981 in Chicago, Illinois. She began singing at the age of seven in her local church choir. As a teenager, she spent her days performing at weddings and musical theater performances. In 1999 she graduated from the Dunbar Vocational Career Academy. Later, […]

Negro Spirituals

What are Negro Spirituals? Negro Spirituals was one of the first genres to be born in the United States. It was created in slavery times by African American slaves. Symbolizing home and resistance to slavery, Negro Spirituals were the first songs that included religion. Negro Spirituals articulated the struggle of slavery and were most often […]

Jubilee Quartets

Jubilee Quartets- By Nyla Griffith In the period of 1880-1929, a new genre of music was born in the African American community. This new genre is known as the jubilee quartet. Although the term”quartet” would imply that  there are four members, this is not necessarily always the case. Jubilee Quartets can have more than four […]

A Review of “Folk Music: An African-American Creation”

A Review of “Folk Music: An African-American Creation” By: Nyla Griffith Folk music began hundreds of years ago as a result of the oppression that African Americans faced during slavery. “Folk Music: An African American Creation” by Kyana Martinez (2019) articulates the details of the origins of folk music by African Americans. While this article […]

“Lift Every Voice: Marian Anderson” Article Review

“Lift Every Voice: Marian Anderson” Article Review By: Nyla Griffith “Lift Every Voice: Marian Anderson, Florence B. Price And The Sound of Black Sisterhood” by Alisha Lola Jones is a very moving article. It details the accomplishments and style of Marian Anderson in her efforts to change the view of black women in the public […]

Nyla Griffith

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