The Evolution of Coltrane

John Coltrane John Coltrane was one of the most versatile artists of his time. A dynamic saxophonist and composer, Coltrane revolutionized jazz at many points in his career. He was a pioneer in Hard Bop, Free Jazz, and Modal Jazz. His four part modal jazz album, “A Love Supreme,” was regarded as one of the […]

Wayne Shorter and the Fusion Revolution

The Life of Wayne Shorter Wayne Shorter is an American Jazz Composer and Saxophonist. Born August 25th, 1933 in Newark, NJ, Wayne Shorter helped pioneer the Jazz fusion genre. When they say ‘jazz,’ I’m thinking of a word called ‘the creative process.’ It intersects every vein and tributary, avenue, path, that everyone’s living. It crosses […]

Thelonious Monk: Concert Report

Thelonious Monk was a jazz pianist and composer who performed in the Bebop style. Known for his eccentric performance style, Monk is a personification of formalized jazz. In his concert, Monk made jazz a matter of solo. The saxophone is used as a primarily solo instrument, in conjunction with piano. Thelonious Monk uses highly dissonant […]

The Late Work of Louis Armstrong

The Late Work of Louis Armstrong Musical Characteristics The late work of Louis Armstrong moved out of the big band tradition, transitioning into a smaller group of musicians. During this time, Louis Armstrong performed as a singer slightly more frequently than as a trumpeter. However, when he did play, his technical ability was just as […]

Let’s Talk About Techno

Let’ Talk About Techno What is Techno? Techno music was developed in Detroit, Michigan in the 1980s. It was primarily played in underground clubs. The genre combined house music, native to Chicago, electronic jazz, and funk to create a new sound. Techno music, unlike earlier genres, was created by sound engineers using computers. As such, […]

Audra McDonald

Audra McDonald Audra McDonald, born july 3rd, 1970 in West Berlin, Germany, is an American singer and actress.  She is a classically trained Soprano, and earning a Bachelor of Music from the Julliard School of Music in 1993.  She is largely known for her work on the Broadway stage, portraying Bess in George Gershiwn’s “Porgy and Bess”, […]

Blame it on the Boogie!

Blame it on the Boogie! The Disco Era Disco was a genre heavily associated with freedom: it was a soundtrack of resistance, laced through other art forms such as film and fashion. Characteristics: Fast tempo Orchestral elements to help strengthen the melody Includes funk sounds Instruments: Horns, electric guitar, strong bass   Popular Artists: Kool […]

It’s Ragtime!

It’s Ragtime! Ragtime music was music for the people, by the people. It was widely accessible through sheet music, and was played in many Black households from 1896 – 1920. Ragtime music was also performed in cake walks, which  allowed enslaved people to mock of slave masters without punishment. The masters would be judges, and […]

All That Jazz

All That Jazz Jazz became a conversation between artists: a representation of black intellectualism on a more “sophisticated” stage than its predecessors, blues and ragtime. Jazz originated in New Orleans in the 1930s, which at the time was a melting pot of cultures. Trained musicians and club musicians of the era collaborated together, and created […]

The Legacy of Blues

Singin’ The Blues Blues was a genre created to express the woes of everyday life. It was a description of Black life in its rawest state, and like the genres it developed from, it provided Black people with an outlet: a creative bastion that allowed them to be more than what white supremacist society dictated.  […]

Negro Spirituals

Negro Spirituals The transatlantic slave trade was a dark time for enslaved Africans, as colonizers attempted to strip them of everything that pertains to the human experience: family, individuality, culture, and music. During this time, Black people fought to maintain a distinct culture, creating many new forms of art. The sacred music that enslaved Africans […]

Review of Folk Music: African American Legacy

The article on folk music entitled, “African American Legacy,” was a good introduction into the subject. While not extremely comprehensive, the author gave us the basic elements of African American folk music as well as a brief history on its formation. When discussing the elements of this music, including call and response, polyrhythms, and acculturation, […]