Jazz it Up Then

Jazz emerged as a genre in the twentieth century in New Orleans and is characterized by improvisation, syncopation, swing, blues feeling, and harmonic complexity. The sound of jazz has remnants of French, Spanish, Creole, Cuban, and Caribbean in it.  In the Jazz genre, instrumental performance is more prestigious than vocal performance.  Within the genre of jazz, there are several subgenres which include;

  • Bebop – a combo jazz improvised style that evolved from big band swing, which is characterized by fast tempos and harmonic structure
  • Cool jazz – characterized by a relaxed feeling and light tone color texture
  • Hard bop – incorporates phrasings and harmonies of blues, rhythm and blues, and gospel music
  • Modal jazz – based on the repetition of one or two chords
  • Free jazz – abandoned the use of fixed harmonic and rhythmic patterns
  • Jazz fusion – incorporates rhythms, harmonies, and melodies from funk and rock

Out of all subgenres, I mostly enjoy cool jazz because it gives a relaxing feeling and is very enjoyable. Jazz, however, is not a genre I listen to often on my own. After studying this genre I can pick up on the elements of it within the music that I listen to, and determine which subgenres are present.

Some prominent jazz artists include:

  • Louis Armstrong
  • Buddy Bolden
  • John Coltrane
  • Miles Davis
  • Duke Ellington
  • Benny Goodman
  • Charlie Parker

Below is a Jazz playlist:

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