Music of the 30's & 40's

By Essence Ward

Music of the thirties and forties was filled with swing and bebop. It was a time when dancing was how you listened to music. Artists such as Louis Armstrong (the king of swing), Myles Davis, Billie Holiday and Duke Ellington were raving. The music was the fuel for African Americans all around the country  who were still fighting to receive basic human treatment.

The music of the thirties and forties was an outlet for black people. They were still fighting for human decency as well as trying to improve their lives through education but often denied. The release of dancing to the jazz, swing and bebop gave them the joy to continue on to the next day.

Jazz derived from the blues. In the early jazz you can still hear the 12 bar format the blues is known for, jazz simply uses the big band. However also Jazz comes from many different cultures intertwining at Congo square. Buddy Bolden was the first big jazz artist and he is known to have been at congo square as a child listening to all these forms of music and created something beautiful. Louis armstrong soon took over the title as the superstar of jazz and became the model of jazz today. Louis Armstrong influenced a great deal of artists not only on the trumpet but across the board. Jazz soon became known internationally. Places such as Kanas City and New York were the most popular.

New York Harlem, 52nd street, the street, was the place to be as an upcoming jazz artists. It is known to be where bebop came to its popularity. Bebop was known as the new jazz and it was played a little different by everyone. 

The music of this time gave birth to so many other genres. It allowed for improvisation and for black people to freely express themselves. It also got black people through very difficult times.