Why does it matter?
My earliest and fondest memories are centered around African American music. From dad constantly reminding me that “Isn’t She Lovely” by Stevie Wonder was the first song I ever heard to arguing with my cousins about which members of Destiny’s Child we were to car rides singing Earth, Wind, and Fire’s Greatest Hits with my Grandma. I’ve always loved listening to African American music of all genres. However, before now i’ve never taken the time to truly understand where its come from and what makes it so unique. Studying African American music has given me a greater appreciation for not only the music itself but for the people creating it and enjoying it. Music is a vital aspect of culture which narrates the experiences of people. Studying African American music is necessary because it shows the resistance and brilliance of black people through from a different angle. There is no way to make a tangible positive impact on a community without first understanding the culture they come from. African American music stands as a lasting reminder that black people are extraordinary.
I have provided a link to an article that examines the disconnect between loving black culture and loving black people. The simple fact that an article like that needed to be written is why studying African American music matters.