Origins of jazz music
This music emerged in the early twentieth century from the folklore of the African-American community, that is, from the descendants of African slaves who came to the United States during the previous three centuries.
This origin explains its complex rhythms, its character of improvisation and, in many cases, its melancholic expression in the slower pieces. <jazz music>..
He also took elements of European music, especially in regard to musical arrangement and harmony, and various styles characteristic of different parts of the United States.
The various jazz trends were baptized with the names of the cities they came from. This is how New Orleans jazz was born in Chicago or in New York.
At first, this music was only played in small bars and clubs where exclusively customers of the black community attended. With time, the great American jazz clubs were born, like the Blue Note or the Cotton Club of New York, which opened their doors in the time of the gangsters. jazz mucic.
Evolution of Jazz
The jazz that could be heard during the 1920s is very different from the one that emerged after the Second World War or from what is played today.
The new musical style also influenced classical music, and composers such as George Gershwin took it to the big concert halls. At the same time, some European authors, such as Ígor Stravinski or Béla Bartók, included elements of jazz in their works.
In recent times, it has been mixed with other musical styles, giving rise to genres such as jazz-fusion, acid jazz or Latin jazz. However, there are still performers who prefer to continue playing traditional jazz.
Great Jazz musicians
Throughout the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, great jazz performers have emerged in each of its variants and eras. Among the great singers of this style we can highlight Bessie Smith, Louis Armstrong, Billie Holliday, Ella Fitzgerald or Betty Carter.
Great jazz pianists have been (or are) Earl Fatha Hines, Art Tatum, Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Thelonious Monk, Herbie Hancock, Chick Corea, Keith Jarrett or Spanish Tete Montoliú.
Among the many great saxophonists that jazz has given, we can now mention Coleman Hawkins, Lester Young, Charlie Parker, Sonny Rollins, John Coltrane Ornette Coleman, Joe Henderson or Branford Marsalis.
Memorable trumpeters were Louis Armstrong, Dizzy Gillespie or Miles Davis, and Wynton Marsalis is today, while the payroll of great performers should also include, for example, the clarinetist Benny Goodman or the percussionist Tito Puente.
Characteristics of Jazz
The harmony and rhythms of jazz are very special. Jazz musicians knew, from the beginning, to give their creations a personal character that differentiated them from other musical styles. jazz music.
It is a style that gives great freedom to the performers, but, at the same time, it requires a deep knowledge of music and a lot of originality to develop it.
Since its inception, jazz has had many different branches, such as the Blues, which descends directly from the chants of black slaves that were brought to the United States, boogie-woogie or ragtime, among others. jazz music..