The Story of Jazz Essay

Custom Student Mr. Teacher ENG 1001-04 20 March 2017

The Story of Jazz

Among the most dominant genre in the field of music, the jazz manifests influential and very interesting characteristics making it a favorable expression style for the people. The musical genre of jazz employs several elements and characteristics making it distinguishable from other styles namely the element of improvisation, blue notes, swing, call and response, polyrhythm, and syncopation. Basing from these basic characteristics, jazz becomes the free and liberal musical art expression of the people with a touch of personality and independent style.

            The musical genre of jazz fundamentally develops from the heritage of the African-American musical style. Using its key element of improvisation, jazz is able to transcends the barriers and nature of the African-American music and develops into a more free and cultural expression. In its course of development, jazz was also able to adapt certain characteristics and styles from the genre of blues, swing, religious music, hillbilly music and other musical styles from West African and Western Music Traditions. Indeed, jazz becomes an inculcation of the different style to create a contemporary music genre that caters to the artistic creativity of composers and musicians.

            In the history of the development of jazz music, several personalities made a significant contribution to the establishment of the artistic characteristics of the said style such as the American musician Louis Armstrong and the American singer Billy Holiday. The characteristic of improvised soloing in the jazz genre was mainly inspired by Louis Armstrong promoting the change in its focus from collective melodic play. From this element, most jazz performance become a solo act of a single musician with a personal instrument either saxophone, trumpet or other and Collective band became a backup for the solo jazz artists.

Billy Holiday on the other hand promoted the style in jazz performance of a solo singer accompanied by one or two musical instrument. Holiday generally inspired the jazz presentation through vocal style and manipulation through improvised rendition, polyrhythm, and others. Because of the influences inspired by Louis Armstrong, Billy Holiday and other significant jazz musician, the genre and style of jazz music develops into an influential and attractive musical expression for the modern society.

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  • Date: 20 March 2017

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