American Music Essay

One can hear the fine-tuning of rhythm and blues in works by Ellington, Billie Holiday, Ella Fitzgerald and Cleo Patra Brown.The swing era is known by recordings of Tommy Dorsey, Benny Goodman and Artie Shaw.Churchgoers sang ballads of British and Spanish origin entertained folks. Religious and public ceremonies were often called for music making.

Face-to-face communication among these settlers was normal.

Many people remained illiterate or obtained the most meager formal education.

There was also a newly emerging team in the film industry.

The record industry and radio grew in strength and also influenced the decade.

The Europeans contributed fiddles and pianos, while Africans brought the knowledge of making and performing upon beanlike instruments with them.

By the 19th century, these three instruments were played by black and white Americans, but often in different ways.Scotch, Irish and German pioneers settled in the mountains, far from the port cities and slowly growing cities.In the southwest, pioneering Spaniards gradually moved into what would become New Mexico and Arizona.What is today considered ‘American folk music” thus began as a mix of music from many countries, cultures, and work environments.Distinctions between folk and other genres were further eroded by singers who merged traditional folk with songs about political issues.In the early part of the 19th century the states east of Mississippi River dominated our country.Outside of New England, the Middle Atlantic States, along with the far Southwest, became the first extensively settled sections of the United States.Outside of the major cities most of the United States remained a rural population.Musical activity was an important means of entertainment at home, at homes of neighbors and in church.They moved from rural areas to urban factory towns, from city to city and state to state in search of work.Many of these people felt as if they had been torn from their social and cultural roots.

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