How Music in the Harlem Renaissance has influenced many of the artists we listen today Musicians during the Harlem Renaissance created a style and movement that simply took Americans by storm. Musicians such as Duke Ellington and Louis Armstrong have inspired others all over the country. The Renaissance itself was not only an observation of life for African Americans, but it also showed Americans that they have a place in society. All of the musicians, writers, and artists shared a common purpose.
This purpose was to create art that reflected the Afro American community. Through this era, African Americans provided themselves with their cultural roots and a promise for a better future. Music in this era was the beginning. It was the beginning of new life for musicians and African Americans. All types of music require musicians.
In the H. R (Harlem Renaissance), there were many who contributed to this new style of music known as jazz. These musicians all have their own style and form. Each of these styles has in some way influenced the evolution of jazz.
Louis "Sach mo" Armstrong is recognized as the most famous trumpet player of this time. His "hot bop" style was heard in places like the Cotton Club and the Apollo Theatre. Everyone from all over the country would come to see him. Armstrong recorded such works as I'm in the Mood for Love, and You Rascal you (web). Another famous person during this era was Coleman Hawkins, a saxophone player. Hawkins is recognized as the first great saxophonists of Jazz.
His most famous work was a piece named Body and Soul (web). Hawkins has also recorded with artists such as Thelonious Monk and Duke Ellington. Other people such as Bessie Smith, Josephine Baker, Duke Ellington, and "Dizzied" Gillespie have also made many contributions to the development of Jazz. By the end of World War I, Black Americans were facing their lowest point in history since slavery.
Most of the blacks migrated to the northern states such as New York and Chicago. It was in New York where the "Harlem Renaissance" was born. This movement with jazz was used to rid of the restraints held against African Americans. One of the main reasons that jazz was so popular was that it allowed the performer to create the rhythm. With This in Mind performers realized that there could not be any wrong to play Jazz. Jazz's most typical instruments were the piano, string bass, trumpet, saxophone, and drums (web).
All the instruments work together, just as the African American community at this point in time, to try and create beautiful harmony with hard but yet smooth sounds. Jazz is a section music that is based on feeling. Artists would use their feelings to create music, just as Picasso would paint his pictures. When an artist felt happy he or she would maybe play a little ragtime, or swing Jazz. If he or she were feeling sad, maybe they would play some blues type jazz. Jazz, unlike any other type of music, influences through emotions.
Jazz is one section of music that was created during the H. R and was never forgotten afterward. During the Jazz era, many sections had broken away and created new identities for jazz. Swing, blues, ragtime, and bebop were a couple.
Bebop, unlike most styles of jazz, was a harder beating section of music. "Technically it was characterized by fast tempos, complex harmonies, intricate melodies, and rhythm sections that laid down a steady beat only on the bass and the drummer's ride cymbal. Bebop tunes were often labyrinthine, full of surprising twists and tunes. All these factors - plus the predominance of small combos in bebop - set the music apart from the sing bands of the 1930's." (web) Many musicians made transitions from swing jazz to bebop. The most famous bassists are Ray Brown and Charles Mig us. Of the composers was T add Dane ron.
In addition to the composers, the drummers that were best known were Art Blakey and Kenny Clarke. Pianists Thelonious Monk and Bud Powell were also influential. On the trombone, J. J. Johnson was the most famous. And lastly, "Dizzy" Gillespie made his contribution on the trumpet.
Just as the blues was played through feeling and expression, bebop also was played with excitement. Each composition had a story. The jazz age was developing and flourishing into one of the most listened to types of music during this era. The impression that the H. R. has left for musicians today has been tremendous.
Musicians such as John Test and Kenny G were of the musicians today who have been influenced by the movement. Kenny G was inspired so much by the movement, that he remade a couple pieces from Louis Armstrong to Duke Ellington. All of the artists heard today have been in some way inspired by the H. R.
Jazz musicians have been so affected by the movement, that now all races contribute to the music. Now people like Carlos Santana and other Latin musicians have contributed their talents. During the H. R, most musicians had a band that supported them.
Now jazz can be solo or with a band. Through the many ideas added to Jazz, this style of music is one of the most famous types of music in the world. Unfortunately jazz musicians today probably would not fit in during the H. R era. Jazz for African Americans during this time was their only way of breaking away from white America. In this sense jazz had more feeling; jazz had more stories to tell.
"Jazz isn't just music, but also a spirit that can express itself in almost anything. It was in many ways a revolt against restraints because it was so joyous." (J. A. Roger). The styles of today's artists would definitely change.
The musicians today mainly focus on one type of jazz. During the H. R musicians explored many sects of jazz. If the musicians today were to live during the H. R era they would play many instruments rather than just one. Music for African Americans was an identity.
How much feeling would an artist put into their work if they did not have to prove themselves to the rest of society? Jazz from the beginning has introduced tons of famous musicians. None were more famous than Duke Ellington during the H. R. and now Kenny G. Both of these musical geniuses have help develop and shape jazz. Although they have many ideas similar to this, they have many differences as far as accomplishments, contributions, instruments, and style.
Edward (Duke) Ellington was the "Godfather" of jazz. He was given several awards form around the world including the Presidential Medal of Freedom by the U. S and the Legion of Honor by the French government. Duke played instruments such as the piano, trumpet, and other wind instruments. Duke unlike many other musicians during this time was a composer. He has produced works such as Rockin' in Rhythm, Satin Doll, and New Orleans.
Duke's style is eclectic, combining blues, various art forms of jazz, and the Big-bad sound of swing music. Duke referred to jazz as "Negro Folk Music" and the "American Idiom." As much as Duke contributed to jazz, he tried to spend most of his time away from it. His style of music shaped jazz into a standard that was never forgotten. (web) Kenny G is one of the most sought-after special guest performers in the recording industry.
Kenny unlike Duke plays the Saxophone as well as the clarinet. Kenny is also a soloist. Duke is supported around his band "The Washingtonians." Kenny has the recipient of a Grammy, American Music award, Soul Train award, World Music award, and the N. A. A.
C. P. Image award. Kenny wanted to inspire others in the same way that he had been moved to write and perform his own music.
He released a record that makes tribute to the composers and recording artists who have set "standards" for which Kenny has always held his highest esteem. Kenny's style is smooth and it reflects more of an R&B or Pop level. Although Kenny has many differences when compared to Duke, he has carried the jazz spirit from him and he's spreading it to others, just like Duke. (web) Jazz as we know it today has been commercialized. During the H. R, you would only catch jazz in clubs or concerts at the Cotton Club and the Apollo Theatre.
Its style has influenced classical composers and has migrated. This Migration was not only through the United States, but Paris would become a musical center for jazz. Jazz for most musicians now is an activity. For African Americans, jazz is no longer used to weed themselves out of society. Jazz is now made for enjoyment purposes. Because jazz is not an identity statement, some of the feelings and expressions that were used during the beginning of the era have diffused.
With this jazz has become weaker, but well known. Jazz will always continue to have character. Jazz will always be art. Jazz will always have a story to tell. Though Jazz has changed, the background behind it still inspires those today. Even though each artist has their particular style or expression, they all can agree that music is art.
They can all agree that Music is emotions and feelings. Through the years, just as all things do, Jazz and Bebop have grown and flourished across America and the World. All in all Jazz for African Americans opened the doors in America, jazz alone opened doors and ears all across the Earth. Works cited: web Net Zero. 6-2-02 web Net Zero. 6-2-02 web Net Zero 6-2-02 web Net Zero.
6-2-02 Win tz, Cary D. The Harlem Renaissance. Houston Texas: Rice University Press, 1988 web Net Zero 6-2-02.