African American Music

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The African continent is about 20% of the worlds land mass. It has about 934 million people living within the area. There are over one thousand languages are spoken by the people of Africa some estimate this number to be closer to two thousand. One-third of the worlds languages are spoken only in Africa. In Africa, 41% of children aged 5 to 14 are involved in child labour. There are tribes that are still using tools that were found in caves hundreds of years ago. On average, people have to walk 3.5 miles a day, to get water. Between 1525 and 1866, 12.5 million Africans were kidnaped and sold into slavery in the Americas. While Africa is still a very undeveloped country and they continues to face challenges, one facet of the Africa cultures …show more content…
Many of the cultures use song and dance to ward of the evil spirits, pay respects to good spirits, the dead and their ancestors. Most of the music is functional in nature. There are different kinds of songs for work, ceremonies, religious music, and courtly music, and usually none of these are performed outside of their intended context. The role of music and dance are woven together and intersect with many aspects of African life. By marking important moments in peoples lives, music leaves a mark on their minds. For example if you hear one song at a naming ceremony, when you hear it again, you'll think of that moment. There is rarely an instance in Africa when music is being played and there is no dancing. Often times, people just join in, there is no routine to join in, you just …show more content…
The emphasis is placed on the rhythms more so than on the melody and harmony. While repetition is used repeatedly, improvisation is able to occur. African music is performed by groups of musicians, using polyphony, polyrhythm, and a conversational style of music and interlocking. One traditional style of the conversational element of African music is named call and response. This technique involves a leader and group of people. One person chants a phrase, and the group answers back with a different phrase. This creates a sense of unity within the group. In order for it to work, both sides have to do their part. Thus, if they want it to sound right, they must both be involved and work

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