Jazz Influence On American Culture And The African American Community

1008 Words Dec 31st, 2015 5 Pages
And All That Jazz
Elie Kern 11/20/15
11AP3 Mrs. Wang-Birnbaum
Jazz has had a powerful impact on both general American culture and the African-American community. From its modest beginnings, this type of music is now one of the most well-known genres in the world, and this process has impacted American music tremendously. For the African American community, the development of jazz has advanced the goal of racial equality. The history of how jazz became as important as it has is long, complicated, and, at times, controversial. Despite many questions about the origins of jazz, most historians agree that its roots can be traced from Africa, though some passionately disagree. The most common theory offered by experts is that jazz was inspired by African music, but still has aspects of traditional western European music as well. These experts maintain that the improvisation and the dominance of percussion are the two aspects of jazz that are most similar to its African roots. Other historians believe, however, that black Americans who were several generations away from slavery created jazz. Therefore, any similarities to African music are merely coincidental. Whichever way jazz ended up in America, the city of New Orleans was undoubtedly the location that helped jazz music grow the most. Jazz was created as a product of New Orleans’ melting pot atmosphere. Unlike New York’s melting pot, the society created by a combination of cultures in New Orleans…

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