Textbook Notes (363,559)
United States (204,628)
Music (10)
MUSIC 0711 (10)
Chapter 2

MUSIC 0711 Chapter 2: New Orleans

7 Pages
Unlock Document

University of Pittsburgh
MUSIC 0711
Doretta Whalen

New Orleans New Orleans as a Focal Point:  Jazz is the result of years of cross-fertilization and the Africanization (and African- Americanization) of West African and West European culture in North America  Jazz was not only in New Orleans but on the plantations in the north and south of the United States during the 1600, 1700, and 1800s  Numerous studies of the birth of jazz pay special tribute to New Orleans as the one and only birthplace of jazz  Jazz developed more openly in New Orleans due to the money and traffic generated from having one of the biggest seaports in the country  The booming economic climate of New Orleans provided a base for the entertainment business to grow o Entertainers from New Orleans as well as the surrounding areas all settled in the Crescent City to find work  During the early 1800s the city of New Orleans was dominated mainly by the French and Spanish o The general mood of the city was French o additional presence of Italians, Englishmen, some Germans, a few Slavs, some Scots and Irishmen, along with the African population  created a unique cultural setting for the new music  the style of music that emerged from within this melting pot was closely aligned to the music found in other Latin Catholic areas such as the Caribbean and parts of Central and Latin America  the mixture of French military marches, French quadrilles, Spanish folk songs, British folk songs, and indigenous African music was soon to develop into hot-tempered jazz Creoles:  more than any other group, the Creoles of Color were responsible for bringing together these various cultural entities and traits o creole: offspring of mixed French, Spanish, and African descent  some Creoles of Color became wealthy slave owners in their own right o many were well-educated, often studying in Europe to become musicians, lawyers, doctors, and so on o some remained abroad, some returned to their families – bringing with them their newly-acquired culture and education  creoles were accorded certain rights in the city of New Orleans that even poor whites did not enjoy  the Creoles were forced to develop a separate culture to adjust their lifestyle to the environment in which they found themselves th th  the Black Codes (Code Noir) was established during the late 18 and 19 century to govern the interaction between slave and slave owner o these laws were designed to protect the rights of the slave owner and to ensure the continued enslavement of the African o the Black Codes varied from state to state o the Black Codes provided for the freeing of many Creoles – mainly women and children  Creoles enjoyed the creative spontaneity of the African slave and at the same time acquired the habits and culture of the ruling European class  The fact that the Creole serves as a bridge between the traditional African culture in the New World and western European culture also plays a larger role in the development of jazz than is normally thought  Many of our great jazz personalities were Creoles o Alphonse Picou o Sidney Bechet o Barney Bigard o Albert Nicholas o Buddy Petit o Freddie Keppard o Kid Ory  The most recorded musical examples of early New Orleans jazz is Creole  It was not until the passing of the Segregation act of 1894 that the Creoles found themselves in the humiliating position of being on the same social level as their alienated Black African parents would be classified as Negro of Black, eliminating the well-protected social structure of the Creoles  The segregation act declared that all people descended from one or more African parents would be classified as Negro or Black, eliminating the well-protected social structure of the Creoles o Many of the Creole musicians found themselves forced to learn to play the very blues music that many of them had previously rejected  Was Creole music jazz or was it completely different music all together? o The music sounded more Latin than it did jazz or quasi-jazz o This distinctively Latin flavor can be attributed to the Spanish and Caribbean influence found in New Orleans during this period Language:  The influence language has on the development of various ethnic music is indeed interesting  Language is very influential in shaping the concept of all music  It is highly conceivable that the Creole language played a significant role in shaping the overall sound of early New Orleans music  The human voice is the original musical instrument – all other mechanical instruments fashioned after its sonority  The human voice is the first and most important sound we hear  Language in music (instrumental or vocal) should be one of the first subjects learned if one is to fully appreciate the aesthetics of the music to be studied  The difference in the pronunciation of a word can alter the entire feeling of the work  The tonal inflections, rhythmic structures, and the rejection of and injection of totally original vocal sounds all contributed to the development of the music we now call jazz Congo Square and Cross-Fertilization:  If not directly responsible for the birth of jazz, the city of New Orleans provided the proper environment for its early development  Many of the great musicians often associated with the New Orleans movement in jazz learned their craft in the Crescent City  In 1817 as a result of the frequent slave uprisings and the increasing fear of vodum, a group of slave owners and city officials got together and declared a vacant lot known as Congo Square an official “recreation” area for the slaves  Providing a meeting ground for the slaves gather and exchange cultures was not the intent of the slave owners  Congo Square was one of the most important points of cross-fertilization betwwen West European and West African cultures  The theory of jazz may have begun in Congo Square may provoke an argument from those who believe that jazz started with Dixieland in New Orleans, but the evidence I have mentioned cannot be ignored Vodoo:  It is almost impossible to discuss any form of African-American culture without discussing its religion  Voodoo was originally called vodun o Was originally an African religion  African slaves accepted Christianity mainly because of the European colonists’ domination of their lives o Many of the slaves who readily embraced the Christian religion did so only to please their masters o Others actually believed that they would be saved from the cruelties of slavery by accepting the religion of the slave master  During the early 1800s both slave and master were involved in the all-powerful mysticism of voodoo  Whether or not voodoo really works is not important o It is one part of the African-American’s religion that still exists today  Played a major role in the lives of certain musicians  The traditional music of the voodoo services affected the music of these musicians  The strong spirituality often associated with the true voodoo worshipper is present in the spiritual improvisational solos of the true jazz musicians Major Innovators:  Throughout the history of jazz a number of major innovators and popular figures have been given a historical status equal to that of heroes  “King” Buddy Bolden was one of the first jazz musicians to achieve such high status o Bolden was a cornetists who played in New Orleans during the latter part of the 1800s o One of the loudest cornet players in New Orleans o It was not easy for a Negro to assert an air on independence during this period in New Orleans  Bolden’s direct approach and somewhat unusual manner got him committed to a Louisiana mental institution  Buddy Bolden was not only an intelligent musician but worked at many other jobs like most of the other musicians around New Orleans  During the early years of jazz in New Orleans, it was very common for musicians to work at any job they could find  Being a jazz musician was not yet considered a profession worthy of one’s full attention  Among the many other early New Orleans musicians were ragtime pianist Jelly Roll Morton and co
More Less

Related notes for MUSIC 0711

Log In


Don't have an account?

Join OneClass

Access over 10 million pages of study
documents for 1.3 million courses.

Sign up

Join to view


By registering, I agree to the Terms and Privacy Policies
Already have an account?
Just a few more details

So we can recommend you notes for your school.

Reset Password

Please enter below the email address you registered with and we will send you a link to reset your password.

Add your courses

Get notes from the top students in your class.