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Blues was created before Jazz??

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by Music_for_life, Jul 26, 2012.

  1. Music_for_life


    Aug 6, 2010
    I always think of blues as the dorsal spine of Jazz, Jazz structure was developed taking a lot of Blues elements for the foundation.
    I am right?
    Or they are different styles that influenced each other, like for x Jazz-Blues progressions like Blues in F,??
    Jazz is the father of Blues or Blues the father of jazz?
  2. Jazzkuma


    Sep 12, 2008
    They sort of started to develop around the same time so i can't say blue is the father of jazz but each influenced each other. New Orleans was a huge melting pot and many styles of music emerged from this single city which then branched out into their own styles.
    They are family though, whether blues is the father or not is debatable.
  3. jordak


    Apr 7, 2011
    Queens, NY
    The "country blues" style of music was born in the Mississippi Delta in the early 1900's. The "Classic Blues" (characterized by ensemble playing in strict time and form) became popular in the 1920's. Blues was a familiar idiom in most of jazz's history although there was certainly cross influence from blues to jazz and back.

    Check out this book by Ted Gioia (that I intend to finish reading one day). It's a very thorough survey of the development of jazz. http://www.amazon.com/The-History-Jazz-Ted-Gioia/dp/019512653X
  4. Violen

    Violen Instructor in the Vance/Rabbath Method Banned

    Apr 19, 2004
    Kansas City Metro Area
    Endorsing Artist: Conklin Guitars (Basses)
    It was born in the south/new orleans at the turn of the century and developed out of Black Celebration music in New Orleans, Army Marches and African Chants/Call and Responce. Blues, Jazz and Dixieland all came about from the same time and place.
  5. Fergie Fulton

    Fergie Fulton

    Nov 22, 2008
    Retrovibe Artist rota
    Blues has two distinct periods! As I see it, due to the time it developed, there is Blues and there is Electric Blues.

    Blues is a Black folk music that tells a story (as is all Blues music of any genre ) the music was just there to help it along, this is why a lot of people say it sounds the same when they talk of the I IV V structure, they hear the structure not the story.

    Electric Blues added an energy to it, an urgency if you will and is credited as being started in Chicago, where black field and immigrant workers went looking for work in the 20s and 30s.
    Having larger and louder audiences the need to make the music louder to be heard became apparent. As such metal bodied guitars with resonators were made by these workers in the factories and foundries they worked in. Then the electric amp came along, and into that the microphone, then guitars, harmonicas etc each instrument took on a new voice and sound as the need to turn up created a overdriven sound..and the rest they say is history.

    The structure of Blues music has a relationship to Scottish Folk and Country music in that use of I IV V. The connection may have been from the young Scottish men removed and cleared from their homes and either sent, sold, kidnapped, or deported to the New World colonies as gang/slavemasters or overseers of the slaves. When the sang songs and laments of their homelands there is every chance that the slaves they were put in charge of found empathy in the musics structure they heard and embellished on it with there on stories and experiences to pass on to others but also remember where they came from.
    Music has a great way of calming fear, help relax or release "the soul" as it is basically talking out loud to music your fears and hopes....as we know talking out things is a great release. They may even have sat together of a night and sung together, that is not a far removed idea as they were all in a place they did not want to be, so remembering their homelands kept spirits up.
    But as I IV V is a common structure in many folk musics, it may just be the way it easily refrains that sound nice to the ear that it greats used.
    After all Cajun music is French based, Scotland and France have a long history of being friends and allies, the instrumentation of fiddle, accordion, with some sort of drum or device to beat on to create a rhythm on is shared, but not the time signatures or rhythms. Scottish music does not have the looseness of the way the Cajun music does bit agin Cajun music is considerd a genre of Blues...and of course Cajuns off shoots are to.

    Jazz is about the music, as there is no real limitation to the structure other than the ability of the player.
    Again charge of ' it all sound the same' can be made because sometimes there is no real apparent structure to hear. But like Blues, it's a generalisation, a characture of the genres. Maybe the big band era was a fusion of them both and put to structure for an audience to hear a strong beat, then dance to etc...
    The one thing I would say is you cannot say which one came first as that is lost in the sands of time and folk lore, but the fact that cities and towns were growing, all the people and musicians flooding in brought something, the musicians the music, the workers the audience and together it developed and evolved together. Bands getting smaller and smaller......combos, groups, artists etc getting louder. More people can hear the music, so more money for less musicians means it becomes a viable way to make money. Add on the new recording industry that is happening and well....
    For me the two run side by side as do the off shoots of the time, be-bop, rag time, boogie woodie etc...all have roots in Jazz and Blues as they do in them.
  6. +1 I've always thought of it this way. When you fancy up blues it turns into jazz.
  7. dougjwray


    Jul 20, 2005

    "Country blues originated ca. 1890-1905 in the Mississippi Delta and East Texas."
    The New Harvard Dictionary of Music
    Cambridge, Mass. : The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 1986
    p. 99

    "Genre created by Americans of African descent: with Jazz, one of the few new art forms of modern times, also (paradoxically) a true folk music, its development complete shortly after 1900. Jazz incl. a greater European element, while blues remained relatively unsophisticated, accessible to untrained players and singers, whose art was in subtle but direct communication ... First blues published '12 ('Dallas Blues', Handy's 'Memphis Blues'; but Bill Broonzy claimed that some of his blues dated to 1890); first blues recorded '20 by Mamie Smith."
    The Penguin Encyclopedia of Popular Music
    London : Viking, 1989
    p. 126

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