Historical and Social Impacts of Jazz in the 1920s
This project represents the social impact that jazz music had on Americans, specifically, African Americans, during the 1920s. In order to understand why the effect was so important, it is essential to know the history of how it came about. For this, I have highlighted a few of the main events and precursors for the evolution of jazz. Ragtime, primarily a solo piano, was a precursor to jazz that initiated the attention from all kinds of audiences including white Americans around 1890. Jazz was originally created in New Orleans in the early 20th century. Early jazz was composed of religious African American folk songs, field chants, and slave songs. Following this, more artists started improvising the sounds such as Ragtime, adding to what later became known as modern jazz. The 1920s became known as the jazz age as it began reaching the US and Europe. The impact of jazz music comes from the freedom of expression it allowed black artists to have. The quote, “Where words fail, music speaks.” by Hans Christian Anderson is representative of how they were able to transmit feelings and convey messages that they were not able to transmit solely via their words. Although jazz brought many negative social effects, and reminds many of black oppression and racism, its positive and long lasting impact is undoubtedly notable as it enabled a showcast of African American artists in American culture and society. It has lasted through the generations that followed, and to this day, it remains alive as new rhythms and improvisations are incorporated.