The Info List - Jazz Age

--- Advertisement ---

(i) (i)

The JAZZ AGE was a period in the 1920s, ending with the Great Depression , in which jazz music and dance styles became popular, mainly in the United States
United States
, but also in Britain , France
and elsewhere. Jazz
originated in New Orleans
New Orleans
as a fusion of African and European music and played a significant part in wider cultural changes in this period, and its influence on pop culture continued long afterwards. The Jazz
Age is often referred to in conjunction with the Roaring Twenties .


* 1 How the Jazz
Age began * 2 Radio * 3 Youth * 4 Role of women * 5 Origins of jazz * 6 Classical music * 7 See also * 8 Notes * 9 Further reading * 10 External links


The birth of jazz music is credited to African Americans , but expanded and over time became modified to become socially acceptable to middle-class white Americans. Those critical of jazz saw it as music from people with no training or skill. White performers were used as a vehicle for the popularization of jazz music in America. Even though the jazz movement was taken over by the middle-class white population, it facilitated the mesh of African American traditions and ideals with white middle-class society. Cities like New York and Chicago
were cultural centers for jazz, and especially for African-American artists. People who were not familiar with jazz music could not recognize it by the way Africans Americans wrote it. Furthermore, the way African-Americans writers wrote about jazz music made it seem as though it was not a cultural achievement of the race.

From 1920 to 1933 Prohibition
in the United States
United States
banned the sale of alcoholic drinks, resulting in illicit speakeasies which became lively venues of the " Jazz
Age", hosting popular music including current dance songs, novelty songs and show tunes. Jazz
began to get a reputation as being immoral, and many members of the older generations saw it as threatening the old cultural values and promoting the new decadent values of the Roaring Twenties . Professor Henry van Dyke of Princeton University wrote: "... it is not music at all. It's merely an irritation of the nerves of hearing, a sensual teasing of the strings of physical passion." The media too began to denigrate jazz. _The New York Times_ used stories and headlines to pick at jazz: Siberian villagers were said by the paper to have used jazz to scare off bears, when in fact they had used pots and pans; another story claimed that the fatal heart attack of a celebrated conductor was caused by jazz.

From 1919, Kid Ory 's Original Creole Jazz
Band of musicians from New Orleans played in San Francisco
San Francisco
and Los Angeles
Los Angeles
, where in 1922 they became the first black jazz band of New Orleans
New Orleans
origin to make recordings. That year also saw the first recording by Bessie Smith , the most famous of the 1920s blues singers. Chicago
, meanwhile, was the main center developing the new "Hot Jazz
", where King Oliver joined Bill Johnson . Bix Beiderbecke formed The Wolverines in 1924.

That same year, Louis Armstrong joined the Fletcher Henderson dance band as featured soloist, leaving in 1925. The original New Orleans style was polyphonic, with theme variation and simultaneous collective improvisation. Armstrong was a master of his hometown style, but by the time he joined Henderson's band, he was already a trailblazer in a new phase of jazz, with its emphasis on arrangements and soloists. Armstrong's solos went well beyond the theme-improvisation concept, and extemporized on chords, rather than melodies. According to Schuller, by comparison, the solos by Armstrong's bandmates (including a young Coleman Hawkins ), sounded "stiff, stodgy," with "jerky rhythms and a grey undistinguished tone quality." The following example shows a short excerpt of the straight melody of "Mandy, Make Up Your Mind" by George W. Meyer and Arthur Johnston (top), compared with Armstrong's solo improvisations (below) (recorded 1924). (The example approximates Armstrong's solo, as it does not convey his use of swing.) Top: excerpt from the straight melody of "Mandy, Make Up Your Mind" by George W. Meyer ">, Louis Armstrong , Duke Ellington , and Count Basie . Several musicians grew up in musical families, where a family member would often teach how to read and play music. Some musicians, like Pops Foster , learned on homemade instruments. Urban radio stations played African-American jazz more frequently than suburban stations, due to the concentration of African Americans in urban areas such as New York and Chicago. Younger demographics popularized the black-originated dances such as the Charleston as part of the immense cultural shift the popularity of jazz music generated. The migration of African Americans from the American south introduced the culture born out of a repressive, unfair society to the American north where navigating through a society with little ability to change played a vital role in the birth of jazz.


The spread of jazz was encouraged by the introduction of large-scale radio broadcasts in 1932. The radio was described as the "sound factory." Radio made it possible for Americans to experience different styles of music without physically visiting a jazz club. The radio provided Americans with a trendy new avenue for exploring the world through broadcasts and concerts from the comfort of their living room. These were broadcast from cities such as New York, Chicago, Kansas City, and Los Angeles. There were two categories of live music on the radio: concert music and big band dance music. The concert music was known as "potter palm" and was concert music by amateurs, usually volunteers. This type of radio was a way of making broadcasting cheaper. This type of radio's popularity started to decrease as commercial radio increased.

The next type of music is known as big band dance music. This type is played by professionals and was featured from nightclubs, dance halls, and ballrooms. Musicologist Charles Hamm described three types of jazz music at the time: black music for black audiences, black music for white audiences, and white music for white audiences. Jazz artists like Louis Armstrong originally received very little airtime because most stations preferred to play the music of white American jazz singers. Other jazz vocalists include Bessie Smith and Florence Mills . In urban areas, such as Chicago
and New York, African-American jazz was played on the radio more often than in the suburbs. Big-band jazz, like that of James Reese Europe and Fletcher Henderson in New York, attracted large radio audiences.


1920s youth used the influence of jazz to rebel against the traditional culture of previous generations. This youth rebellion of the 1920s went hand-in-hand with fads like bold fashion statements (flappers ), women smoking cigarettes, free talk about sex, and new radio concerts. Dances like the Charleston , developed by African Americans, suddenly became popular among the youth. Traditionalists were aghast at what they considered the breakdown of morality. Some urban middle-class African Americans perceived jazz as "devil's music", and believed the improvised rhythms and sounds were promoting promiscuity.


Women played an important role throughout jazz\'s history . With women's suffrage —the right for women to vote—at its peak with the ratification of the Nineteenth Amendment on August 18, 1920, and the entrance of the free-spirited flapper , women began to take on a larger role in society and culture. With women now taking part in the work force after the end of the First World War there were many more possibilities for women in terms of social life and entertainment. Ideas such as equality and free sexuality were very popular during the time and women seemed to capitalize during this period. The 1920s saw the emergence of many famous women musicians including Bessie Smith . Bessie Smith also gained attention because she was not only a great singer but also an African-American woman. She has grown through the ages to be one of the most well respected singers of all time. Singers such as Billie Holiday and Janis Joplin were inspired by Bessie Smith.

Lovie Austin (1887–1972) was a Chicago-based bandleader, session musician (piano), composer, singer, and arranger during the 1920s classic blues era. She and Lil Hardin Armstrong are often ranked as two of the best female jazz blues piano players of the period.

Piano player Lil Hardin Armstrong was originally a member of King Oliver's band with Louis, and went on to play piano in her husband's band the Hot Five and then his next group called the Hot Seven It was not until the 1930s and 1940s that many women jazz singers, such as Bessie Smith and Billie Holiday were recognized as successful artists in the music world. These women were persistent in striving to make their names known in the music industry and lead the way for many more women artists to come.


music originated in New Orleans
New Orleans
in the "sub-style" of Dixieland Jazz. The music that began in New Orleans
New Orleans
was largely created from African folk music with some European roots in it. New Orleans provided great opportunity for such an occurrence because it was a port city, with many different cultures intertwined. While in New Orleans, jazz gained influence from creole , ragtime , and most importantly blues music . Two important aspects of jazz are swing and improvisation . The famous jazz trumpeter Louis Armstrong 's most influential impact upon jazz was bringing an improvisational soloist to the forefront of a piece.


As jazz flourished, American elites who preferred classical music sought to expand the listenership of their favored genre, hoping that jazz would not become mainstream. Controversially, jazz became an influence on composers as diverse as George Gershwin and Herbert Howells .


* 1920s portal

* Flapper * Interwar Britain * Roaring Twenties


* ^ McCANN, PAUL. 2008. "Performing Primitivism: Disarming the Social Threat of Jazz
in Narrative Fiction of the Early Sixties." _Journal of Popular Culture_ 41, no. 4: 658–675. America: History & Life, p. 3. * ^ _A_ _B_ Berger, Morroe (1 January 1947). "Jazz: Resistance to the Diffusion of a Culture-Pattern". _The Journal of Negro History_. 32 (4): 461–494. JSTOR 2714928 . doi :10.2307/2714928 . * ^ _A_ _B_ _C_ Barlow, William (1 January 1995). "Black Music on Radio During the Jazz
Age". _African American Review_. 29 (2): 325–328. JSTOR 3042311 . doi :10.2307/3042311 . * ^ _A_ _B_ Ward, Geoffrey C.; Burns, Ken (October 8, 2002). _Jazz: A History of America's Music_ (1st ed.). New York: Alfred A. Knopf. ISBN 978-0-679-76539-4 . * ^ Cooke 1999 , p. 54 * ^ "Kid Ory". The Red Hot Archive. Retrieved October 29, 2007. * ^ "Bessie Smith". The Red Hot Archive. Retrieved October 29, 2007. * ^ "Fletcher Henderson: \'Architect of Swing\'". NPR. December 19, 2007. Retrieved January 27, 2017. * ^ Schuller (1968: 91). * ^ Schuller (1968: 93) * ^ Cooke 1999 , pp. 56–59, 78–79, 66–70 * ^ Mario Dunkel, "W. C. Handy, Abbe Niles, and (Auto)biographical Positioning in the Whiteman Era," _Popular Music and Society_ 38.2 (2015): 122–139. * ^ Cooke 1999 , pp. 82–83, 100–103 * ^ Schuller (1968: 88) * ^ Cunningham, Lawrence, John J. Reich, and Lois Fichner-Rathus. _Culture Spring 2001/2002; 71–73. Print. * ^ "The Jazz
Age". Boundless.com. July 21, 2015. Retrieved August 28, 2015. * ^ "The Harlem Renaissance and the Jazz
Age". Tdl.org. Retrieved August 28, 2015. * ^ Biocca, Frank, "Media and Perceptual Shifts: Early Radio and the Clash of Musical Cultures", _Journal of Popular Culture_, 24:2 (1990), p. 3. * ^ Savran, David. "The Search for America's Soul: Theatre in the Jazz
Age." _Theatre Journal_ 58.3 (2006), 459-476. Print. * ^ Paula S. Fass, _The Damned and the Beautiful: American Youth in the 1920s_ (1977), p. 22. * ^ Dinerstein, Joel. "Music, Memory, and Cultural Identity in the Jazz
Age." _American Quarterly_ 55.2 (2003), 303-313. Print. * ^ Ward, Larry F. "Bessie", _Notes_, Volume 61, Number 2, December 2004, pp. 458–460 (review). Music Library Association. * ^ For her music see "Black Women in America: Lovie Austin" (June 6, 2011). * ^ Santelli, Robert. _The Big Book of Blues_, Penguin Books (2001), p. 20; ISBN 0-14-100145-3 * ^ _A_ _B_ _C_ Borzillo, Carrie, "Women in Jazz: Music on Their Terms--As Gender Bias Fades, New Artists Emerge", _Billboard _ 108:26 (June 29, 1996), pp. 1, 94–96. * ^ " Dixieland (AKA Early Jazz)". _www.jazzinamerica.org_. Retrieved October 19, 2015. * ^ "Where did jazz come from?". _www.jazzinamerica.org_. Retrieved October 19, 2015. * ^ _A_ _B_ Biocca, Frank (1990). "Media and Perceptual Shifts: Early Radio and the Clash of Musical Cultures". _The Journal of Popular Culture_. 24 (2): 1. doi :10.1111/j.0022-3840.1990.2402_1.x . * ^ Biocca, Frank, "Media and Perceptual Shifts: Early Radio and the Clash of Musical Cultures", _Journal of Popular Culture_, 24:2 (1990), p. 9.


* Allen, Frederick Lewis (1931). _Only Yesterday: An Informal History of the Nineteen-Twenties_. online edition * Best, Gary Dean. _The Dollar Decade: Mammon and the Machine in 1920s America_. Praeger Publishers, 2003. * Berger, Morroe. "Jazz: Resistance to the Diffusion of a Culture-Pattern". _The Journal of Negro History_ 32 (October 1947): 461-494 * Chevan, David. "Musical Literacy and Jazz
Musicians in the 1910s and 1920s." _Current Musicology_ * Dinerstein, Joel. "Music, Memory, and Cultural Identity in the Jazz
Age." _American Quarterly_ * Dumenil, Lynn. _The Modern Temper: American Culture and Society in the 1920s_. Hill and Wang, 1995. * Fass, Paula. _The Damned and the Beautiful: American Youth in the 1920s_. Oxford University Press, 1977. * David E. Kyvig ; _Daily Life in the United States, 1920–1939: Decades Promise and Pain_. Greenwood Press, (2002). online edition * Leuchtenburg, William . _The Perils of Prosperity, 1914–1932_ University of Chicago
Press, 1955. * Lynd, Robert S. , and Helen Merrell Lynd . _Middletown: A Study in Modern American Culture_. Harcourt, Brace and World, 1929. Famous sociological study of Muncie, Indiana, in the 1920s. * Mowry; George E. (ed.). _The Twenties: Fords, Flappers, readings. * Parrish, Michael E. _Anxious Decades: America in Prosperity and Depression, 1920–1941_. W. W. Norton, 1992. * Peretti, Burton W. "The Great Travelers." _The Creation of Jazz: Music, Race, and Culture in Urban America_. * Savran, David. "The Search for America's Soul: Theatre in the Jazz Age". _Theatre Journal_.


* The Jazz
Age In