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Black Music USA: From African to African American Music

Black Music USA: From African to African American Music

Chapter:
(p.3) Black Music USA: From African to African American Music
Source:
Charley Patton
Author(s):
Robert Sacré
Publisher:
University Press of Mississippi
DOI:10.14325/mississippi/9781496816139.003.0001

This chapter discusses the history of African American Music. Many of the roots of black American music lie in Africa more than four hundred years ago at the start of the slave trade. It is essential to realize that the importance given to music and dance in Africa was reflected among black people in America in the songs they sang, in their dancing, and at their folk gatherings. As such, every aspect of jazz, blues, and gospel music is African to some degree. Work songs and the related prison songs are precursors of the blues. One can assume that primitive forms of pre-blues appeared around 1885, mostly in the Deep South and predominantly in the state of Mississippi. However, it was several more years before the famous AAB twelve-bar structure appeared, and when it did, one of its leading practitioners was Charley Patton.

Keywords:   African American Music, black American music, slave trade, work songs, prison songs, jazz, blues, gospel music, Mississippi, Charley Patton

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