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Music in the United States

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Essay title: Music in the United States

With the start of the 20th century music began to play a huge part in the rapidly maturing United States. The music of the 20th century was not only there to entertain the people but it was more. It was used now to influence and manipulate the listeners, the artists had a goal to entertain and to enlighten the listener so that they could get their messages heard. Music is one of the best ways to advertise and to expand ideas, and many artists knew this. Music rapidly influenced every Americans life. It was in their homes, cars, bars, theaters, movies, elevators and countless other places. Music was everywhere it defined what every American loved and worked for, it gave people hope and joy, as well as bringing out every other emotion there is in people. Music was around during the bad times as well as the good, when people were down, there were songs they could relate to, and when they were happy there were songs they could sing and dance to. Many people don't think of how much music brightens and amplifies many things, such as movies; have you ever noticed how the directors always have a song or tune for every part of the movie bringing out just the right emotion in you. Radio, what good would radio be today if music weren't here. There were a few major turning points in music history during the century.

A couple of decades after the turn of the century music started to work its way into the homes of people and the invention of the record player was a big advance and people no longer needed an entire orchestra to listen to the music they loved. People still used pianos and various instruments to conduct their own music though. It was often a popular form entertainment people could gather around the musician playing the piano or any other instruments and sing along and dance. Music was becoming more and more popular.

In the 1920's the big bands had already hit the music scene and were a popular choice for many listeners, but new forms of it were branching, swing and jazz were becoming very popular. Although, it was new to the people in the United States it had mostly emerged long before then with the African-Americans, who since the days of slavery had been making there own forms of folk music. Such forms as ragtime, fife and drum bands, string bands and spirituals. Because racism was so high in the 1920's, Jazz was a radical idea many white people, who did not think that African-American music was any good. Despite the racism, though very high at the time, Jazz still exploded though out the United States. Jazz was mainly consisted of several trumpets, saxophones, and even string instruments supported by a deeper brass bass, piano and percussion. Jazz had a huge impact on the people of the early 1900's; it lessened the racism slightly opening people up to dance, which was considered an indecent act among many societies. African-American people also began to gain popularity with their smooth ability to improve the already great sound of Jazz. Such artists as Joe "King" Oliver and Louis Armstrong were huge and made a big impact on not only jazz, but also many people living in the U.S. at the time. Jazz paved the way for many more new innovative ideas for styles of American music.

After World War I was winding down and Jazz was hitting a peak, anther new kind of music was once again emerging. Rock ‘n' Roll was another form of African-American music merged with white-American music. In 1955 rock took of with Bill Haley's song "Rock Around the Clock". The American people loved it for it's exciting, heavy beat and it's hypnotic power over people causing them to dance. Rock was very popular among the younger crowds, especially with the teens. It related to the topics many young people were interested in; it had songs about school, cars and young love. Many teens in the United States at this time loved it because they could relate to what the songs were saying, although this sounds like an improvement on society, some people believed it brought out the worst in people. Parents of the children often thought it gave ideas of rebellion and sin. Later in the century rock really started to have a rebellious theme, it gave American teens incentive to disobey their parents, schools and any authority in general. It was often debated that the Rock ‘n' Roll contributed to juvenile delinquency, protest, and wide spread drug use.

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