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The Blues

A brief history of the Blues

Michelle Reichert

on 6 December 2012

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Transcript of The Blues

What is the Blues? While the lyrics to blues music often deals with personal troubles, the music goes far beyond self-pity. The blues is also about overcoming hard times, saying what you feel, getting rid of frustration, letting your hair down and simply having fun. Where does the
Blues come from? The blues has deep roots in African-American history. The blues originated on Southern plantations in the 19th Century. It was invented by slaves, ex-slaves, and the descendants of slaves.

African-American share-croppers sang as they toiled in cotton and vegetable fields. The music evolved from African spirituals and chants, work songs, field hollers, revivalist hymns, and country dance music. A Brief History of the Blues When you think about the blues, you usually think about misfortune, betrayal, and regret. You lose your job, you get the blues. Your girlfriend dumps you, you get the blues. Your dog dies, you get the blues. The blues was sung and most often played on acoustic guitar (often with a slide), harmonica, and sometimes piano Blues Instruments There are many types of Blues music: Delta Blues:
The original type of Blues music from the Mississippi Delta region.
This type of blues features vocal repetition that frequently included call and response lyrical framing.
Artists from this style include: Charley Patton, Leadbelly, and Robert Johnson. Chicago Blues:
Delta Blues musicians brought their music north to the Chicago area.
This style of Blues sees the addition of electric guitars, drums, and sometimes horns to it's music.
Artists included: Muddy Waters, Willie Dixon, and Howlin' Wolf. Texas Blues, Memphis Blues, and St. Louis Blues:
When the blues moved to the cities and other locales, it took on various regional characteristics.
They used the same instrumentation as the Chicago style.
Artists included: Bone T Walker and Lightnin' Hopkins. The Blues grew up in the Mississippi Delta, just up the river from New Orleans, the birthplace of Jazz.

Unlike Jazz, the blues didn't spread
out until the 1930's and 40's.

A decade or so later, the blues gave birth to Rhythm n' Blues, and Rock n' Roll. Blues Rock:
Originated in the early 1960's, this genre was directly influenced by the Delta and Chicago blues.
While they copied the lyrical styling and high energy of earlier players, they also cranked up both the volume and the beat.
Famous artists include: The Rolling Stones, ZZ Top, The Doors, and Led Zeppelin, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Jimi Hendrix, and the White Stripes. 12 Bar Blues Blues music, in it's most basic form, is only 12 bars long and is only made up of 3 chords: The 1st, 4th, and 5th chords in a scale. The Rolling Stones Led Zeppelin Robert Johnson White Stripes Matt Anderson The 3-chord progression used in blues music not only influenced Rock music, but also influenced everything that came after it, including the pop music that we listen to today. So What? African Spiritual Work Song Slide Guitar & Harmonica
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