American Music: Blues and Rock 'n Roll Analytical Essay by Jay Writtings LLC

American Music: Blues and Rock 'n Roll
A discussion of the history of rock 'n roll music and blues music and their place in the development of American music.
# 117891 | 2,408 words | 8 sources | MLA | 2009 | US

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This paper examines the history of blues and rock music and how modern rock and pop have devolved away from their blues origins. The writer explains how blues music was born from African rhythms and the tragic atmosphere of slavery. Music was improvised on the spot to encompass the task or event at hand, and blues music thus became a combination of an awareness of the brutality of life coupled with a consciousness of its moments of grace. The exact birth of rock music is more difficult to define and started as a mix of the raw emotion of blues, the folk ideals of country music, and the innovative style of jazz. The writer traces its evolution through the folk revolution, the British (or Beatles) revolution, the 70s and 80s, and on to the present day, where it has lost much of its immediacy, honesty and emotion.

From the Paper:

"The earliest form of American black music was a blend of their own African traditions and the missionary zeal of the Europeans. During the peak of the slave trade many Christian missionaries took it upon themselves to convert the African pagans into good Christians. The musical result of this was the development of what was loosely termed "Negro spirituals." This music was a combination of native African rhythms and European liturgical music. It mingled the diatonic scale of European music with the pentatonic scale of African music--a development that would mark all later black music. Spirituals were the first example of African music adapted to the social environment of the New World."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Cotto, Massimo, Enciclopedia del Blues, Farina Press, 1994.
  • Gillett, Charlie, The Sound of the City, Viking, 1970.
  • Hardy, Phil, and Dave Laing, Faber Companion to 20th Century Popular Music, Faber, 1990.
  • Southern, Eileen, The Music of Black Americans, Norton & Co., 1971.
  • Tawa, Nicholas, American Popular Song 1866-1910, Schirmer, 1983.

Cite this Analytical Essay:

APA Format

American Music: Blues and Rock 'n Roll (2009, December 23) Retrieved September 28, 2023, from

MLA Format

"American Music: Blues and Rock 'n Roll" 23 December 2009. Web. 28 September. 2023. <>