History of Ragtime

Easily defined ragtime is known as an early mixture of African, African-American, and European musical elements. Ragtime has an unending set of variations with added embellishments. Known as the hottest musical rage of late sass’s to early 1 ass’s, ragtime brought together established techniques and incorporated them with European march format. This fused syncopation influences from Africans with harmonic ways of African Americans and Europeans.

Rhythmic syncopation was brought Into American homes through, at first, Minstrel shows, then by ragtime by IANA “professors” who were usually black pianist who played for social functions, dances, bars, and ill-repute homes. Another way this was made popular was by cutting contests. These contests would allow “professors” to outplay one another by adding embellishments that were Improvised on spot reflecting on what was later made known as jazz. A solo pianist, to this day, still uses this technique in the Jazz culture.

Scott Joplin is one of the major creators who is given almost sole credit for he then new music but was also overlooked due to his color by biased white scholars limiting him as “only’ a ragtime composer. Another popular ragtime composer was John Philip Souse. Souse was known for using marches, along with minstrel and ragtime pieces in his bands standard shows. His popularity through his works The Stars and Stripes Forever, played every Fourth of July, The Washington Post, used by American military bands, and The Liberty Bell March, which was the theme song for Monty Python’s Flying Circus, created Imitators all over.

With musicians reforming already established music by adding their own ideas and improvisations Into the works Jazz was born. 2. The basic forms and techniques used in blues music lead back to Africa and Into America through slavery. Blues music uses certain notes bent or embellished. Blues music used a formal structure of 12-bar which Is most commonly used in Jazz. The basis of musical maturity of blues styles is done by imitating vocals on a horn. Work songs sung by African slaves would use a technique called call and response.

They would take the physical rhythm of their work along with one singer who creates a musical line (the call) that would then be repeated by other singers (the response). The repeated lines were similar to a blues format. Signifying songs which were used to carry a message of social significance made way on plantations mainly. These songs then made way into minstrel shows in the nineteenth century. Without the basic forms found in the musical patterns of signifying songs the blues known today would not exist.

Also, religious music in the black gospel community used the call and response format by using European hymns and incorporating them with African musical techniques. Choirs and congregation make textures as the preacher delivers the sermon as well as sometimes singing followed by praise from choir or congregation using words or melodic moan. 3. Minstrelsy carried out a lot of stereotypes that appeared in America. Minstrel shows 1 OFF biased white men would put on makeup known as “blackjack” when imitating the Wyandotte beats of the black society.

This style of American humor and music popularized the overlooked quality of the music. These types of shows created a racial bias that is still recognized today. Eventually after the Civil War even black men were putting on the makeup and Joining in on the performances. This created a comic image of pseudo-Negroes throughout ragtime. The music itself in the shows used dissemination of syncopation as a basic rhythm structure which is used as a basis in most Jazz.

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