African American music is the basis for mainly all American musical genres. Although this subject has been debated heavily by scholars for years, it is clear that without blues, gospel, or jazz, much of the popular forms of music that we value today would not exist.
Antonin Dvorak, a well respected 19th century Czech composer, even predicted the importance of black music long before it flourished and became a force within American culture. In a New York Herald interview, Dvorak stated that “In the Negro melodies of America, I discover all that is needed for a great and noble school of music. They are pathétic, tender, passionate, melancholy, solemn, religious, bold, merry, gay or what you will. It is music that suits itself to any mood or purpose. There is nothing in the whole range of composition that cannot be supplied with themes from this source. The American musician understands these tu
Although, Dvorak presented a rather discriminatory and sympathetic perspective of Black music, more specifically of spirituals, blues, and other African American musical elements he was exposed to at that time, there is no denying that he saw the importance of African folk music, which has continued to play a crucial role in various American musical genres.
That was one of the reasons why I decided to name my blog, Roots, Rhythm, and Rhyme, due to the fact that Black music is the foundation of American popular music.
Black music is the root of all American music, rhythm is the foundation of African music, and rhyme represents hip hop, which is one of the most popular and global forms of African American music.
My goal for this blog is to present social discussions about Black music and introduce others to new artists who are furthering the scope of African American music.
I hope to share my insight on this music, and take you along on my journey as I continue to learn more about the roots, rhythm, and rhyme of American culture.
Veronica Grandison is a freelance music writer from Detroit. She earned a Bachelors degree in Communications from the University of Michigan-Dearborn in 2011. She is currently a graduate student at Wayne State University majoring in Library and Information Science.
Her work has been featured in Metro Times, Real Detroit Weekly, Model D, The Jazz Line and IXITI.
She is also a board member of the Detroit Sound Conservancy, a new organization dedicated to preserving Detroit Music. Her current research is focused on the Graystone International Jazz Museum and women in jazz.
Her work on Detroit hip hop is published in the book A Detroit Anthology, which features articles, poems, essays, and photos about the city of Detroit. The book came out May 2014.
To purchase the book, CLICK HERE.