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Music, we all listen to it today. The twenties was the birth place of great music. Music in the Twenties was a huge thing and was one of the biggest ways to enjoy entertainment. Music included dancing, many musicians, styles, and instruments. There were many music styles in the 1920's. One big one was Jazz. This period was also called the Jazz Age. Dance is popular all over the world. In dance, you can either Tango, Shimmy, Waltz, or even dance the Charleston. In dance, it may just seem that someone is just moving in a fluent motion, but it isn't like that. Dance is full of steps, kicks, leg pumps, and confusing step motions. Dancing may seem challenging at first, but learning it will make you want to be an expert on it. With dancing and music there has to be musicians. The 20's had a great assortment of them. In the Twenties there was a vast variety of instruments. Some instruments were new and others became very popular. The brass family had the instruments that were used the most. Hope you enjoy the wonderful world of music from " The Roaring Twenties".Music, we all listen to it today. The twenties was the birth place of great music. Music in the Twenties was a huge thing and was one of the biggest ways to enjoy entertainment. Music included dancing, many musicians, styles, and instruments. There were many music styles in the 1920's. One big one was Jazz. This period was also called the Jazz Age. Dance is popular all over the world. In dance, you can either Tango, Shimmy, Waltz, or even dance the Charleston. In dance, it may just seem that someone is just moving in a fluent motion, but it isn't like that. Dance is full of steps, kicks, leg pumps, and confusing step motions. Dancing may seem challenging at first, but learning it will make you want to be an expert on it. With dancing and music there has to be musicians. The 20's had a great assortment of them. In the Twenties there was a vast variety of instruments. Some instruments were new and others became very popular. The brass family had the instruments that were used the most. Hope you enjoy the wonderful world of music from " The Roaring Twenties".

There were many styles of music in the 1920's, also known as " The Roaring Twenties". The main style of music was Jazz. This time period was also called " The Jazz Age". Almost everybody listened to jazz at the time. "This "movement" in which jazz music grew in popularity by immense standards in the U.S., also influenced other parts of the world." ( Team C005846, The Jazz Age and Louis Armstrong). One big name during this time period who played jazz was the famous Louis Armstrong. I'm sure that you have heard the name. He is one of the greatest jazz musicans ever! The Hot Five ( later named the Hot Seven after getting 2 more members) were a great band. They were started by "Satchmo" ( Louis Armstrong). Did you know the piano was used towards Jazz. That was the famous Jazz musician, Duke Ellington, main instrument.
Blues also was a big part of the 1920s music. Blues was right behind jazz as most popular music during the 1920s. This period could easily have been called ' The Blues Age". Many blues singers were women. This style is what most women sang. They sang about lost love, love to come, and just bad days. Blues was part of the African American culture. This music was called "race music" for marketing stratagies so they could sell music by black for black and by white for white, respectively. Did you know that Duke Ellington used blues towards his Jazz music?
( Wikipedia , blues).
After World War I, there were many African Americans in search of better jobs and moved to the northern part of the United States. Moving north, they brought thier culture with them. The works of African Americans especially in music, rose greatly in popularity! Now African American music became quite popular. As I said before blues music was part of the African American style. One African American blues singer was Ma Rainey, "The Mother of Blues" ( Calliope Film Resource, The Classic Blues and the women who sang them).
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It is very true that styles of music were a main part of the Roaring Twenties. Dance starts to follow under this topic, because a specific type of dance could fall under a specific type of style or genre of music. For example, the jitterbug is danced to something of a jazzy tune. The mood of the dance also gives you a hint on what style of music it is. Dancing was also a way, and still is a way, to get out emotions inside of you and share them with others. You need music in order to dance. Dancing was a huge part of the 1920's, but could not be done without styles, songs, or the instruments of music.
Music was a sensational hit in the 1920's, and dancing was a big part of this hit. One of the popular dances was the Charleston. The Charleston was one of the most popular dances in the 1920's. To start this dance, all you have to do is kick. Just like if you are playing soccer. Then, just step back with your right foot. After that, all you have to do is kick back with your the opposite foot. Then, step forward with your left foot. If you're dancing the Charleston like a pro already, you should be right back where you started. Next, kick forward with your right foot. And then, you repeat the whole thing again. This is only the first part of the Charleston. If you would like, try moving your arms around. When you start the kicking step in this dance, you start to move your left arm in front of you, and your right arm behind you. Now do the same thing using opposite arms. Hold your arms right in front of you and bend your elbows into a 90-degree angle. Swing your arms in a circular motion. First, do it towards the right, and then you do it in the opposite direction. Put both of these movements together and you have mastered the Charleston. (How To Dance The Charleston 1).
Another great dance in the 20's was the Shimmy. The Shimmy is a belly dance. It is really quite entertaining. It is actually an Egyptian dance. You dance this by first having the right posture. When belly dancing, or in other words, doing the shimmy, it's very important to be conscious of your body at all times during the dance. Stand up, and put your feet on the ground about a foot apart from each other. Focusing on your hip area, bring your shoulders back and firm up your stomach and buttocks. Stick your chest out and up, and put your hand down to your side. To shimmy in belly dancing, you need to take advantage of the power in your knees. Bend your knees slightly, and then raise them up and down quickly like you're running. Be sure that you're feet don't leave the ground! This will move your hips back and forth, creating a shimmy effect. Be sure not to start off too quickly or you're probably going to hurt yourself. When you first practice this dance, you should do it in slow motion until you develop the correct movement. Be sure to pay close attention to your form. Your left knee should control your left hip, and the same goes for the right side. Once you get a more fluent motion, try to speed up the process. It should be almost seamless in movement, and your knees will pump as quickly as they can go. (How To Shimmy Hips Belly Dancing 1) Follow these steps and you'll be shimmying like a pro in no time! Just be sure you don't hurt yourself!
Guys and girls in the "Roaring 20's" would usually go to dance marathons or dance competitions in their spare time. Well, what would they wear? The ladies who went to dance in the 1920's wore skirts. Skirts were long between 1920-1923, but then in 1924, skirts became much shorter. "Evening dresses were generally sleeveless, with deep V or U-shaped necklines." Women would also have decorations on their dresses. Some materials used would be fringe, feathers, and beading, which would at some times, take up the whole dress. Focusing on the face, women in America, as well as all over the world, had short hair. The other women with long hair simply put it back behind their ears. In other words, it would be put into a knot at the nape of the neck. With dark eyes, red lips, and powdered skin, make up was very visual. Dance shoes would be small-healed at the time. Now, men would dress up for dance occasions as well, but they would not get as dressed up. Men preferred tailcoats during the 1920's, being after World War II. They were worn with white waistcoats and ties. If the occasion was at night, they would wear black or midnight blue tuxedos. Tuxedos had either rolled collars faced in silk or notched collars" (Arbor 1) . That's pretty much it in the fashion category.
Another great thing in the 1920's was dance marathons. They were mainly popular in 1923. People would go and take their spouse and dance for as long as they possibly could. Some would last for over 45 hours! The police were starting to get very concerned though. Some people would come out of a marathon with swollen ankles, bad backs and even bleeding feet. One women crossed the line when she had a siezure as a result of losing 21 pounds dancing in a marathon. Officials were then tired of it at that point. They stopped the marathon. Follwing that incident, they let the courts decide whether these marathons should be illegal or not. (Stewart 23). That is dance in the Roaring 20's!

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With great music there had to be great musicians. The many genres of music made for a large assortment of musical talent. Many of them are still famous today. I'm sure you'll recognize some of them!
The man who started the Jazz Age was Joe "King" Oliver and his band. His band was very popular during the early 1920's. Everybody loved this great cornet player. "King" Oliver also helped to make Louis Armstrong popular since Armstrong was in Oliver's band (The Twentieth Century The Roaring Twenties and an Unsettled Peace (1919-1929) 87-89). The Jazz Age had started, and even better musicians would follow Joe "King" Oliver.
One of the greatest jazz musicians was Louis Armstrong. He played the trumpet and sang with a distinctive gravely voice. He led two groups called The Hot Five and The Hot Seven. These two groups made sound recordings in the 1920's. Other jazz musicians were Paul Whiteman and Bix Beiderbecke. "Paul Whiteman and his group presented the first jazz concert in 1924" (Ammons 11). His jazz orchestra was very popular. This is why he was called "The King of Jazz" ("Paul Whiteman"). Bix Beiderbecke was a great cornet player and pianist. He was also part of Paul Whiteman's orchestra ("Bix Beiderbecke"). Another great jazz musician was Duke Ellington. He was an excellent composer, pianist, and bandleader. He was very influential in music ("Duke Ellington"). Another great piano player and composer of this time was George Gershwin. He created many hit songs. He also created Broadway shows. He enjoyed a very successful career (Craats 41). These musicians helped push jazz into the national spotlight.
Blues was also popular in the 1920's. Bessie Smith was a great blues singer. She sang a style of blues known as urban blues. This means that she was accompanied by a rhythm section and other instruments. Bessie Smith was the most famous of all blues singers (Ammons 3). Another great blues singer was Ma Rainey. She was called the "Mother of Blues." She also influenced Bessie Smith ("Gertrude "Ma" Rainey born Gertrude Pridjett (1886-1939)"). These singers greatly impacted blues.
Out of all these performers Al Jolson was the most famous. He was a singer and influenced many great singers after him. He was a great Broadway performer, and he earned many awards. He also helped to introduce African-American music to the general public by performing in blackface. "Between 1911 and 1928, Jolson had nine sell-out Winter Garden shows in a row, more than 80 hit records, and 16 national and international tours" ("Al Jolson"). Jolson would build runways from the stage extending to the audience and run out to the audience. This thrilled all the audience members ("Al Jolson"). He was one of the greatest performers of all time.

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How could anyone play music if not for the instruments? Instruments played a very important role in music in the Twenties, just like they do today. Drums and brass instruments became popular at this time. There were many instruments used that you might be familiar with. There might also be some instruments that you aren't so familiar with. The twenties was a time that jazz was really big. The trumpet was one of the most popular instruments then, almost like the guitar now.
There were many different instruments used during the Roaring Twenties. Besides many different instruments being used there were also some new instruments that became popular and there were new instrument companies. One music company that was established in 1920 was the Lenox Instrument Company. An instrument made popular in the twenties includes "The Banjo-lin"(banjo-lin 1). Banjo-lins were sometimes called Manjo-lin because they were the size of a mandolin but the instrument itself was a banjo.
Many brass instruments were used. These include trumpets, tubas, alto horns, sousaphones, trombones, cornets, and the timpani. Also new instruments were introduced to the drum set. These add-ons included tom-toms and hi hat cymbals. The trumpet, the drum set, the mandolin, and the Banjo-lin were some of the most popular instruments during the 1920's.
Guitars were also used during this time. Clarinets were used, but not as often. The saxophone wasn't a big part of jazz before about 1925. There were six types of saxophones used in music at this time. The musicians who played drums were not allowed to use their full drumsets during most of the 1920s. "Drummers had to become subtle percussionists, using woodblocks, cowbells, cymbals, and sometimes washboards." (The Pacesetters In New York Jazz Of The 1920s).




References


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Ammons, D.M.A., Mark. "Jazz Moves From New Orleans to Chicago."American Popular Music. 1996.
Arbor, Ann. "Attire for 1920s And 1930s Events." vintagedance.com. 1999-2000. Grand Traditions Vintage Dance Acadamy. 22 Jan 2009 <http://www.vintagedance.com/dress-20s.htm>.




"Bix Beiderbecke." Wikipedia. 2009. 21 Jan 2009 <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bix_Beiderbecke>.
Blues." Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia//. 25 Jan 2009, 20:03 UTC. 26 Jan 2009 http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Blues&oldid=266373329


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