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Explain the difference between spirituals, the blues, and ragtime.
spiritual, a religious folk song folk song, music of anonymous composition, transmitted orally. The theory that folk songs were originally group compositions has been modified in recent studies. ..... Click the link for more information. [ of American origin, particularly associated with African-American Protestants of the southern United States. The African-American spiritual, characterized by
syncopation, polyrhythmic structure, and the pentatonic scale of five whole tones, is, above all, a deeply emotional song. The words are most often related to biblical passages, but the predominant effect is of patient, profound melancholy. The spiritual is directly related to the sorrow songs that were the source material of the blues. Blues is based around the 1, 4, and 5 chords (usually all with dominant 7's, a half-step lower than the major seven... this breaks away from classical theory by crossing between modes), and what makes the real "bluesy" sound in a blues solo is that there is a mix between the major and minor sounds... It's major difference from ragtime and jazz is that there is not as much classical theory* involved. Ragtime is a precursor to jazz and is sometimes even thought of as classical, it follows the classical theory more strictly than jazz... It's where the idea of swing 8th's really started to take hold, but I really don't know very much about it other than that. Jazz comes directly from classical theory, and most great jazz musicians have a solid understanding of classical theory, but the point of jazz is really to experiment with ideas that break away from classical theory and see how they sound (usually going for outstandingly "groovy", "funky" sounds) and resolve... Improvisation is what makes jazz "jazz", and what makes jazz interesting and enjoyable. ]
Expert answered|phobicism|Points 1420|
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Asked 6/3/2010 11:43:31 AM
Updated 6/4/2010 5:14:02 AM
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Spirituals were a passionate song form, that "convey(ed) to listeners the same feeling of rootlessness and misery" as the blues.[3] Spirituals, however, were less specifically concerning the performer, instead about the general loneliness of mankind, and were more figurative than direct in their lyrics.[3] Despite these differences, the two forms are similar enough that they can not be easily separated — many spirituals would probably have been called blues had that word been in wide use at the time.

Ragtime (alternately spelled Rag-time)[1] is an original musical genre which enjoyed its peak popularity between 1897 and 1918.[2] Its main characteristic trait is its syncopated, or "ragged", rhythm.[2] It began as dance music in the red-light districts of American cities such as St. Louis and New Orleans years before being published as popular sheet music for piano.[3][4] It was a modification of the march made popular by John Philip Sousa, with additional polyrhythms coming from African music.[5] The ragtime composer Scott Joplin became famous through the publication in 1899 of the "Maple Leaf Rag" and a string of ragtime hits that followed, although he was later forgotten by all but a small, dedicated community of ragtime aficionados until the major ragtime revival in the early 1970s.[6][7] For at least 12 years after its publication, the "Maple Leaf Rag" heavily influenced subsequent ragtime composers with its melody lines, harmonic progressions or metric patterns
Ragtime originated in African American music in the late 19th century, descending from the jigs and march music marches played by black bands.[12] By the start of the 20th century it became widely popular throughout North America and was listened and danced to, performed, and written by people of many different subcultures. A distinctly American musical style, ragtime may be considered a synthesis of African syncopation and European classical music, especially the marches made popular by John Philip Sousa.

Blues is the name given to both a musical form and a music genre created primarily within the African-American communities in the Deep South of the United States at the end of the 19th century from spirituals, work songs, field hollers, shouts and chants, and rhymed simple narrative ballads.[1] The blues form ubiquitous in jazz, rhythm and blues, and rock and roll is characterized by specific chord progressions—the twelve-bar blues chord progressions being the most common—and the blue note, notes that for expressive purposes are sung or played flattened or gradually bent (minor 3rd to major 3rd) in relation to the pitch of the major scale.

The blues genre is based on the blues form but possesses other characteristics such as specific lyrics, bass lines and instruments. Blues can be subdivided into several subgenres ranging from country to urban blues that were more or less popular during different periods of the 20th century. Best known are the Delta, Piedmont, Jump and Chicago blues styles. World War II marked the transition from acoustic to electric blues and the progressive opening of blues music to a wider audience. In the 1960s and 1970s, a hybrid form called blues rock evolved.

The term "the blues" refers to the "blue devils", meaning melancholy and sadness; an early use of the term in this sense is found in George Colman's one-act farce Blue Devils (1798).[2] Though the use of the phrase in African American music may be older, it has been attested to since 1912, when Hart Wand's "Dallas Blues" became the first copyrighted blues composition.[3][4] In lyrics the phrase is often used to describe a depressed mood.[5
Added 6/4/2010 5:14:02 AM
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