Tuesday, 11 February 2020

Evolution of Music Genres

Music has evolved over the years. Based on the era and the different factors relating to that, people have turned to music to let their feelings be known to the world. Whether it is lyrics or the sound of instruments, every aspect of music has changed throughout the times. Let us learn some facts about different genres of Music and how they evolved throughout different eras.

Blues
Blues is one of the oldest known genres of music. Born in the U.S with a deep roots in African American history. Invented by slaves, ex-slaves and the descendants of slaves, it started as songs they used to sing as they worked in order to lift their spirits up. The music was an outlet for them to express themselves, they would sing about their misfortunes and sometimes it was just about having fun. Lyrics played an important role as it would talk about their personal hardships or just about their day-to-day life. They would sing it as if they are narrating it to somebody with repeating lines and focus on certain words. However, as guitars came in, it changed as the years went by, starting with very swing-style chord play and use of 12 bars - lot of artist started introducing lead guitars. With distinct melody lines and using the same technique as the vocals, they also started repeating certain patterns and added significance in certain notes with genius use of dynamics. This changed the entire outlook of how guitar is used as an instrument. Now elements of blues have influenced a lot of different styles, very first variations were the birth of 'Rhythm n Blues' and 'Rock n Roll'. Now it is welcomed in all styles of music and is one of the foundations of modern music. 



Rock
Although we associate rock with the modern giants like Guns 'n' Roses or AC/DC , the way it started out was quite different. Beatles, Cream and Pink Floyd were all innovators of this genre and yet everyone perceived it in a very different way. It was an era of innovations and experiments where artists were not worried about what the audience perception of them might be. Rock has been influenced by a lot of elements in blues. It has drawn inspiration from Rhythm n Blues, Rock n Roll, Folk music, Jazz and a lot of different elements. Rock is one of the most diverse genres that there is  - where different artists started taking the genre on different pathways. Beatles, was the pop rock band of those times and that, made them so popular as a band. Cream, were what we now call mainstream rock with guitar leads, drums and electric bass as the showrunner. Whereas, Pink Floyd were experimental and delved into different soundscapes. Then came Jimi Hendrix who basically discovered distortion in guitar and completely changed the rock scene. From there, more hard-rock bands began to appear like Led Zeppelin, Deep Purple, The Who and so on. Also during the same time another heavier genre appeared which called itself as heavy metal with raging distortion, super punchy riffs and vocals that were unheard of during those times.

Pop
Pop music is one of the most subjective genres of all and that is because there is no particular aspect that defines it. It is called Pop because the songs were popular at the time of their release. Michael Jackson is called the King of Pop but you don't hear many influences of that in the current pop music scene. So we can say, pop music is a trend music that basically follows the age and era of the music scene. However, the vocals is based around a lot of romantic gestures but sometimes they also do give out sensitive messages about politics and the way of the society as well. So, if the vocalist sounds like the star of the show, you are probably hearing pop music. There have been legends in the pop music scene. What you call pop music can vary from person to person but as long as it is good music, who cares about what genre it is based upon.

HIP HOP
Hip-hop was more of a culture in the United States which was defined by Rapping, DJ-ing, Break-dancing and Graffiti-making. Musically, it started out as rapping which you can define as vocal delivery with rhythmic speech and rhymes which often included lyrics associated with personal experiences. Then the rapping was accompanied by music which can be associated with sampling beats, rhythmic bass lines and sometimes beatboxing. As the years went by, you can now hear rapping in Rock music, RnB and other genres of Music.

EDM
The music of today’s era. Electronic Dance Music is the go to music in any Parties, Bars or Concerts attracting big crowds. As the name suggests, music is electronically composed on a software often defined by loud bass lines and  groovy beats, usually to keep the crowd on their feet dancing and enjoying the occasion. They usually keep different tracks in sequence and swap between tracks seamlessly. However, many instrumentalist and different genres of Music have started including EDM concepts into their songs as well.


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Reference : 
  1. https://www.allaboutjazz.com/a-brief-history-of-the-blues-by-ed-kopp.php
  2. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rock_music
  3. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hip_hop_music
  4. https://www.lafilm.edu/blog/brief-history-edm/

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