The following is information to help you prepare your students for their upcoming Let Freedom Swing concert.
Jazz and Democracy
Jazz grew out of the African-American community in turn of the century New Orleans. It is a mingling of the musical expressions of all people who came to the United States, by choice or by force, as well those already living in America. This concert will illustrate the fundamentals of jazz and the ideals of American democracy through the lens of America’s greatest and most democratic art form.
Jazz and the Great Migration
Huge numbers of African-Americans moved from the south to the industrial north in the decades following World War I. In cities such as Chicago, Washington D.C., and New York City, African-American writers, artists, musicians, and political thinkers emerged at the forefront of American culture. This concert will focus on the innovations and achievements of this era, and the significance of the Great Migration in the development of jazz.
Jazz and Civil Rights
The 1950s and 1960s were a time of social and political upheaval in America. This was reflected in the music of the era, and inspired some of the most passionate and emotional performances and compositions in the history of jazz. This concert will demonstrate how jazz can serve as a form of protest and as an instrument for social change.