Hip-hop and Jazz Music

Hip-hopand Jazz Music

Hip-hopand jazz are two music genre invented by African Americans(Blanchard,34).Jazz music came into view in the form of self-regulating fashionablemusical styles, connected by ordinary ties of African American andEuropean American (Gridley, 12). On the other hand, (Blount, par2)describes, hip-hop music as a music type characterized by stylizedmusical rhythms that normally go along with rapping (rhythmic speechchanting).The two types of music are closely knit that some peopletend to view hip-hop as the younger version of jazz, for the moderngeneration. However, at a close examination and consideration severalfactors, the two music genres are different.

Thesisstatement: Despitetheir various similarities, hip-hop and jazz are two music genresthat have distinct characteristics and features.

Oneof the primary differences between hip-hop and jazz is their origins.Although the two type of music emerged in the United States, jazz`sbirthplace is New Orleans, and its first appearance was in thenineteenth century (Gridley, 18). Initially, jazz was played duringfuneral events but with time, it paved its way into local bars andclubs. By World War 1, Jazz music had become one of the popular musicgenres. On the other hand, hip-hop originated in the 1970s in NewYork. It was a common music genre in the playgrounds and schoolcompetition grounds of Bronx (Blanchard,42).Hip-hop music was used by young African American generation as ameans of expressing emotions and opinions regarding various issuesaffecting their lives during those times.

Anotherdifference between hip-hop and jazz is the utilization of creativity.According to Blount,bothhip-hop and jazz use a high level of creativity but in the case ofjazz, creativity is the key feature of the entire music piece (par,6). Creativity in jazz is so pronounced to an extent that a singlesinger will add variations and try to make the same performance asunique as possible in each performance. On the other hand,improvisation is mainly utilized in freestyle hip-hop, which is justone of the subgenres of the hip-hop music (Blount,par 7).In contrast to jazz, hip-hop musicians tend to lay emphasis on theuse of poetry and rhyme rather than creativity.

Onefeature that distinguishes hip-hop and jazz music is their dancingstyles. According to Gridley, jazz dancing style is archetypal fullof fun, energy and class. On the other hand, the earliest dancingstyles of hip-hop were characterized with vigorous steps with thefeet while standing (22). With time, the dancing style became morecomplex, and dancers would dance with both hands and feet on thefloor or hands on the floor with the feet in the air (Blanchard,45). Despite the fact that jazz has been one of the most competitivedance styles for decades, hip-hop dance is becoming more popular,with so many youngsters enrolling for training in studios. Accordingto Blount, even though jazz came into the picture first, hip-hop hasgained more popularity (par 9). The author argues that hip-hop is notjust a music genre anymore, but some kind of a socio-culturalmovement. Currently, hip-hop is influencing how the young generationspeaks, dresses and dances. The slang language common among African-Americans is associated with hip-hop music.


Despitethe fact many people tend to view jazz and hip-hop as two musicgenres born of the same mother, this essay has documented enoughevidence to validate the argument that two music genre are different.Hip-hop originates from Bronx, New York while Jazz originates fromNew Orleans. Jazz emphasizes the use of creativity while hip-hopmusic primarily relies on poetry and rhyme to enhance its quality.Jazz dancing style is full of fun and energy while hip-hop ischaracterized by the popular break dance. Despite the fact that jazzis older than hip-hop, the latter has gained more popularity, and ithas become a cultural movement impacting on various social aspects ofthe current young generation of African-Americans.


Blanchard,Becky. &quotThe Social Significance of Rap &amp Hip-Hop Culture.&quotJournalof Poverty &amp Prejudice, Spring(1999).

BlountEricka . WhereJazz meets Hip-Hop music,1998. Retrieved from: http://jazztimes.com/articles/21120-where-jazz-meets-hip-hop

Gridley,Mark C.&nbspConciseGuide to Jazz,fourth edition. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson/Prentice Hall(2004).