Friday, February 1, 2019

Black History Month honored by The Metamora Herald, The Good, the Bad, and the Beauty

In the 20th century, we saw many changes and technological advances. One very prominent change that we all enjoy is the revolution and evolution of music. Music changed from ragtime, jazz, blues, swing, rock and roll, and hip hop, just to name a few. Throughout all the decades, new fads and dance crazes swept through the nation. Music followed the times of the world and also set new trends. Giving hopefulness to those suffering through the depression and war. Music made life a little easier for us all, but there were also times when it made little difference in how we treated musicians of color.

Sad but true, many of the artists of the 1920's etc... were black and could hardly get their music recorded. (Some of the artists were more lucky than others with this endeavor.) Which was a shame because the radio had become popular and it was the best way at that time to get your song heard by the masses. Another advancement of the era was the record player. Recording your music to record was reserved for an elite group. Many musicians were not allowed to play in certain clubs because of segregation, and if they could play at those clubs, they were not allowed to eat or drink there. Certain parts of America were not safe for black musicians. This also made it more difficult to get a following of fans.

However, times did change for the better and music segregation finally came to an end, but it took years and a lot of hard work. Take a look through the decades of music and you will see for yourself that the black community largely contributed to the music of those times and of course the music of today. Rock and Roll was a large stepping stone/obstacle for black musicians. Little Richard and Chuck Berry put rock and roll on the map, but white musicians also did their songs and stole the popularity along with them. Until Motown Records came along and black artists were no longer turned away for their skin color.

Tamla Records was actually the first [1] Motown label, debuting in 1959, and the first of the company's labels to hit No. 1. Tamla's "Please Mr. Postman," by the Marvelettes, topped the Hot 100 on Dec. 11, 1961. This is still a good song to this day. 

Next time you are listening to music be grateful for all the past musicians who helped knock down walls and pave a road to success for future musicians. Thank you for all you had to go through to get us all music freedom. And all that jazz......

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