Global Music and Jazz

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One of the most well-known art forms to have come out of the United States is jazz, a complex musical genre created due to creative harmonic improvisation (Pachet, 2012). Even though the term "Jazz" may still mean different things to different people after a century, jazz emerged outside of American society in New Orleans and is now one of the twentieth century's most enduring and influential musical phenomena. New Orleans was a cosmopolitan city with a racially equitable culture compared to other southern American towns. This led to blending of West African traditions with European harmonica roots, giving rise to several musical genres (Pachet, 2012). Syncopated rhythms and intricate harmonies set jazz music apart from other music popular in the late nineteenth century. As the "music center" of the country, New Orleans fostered the blues, ragtime, and improvisational music traditions, all of which helped to pave the way for jazz, a brand-new American musical genre (Pachet, 2012, p. 115). This essay examines the Montreal Worldwide Jazz Festival, a critical international jazz occasion that has emphasized jazz music's expansion and global appeal.

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Any type of music has distinctive components including melody, tempo, harmony, and tone. In contrast to other forms of literature where the tune is fixed, in jazz the melody is improvised, therefore it changes from presentation to presentation of the same song. Jazz melodies differ from those in other musical genres because they have broad melodic leaps and quick runs (Dannenberg, 2010). Jazz is also known for its intricate harmony; although other genres of music utilize chords with 3–4 notes, jazz uses chords with 5–6 notes. In addition, blue notes are added to the standard notes used in western harmonies in jazz. Ragtime rhythms are considered to have given rise to jazz.

In 1925, the finest jazz performance in France, Revue Niger, filled the streets of Paris with a fusion of jazz music and sexual dancing (Doktor, 2016). The Revue Niger was established on tolerance and symbolic transformation, despite some critics' links with the struggle against colonialism and European exoticism. The Hot Club of France was founded in 1932 by a group of jazz enthusiasts due to the rapid growth of jazz culture in Paris. The group included Jingo Reinhardt, who worked with Stéphane Grappelli to develop the brand-new, swing-influenced music known as Gypsy Jazz (Doktor, 2016). Jazz may have been abolished in France under the German occupation because the Germans considered it unclean and repulsive. During the middle Ages, great jazz performers flourished in France, most notably Django Reinhardt, who was recognized as one of the best French jazz musicians. The other musicians are Josephine Baker, Claude Bolling, Christian Jacob, Richard Galliano, Stéphane Grappelli, Michel Legrand, and Stéphane Grappelli (Doktor, 2016). The 1956 hit song "April in Paris" by Ella Fitzgerald charmed audiences worldwide.

The Montreal International Jazz Festival, also known as the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal, is held annually in Canada (Broudehoux & Bonin, 2020). Guinness World Records named it the largest jazz festival in the world in 2004. Up to 2 million people from around the world attend the 650 concerts and outdoor activities, typically featuring up to 3,000 performers from more than 30 nations. Over 20 locations, including concert halls, and indoor and outdoor arenas, host the event (Broudehoux & Bonin, 2020). Numerous jazz performers performed in the inaugural Monterey Jazz Festival, which took place in May 1980 and drew up to 12,000 visitors worldwide (Broudehoux & Bonin, 2020). This was the site of the Montreal Jazz Festival in the summer of 1979, when several musicians took the stage simultaneously. The event eventually grew and is now hosted on various sites to suit the rising number of guests.

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The biggest music festival in Canada is now the Event International de Jazz de Montréal, which hosts performances on both indoor and outdoor stages (Cummins‐Russell & Rantisi, 2012). The outdoor celebrations last all day, and several musical performances take place at the same time. Street musicians play in a range of musical genres all day long. Jazz performers sometimes perform in many sets, which causes the music to shift from one place to another. The event's organizers receive a long-term license to run a transient jealous radio station in Canada and put on a stunning mega show with a competition of hand-picked jazz bands and musicians (Cummins‐Russell & Rantisi, 2012). South American music, Dixieland African music, blues, and other jazz music are also featured in the performance's outdoor series. Short video series and documentaries introducing jazz performers and music are also accessible (Cummins‐Russell & Rantisi, 2012, p. 81). The international jazz festival, the centerpiece of Canada's most significant family vacation package, attracts tourists of all ages. The Canadian Tourism Commission aggressively promoted the event, which attracted up to 2.5 million people in 2018 (Cummins‐Russell & Rantisi, 2012).

The festival features a remarkable variety of music from many different genres and regular jazz music celebrations (Burland & Pitts, 2010). It features well-known jazz players and has the additional goal of keeping the music alive for the general public's benefit by showcasing various musical genres that have inspired jazz music worldwide. The music is performed by diverse performers from several countries, representing their cultural, social, and ethnic backgrounds (Bellano, 2021, p. 288). It was the perfect setting for rapidly and directly acquiring a sense of place. Jazz music lovers from all racial and social backgrounds interact and gain knowledge of the many jazz music genres. Performers can emulate the original cultural models through emotions, instruments, bodily movement, behavior, attitudes, and even clothing (Burland & Pitts, 2010).

The Montreal International Jazz Festival, held in Quebec, Canada, in June and July, serves as an example of the huge global influence jazz music has. The festival has attracted millions of ardent viewers since the 1980s and set attendance records, making it the must-attend event for all jazz aficionados worldwide. Jazz music enthusiasts and well-known jazz artists mingle during the event. This demonstrates both how well-accepted jazz music is over the world and how the Spectra Festival has helped to promote jazz.

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Bellano, M. (2021). Allegro non troppo: Bruno Bozzetto’s Animated Music (p. 288). Bloomsbury Academic.

Broudehoux, A. M., & Bonin, M. (2020). Beyond the scene: Rethinking event assessment at Montreal’s music festival. In Planning and Managing Smaller Events (pp. 97-116). Routledge.

Burland, K., & Pitts, S. E. (2010). Understanding jazz audiences: listening and learning at the Edinburgh Jazz and Blues Festival. Journal of New Music Research39(2), 125-134.

Cummins‐Russell, T. A., & Rantisi, N. M. (2012). Networks and place in Montreal's independent music industry. The Canadian Geographer/Le Géographe canadien56(1), 80-97.

Dannenberg, R. B. (2010). Style in music. In The structure of style (pp. 45-57). Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg.

Doktor, S. (2016). ‘The Jazz Problem’: How US Composers Grappled with the Sounds of Blackness, 1917–1925 (Doctoral dissertation, Ph. D. diss., University of Virginia).

Pachet, F. (2012). Musical virtuosity and creativity. In Computers and creativity (pp. 115-146). Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg.

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