Teachers' blog


【ニューオリンズご紹介 –Part7】



New Orleans—Part 7

Today, I would like to talk about the history of jazz music.


A lot of people will instantly think about jazz when they think about New Orleans. New Orleans is known for its jazz, but it is actually considered to be the birthplace of all kinds of music. 


Its history goes way back to the 19th century. Many slaves were brought to the United States from Africa, and they were often not allowed to communicate. So, they created songs—and by singing them, they were able to communicate with each other.  While other places were not allowing slaves to talk, communicate, sing or dance, New Orleans was the only place where slaves were allowed to play drums.  African drums were used for Voodoo rituals, and are still used today.


The earliest style of jazz is called Dixieland, and it is considered “traditional” jazz music.  From there, it has changed into different styles of music, such as: funk, hip hop, R&B, soul, pop and etc. Voodoo rhythms also originated from New Orleans’ traditional jazz as well.


In churches, there used to be different seating areas for white people and black people. On the first floor, white people were the only ones who were allowed to be seated, and the second floor—or seats all the way in the back—were only reserved for black people.  However, the Voodoo religion was different, as it placed no restrictions.  It made everyone feel free, and they used African drums to express their emotions.  In Voodoo religious ceremonies and services, the atmosphere is filled with  music, and everyone can get up and dance.

Copyright © 2014 NTT Learning Systems Corporation. All Rights Reserved.