Want to make creations as awesome as this one?


3rd Grade - 5th Grade

Sub Lesson 10/10

The Blues

Blues lyrics often contain the metaphorical use of trains to represent freedom, longing and escape.
The Blues is a music genre that is over 150 years old. It uses primary chords (I, IV, V), walking bass, and even has its own scale: the Blues Scale.

What is the Blues?

When African slaves were brought to America, they brought their culture with them - including their music and singing.Many features of the Blues have been traced back to Africa, such as call & response and the blues notes/scale.

Origins & Influences

It is from this rich heritage that many early African American music styles emerged, such as field hollers, ring shouts, spirituals, and work songs.The blues was birthed from the styles in the late 1800s, around the time where slavery ended.

Origins & Influences

Racial discrimination prevented the earliest examples of Blues music from being recorded and printed.In fact, the first Blues song, called "Crazy Blues" performed by the amazing Mamie Smith, wasn't recorded until the fall of 1914.

Production & Recording

Portamento is defined as "a pitch sliding from one to another."
The women of Blues, like Mamie Smith, Ma Rainy, and Bessie Smith forever changed the way people sing as their lyrical phrasing, portamento, and melisma influneced other music genres.

Made Popular By...

Other famous Blues musicians include Jelly Roll Morton, Muddy Waters, John Lee Hooker, Stevie Ray Vaughn, BB King, and Eric Clapton.

Made Famous By...

"Crazy Blues" by Mamie Smith

- primary chords (I, IV, V) - Chords use 7ths (E7, A7, B7) - 12 bar blues chord progression- Blues scale improvisation- Shuffling rhythm moderately - Slow tempo - Walking bass - Singing: uses portamento, melisma, call and response- Guitar: bend and slide notes - Strophic structure, - Verses often have an AAB line structure- Themes of early blues: being blue (sad), racial injustice and challenges

Features of the Blues

What is Blues music?

Question #1

What is the name of the first Blues song released by and African American?

Question #2

How did African msuic influence the Blues?

Question #3

Which 5 African American music styles did the Blues come from?

Question #4

How did the singing style of Bessie Smith, Ma Rainy, and Mamie Smith change the way people sing?

Question #5

Who is another famous Blues musician or singer?

Question #6

walking bass improvisation shuffling beat very fast tempo (speed) AAB verse structureprimary chords 7th chords call and responsestrophic structure limited melodic range bends and slides portamento

Which 2 are NOT features of the Blues?

Question #7

Please turn in all worksheets to the Turn-In Basket by the door.

That's all, kids!