Jazz is a music genre that originated in the African-American communities of New Orleans, United States.[1] It originated in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, and developed from roots in blues and ragtime.[2] Jazz is seen by many as "America's classical music".[3] Since the 1920s Jazz Age, jazz has become recognized as a major form of musical expression. It then emerged in the form of independent traditional and popular musical styles, all linked by the common bonds of African-American and European-American musical parentage with a performance orientation.[4] Jazz is characterized by swing and blue notes, call and response vocals, polyrhythms and improvisation. Jazz has roots in West African cultural and musical expression, and in African-American music traditions including blues and ragtime, as well as European military band music.[5] Intellectuals around the world have hailed jazz as "one of America's original art forms".[6]

As jazz spread around the world, it drew on national, regional, and local musical cultures, which gave rise to different styles. New Orleans jazz began in the early 1910s, combining earlier brass-band marches, French quadrilles, biguine, ragtime and blues with collective polyphonic improvisation. In the 1930s, heavily arranged dance-oriented swing big bands, Kansas City jazz, a hard-swinging, bluesy, improvisational style and Gypsy jazz (a style that emphasized musette waltzes) were the prominent styles. Bebop emerged in the 1940s, shifting jazz from danceable popular music toward a more challenging "musician's music" which was played at faster tempos and used more chord-based improvisation. Cool jazz developed near the end of the 1940s, introducing calmer, smoother sounds and long, linear melodic lines.

The 1950s saw the emergence of free jazz, which explored playing without regular meter, beat and formal structures, and in the mid-1950s, hard bop emerged, which introduced influences from rhythm and blues, gospel, and blues, especially in the saxophone and piano playing. Modal jazz developed in the late 1950s, using the mode, or musical scale, as the basis of musical structure and improvisation. Jazz-rock fusion appeared in the late 1960s and early 1970s, combining jazz improvisation with rock music's rhythms, electric instruments, and highly amplified stage sound. In the early 1980s, a commercial form of jazz fusion called smooth jazz became successful, garnering significant radio airplay. Other styles and genres abound in the 2000s, such as Latin and Afro-Cuban jazz.

Etymology and definition

American jazz composer, lyricist, and pianist Eubie Blake made an early contribution to the genre's etymology
Albert Gleizes, 1915, Composition for "Jazz" from the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York

The origin of the word jazz has resulted in considerable research, and its history is well documented. It is believed to be related to jasm, a slang term dating back to 1860 meaning "pep, energy".[7] The earliest written record of the word is in a 1912 article in the Los Angeles Times in which a minor league baseball pitcher described a pitch which he called a "jazz ball" "because it wobbles and you simply can't do anything with it".[7]

The use of the word in a musical context was documented as early as 1915 in the Chicago Daily Tribune.[8] Its first documented use in a musical context in New Orleans was in a November 14, 1916 Times-Picayune article about "jas bands".[9] In an interview with NPR, musician Eubie Blake offered his recollections of the slang connotations of the term, saying, "When Broadway picked it up, they called it 'J-A-Z-Z'. It wasn't called that. It was spelled 'J-A-S-S'. That was dirty, and if you knew what it was, you wouldn't say it in front of ladies."[10] The American Dialect Society named it the Word of the 20th Century.[11]

Jazz is difficult to define because it encompasses a wide range of music spanning a period of over 100 years, from ragtime to the rock-infused fusion. Attempts have been made to define jazz from the perspective of other musical traditions, such as European music history or African music. But critic Joachim-Ernst Berendt argues that its terms of reference and its definition should be broader,[12] defining jazz as a "form of art music which originated in the United States through the confrontation of the Negro with European music"[13] and arguing that it differs from European music in that jazz has a "special relationship to time defined as 'swing'". Jazz involves "a spontaneity and vitality of musical production in which improvisation plays a role" and contains a "sonority and manner of phrasing which mirror the individuality of the performing jazz musician".[12] In the opinion of Robert Christgau, "most of us would say that inventing meaning while letting loose is the essence and promise of jazz".[14]

A broader definition that encompasses different eras of jazz has been proposed by Travis Jackson: "it is music that includes qualities such as swing, improvising, group interaction, developing an 'individual voice', and being open to different musical possibilities".[15] Krin Gibbard argued that "jazz is a construct" which designates "a number of musics with enough in common to be understood as part of a coherent tradition".[16] In contrast to commentators who have argued for excluding types of jazz, musicians are sometimes reluctant to define the music they play. Duke Ellington, one of jazz's most famous figures, said, "It's all music."[17]

Other Languages
Afrikaans: Jazz
Alemannisch: Jazz
Аҧсшәа: Аџьаз
العربية: جاز
aragonés: Jazz
asturianu: Jazz
azərbaycanca: Caz
বাংলা: জ্যাজ
Bân-lâm-gú: Jazz
Basa Banyumasan: Jazz
башҡортса: Джаз
беларуская: Джаз
беларуская (тарашкевіца)‎: Джаз
български: Джаз
Boarisch: Jazz
bosanski: Džez
brezhoneg: Jazz
català: Jazz
čeština: Jazz
Cymraeg: Jazz
dansk: Jazz
Deutsch: Jazz
eesti: Džäss
Ελληνικά: Τζαζ
español: Jazz
Esperanto: Ĵazo
euskara: Jazz
فارسی: جاز
Fiji Hindi: Jazz
føroyskt: Jazz
français: Jazz
Frysk: Jazz
furlan: Musiche jazz
Gaeilge: Snagcheol
Gàidhlig: Jazz
galego: Jazz
贛語: 爵士樂
한국어: 재즈
հայերեն: Ջազ
हिन्दी: जैज़ संगीत
hrvatski: Jazz
Ido: Jazo
Bahasa Indonesia: Jazz
íslenska: Djass
italiano: Jazz
עברית: ג'אז
Jawa: Jazz
Kabɩyɛ: Jazz
ქართული: ჯაზი
қазақша: Джаз
Kiswahili: Jazz
Kreyòl ayisyen: Djaz
Кыргызча: Жаз (музыка)
кырык мары: Джаз
Latina: Jazz
latviešu: Džezs
Lëtzebuergesch: Jazz
lietuvių: Džiazas
Ligure: Jazz
Limburgs: Jazz
lingála: Jazz
Lingua Franca Nova: Jaz
la .lojban.: zgirjazu
magyar: Dzsessz
македонски: Џез
മലയാളം: ജാസ്
Bahasa Melayu: Jaz
မြန်မာဘာသာ: ဂျက်စ်ဂီတ
Nāhuatl: Jazz
Nederlands: Jazz
Nedersaksies: Jazz
नेपाल भाषा: ज्याज्
日本語: ジャズ
norsk: Jazz
norsk nynorsk: Jazz
occitan: Jazz
oʻzbekcha/ўзбекча: Jaz
ਪੰਜਾਬੀ: ਜੈਜ਼
Pälzisch: Jazz
Pangasinan: Jazz
پنجابی: جاز
Papiamentu: Jazz
پښتو: جَز
Patois: Jaz
Picard: Djazz
Plattdüütsch: Jazz
polski: Jazz
português: Jazz
română: Jazz
rumantsch: Jazz
Runa Simi: Jazz
русиньскый: Джез
русский: Джаз
саха тыла: Дьаз
sardu: Jazz
Scots: Jazz
Seeltersk: Jazz
shqip: Jazz
sicilianu: Jazz
Simple English: Jazz
slovenčina: Džez
slovenščina: Jazz
ślůnski: Dżez
کوردی: جاز
српски / srpski: Џез
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Jazz
Sunda: Jazz
suomi: Jazz
svenska: Jazz
Tagalog: Jazz
தமிழ்: ஜாஸ்
татарча/tatarça: Джаз
ไทย: แจ๊ส
Türkçe: Caz
тыва дыл: Джаз
українська: Джаз
اردو: جاز
Tiếng Việt: Jazz
Võro: Tsäss
Winaray: Jazz
吴语: 爵士乐
ייִדיש: דזשעז
Yorùbá: Jazz
粵語: 爵士樂
žemaitėška: Džiazos
中文: 爵士乐