The Genesis Of Modern Music Was Birthed From African-Based Music

Alyssa Guznik
May 25, 2023

Music has long been a part of what being Black means on a molecular level.  Rhythms are part of our blood. Lyrics reveal our spirits.  From the drum beats of our ancestors to the searing riffs of Jimi Hendrix, music is and always has been Black.

Many Black music legends have been rewritten as contributors to “white” music genres. The reality is that the majority of the music enjoyed by the world around exists because of its origins in negro spirituals.

Country, ragtime, jazz, rock n’ roll, and house are just a sample of our musical genius. These were all created by and for Black people. They were later appropriated by acts like Elvis and Bobby Osborne instead of giving credit to musicians like Sister Rosetta Tharpe and DeFord Bailey.

The family tree of modern music as we know it branches out from Africa. There are few genres that Black people haven’t influenced. Even when whiteness wants the world to believe it's responsible for creating anything worth paying attention to, we must remember our truth. We made the music people love today.