American Popular Music

Choose one musical style or genre and two songs for your essay. The style/genre and at least one of the songs should be found in the textbook, either in a listening guide or mentioned in the text. You may choose two songs from the text if they can be linked in the same style or genre. Sample genres and performers/songwriters include the following:

  • Ragtime, Scott Joplin, and James Reese Europe’s Society Orchestra
  • 19th-century popular songs and Stephen Foster
  • Jazz and Duke Ellington
  • Latin Dance Music, Xavier Cugat, and Justo Don Azpiazú
  • Tin Pan Alley Song, Irving Berlin, and Ruth Etting
  • The Blues and W.C. Handy
  • Country Music and Jimmie Rodgers
  • Swing and Fletcher Henderson
  • Jazz singers, Ella Fitzgerald, and Billie Holiday
  • Rock n Roll, Chuck Berry, and Little Richards

Feel free to choose a style or songs that are not on this list, even if they come from a chapter of the textbook we have not covered yet.

Minimum of 400 words

As in the Module 2 Discussion, write about your songs and the style of music by focusing either on two “themes” or one “theme” and one “stream” as laid out in chapter 1. Work on connecting these elements together to define your chosen style or genre. You may ask yourself, for example, what defines ragtime musically, culturally, or historically? How do the examples I have chosen represent this style?

You must cite the textbook at least one time for this assignment. The easiest thing to do is quote from the textbook. See the Santa Fe College library’s page on the citation guide to help you choose your format for the citation. Some quick notes:

  • If you use APA, cite the book in text like this (Starr and Waterman, 2018, p. xx). Then include the book on a references list at the end of the document.
  • If you use Chicago, use a footnote that includes all the publication data and page number. There is no need for a reference list in this case.

Assignments will be evaluated for organization, originality, clarity, coherence and effectiveness as well as grammar, punctuation, and usage of standard written English. The grading rubric for this essay is found on the last page of this document.

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