Friday, May 3, 2013

What is Big Band Music?

 Big Band is a type of musical ensemble and is associated with jazz and the Swing era.  Big Band music generally consists of rhythm, brass, and woodwind instruments.  This type of music originated in the United States in the 1920's.  Around 1916 bandleaders like Paul Whiteman and Vincent Lopez took elements of "sweet sounds" that people liked to dance to. They then decided to increase the size of their bands until they were actually considered orchestras.

As a decade of rebellion, the Roaring 20's was made for jazz. The young and the hip loved anything new and exciting.  However, the exciting new sounds were ultimately the irresistible force behind society's acceptance of jazz and Big Band music.

As World War II came about, the big bands reached their apex in popularity. It was unpleasant times and the mood of the country turned to sentimental sounds. As popular as these bands were on radio and records, there began to be a severe shortage of able musicians as most males were being drawn into the armed forces.

Today Big Band Music is making a comeback with bandleaders like Michael Bublé and Shaun Johnson Big Band Experience.  These artists bring back a time of classic  rhythms and harmonies with a mix of todays "pop" music.