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Black music is a term encompassing music produced or inspired by black people, including Sub-Saharan African music traditions and African popular music as well as the music genres of the African diaspora, including Caribbean music and African American music. These genres include jazz, blues, soul, funk, rock and roll and, more recently, rap and hip hop.
In the black culture, music is important because it has a unifying quality that works in the same way cultural identity does; it crosses all borders. Music unifies people because all backgrounds can both appreciate the same song even if they have nothing else in common. It is a matter of taste and opinions, not intellectual arguments. Another important fact that ties music to black communities is that it has visible roots in Africa. It was a way that the early slaves could express themselves and communicate when they were being forcibly relocated and when there were restrictions on what cultural activities they could pursue. In a time where their world was being turned upside down, music served as an escape and form of communication/expression for early black communities. The ability of music to act as a binding factor provides the black culture with a strong sense of connectivity. The beginnings of black music as a separate genre in the United States started with the advent of slave spirituals and gospel music.
- African-American music
- Afro-Caribbean music
- Black British music
- Music of Africa
- Brazilian music
- Music of the Dominican Republic
- Music of Ecuador
- Puerto Rico
- Spencer, Jon Michael. Black hymnody: a hymnological history of the African-American church (1992)