Excerpts from Billy Taylor's lectures at the Kennedy Center.


The roots of jazz can be found in the sounds of West African: drums and singing. Ripped from their homelands by the slave trade, forbidden to play the drums or to speak their native languages the first African-Americans nonetheless preserved a common thread from the esthetics of African music. These threads expressed themselves in America as field hollers, the blues, gospel music, and ultimately jazz music. Today, the circle has been completed as American jazz musicians have traveled to Africa to share their music, in many cases finding new inspiration in the vitality of today's African music.

Send me to Village Pulse Outpost, a record label specializing Mandinka drumming from West Africa, and an especially beautiful web site as well. Village Pulse Outpost is on the Rootsworld server where there is also a location there with reviews of Description of available audio formats.

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