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Pet Sins January 2010

The blending of RnB with musical traditions around the world

Rhythm and blues, heir to jazz, blues, and other African American musical styles, and predecessor of doo-wop, rock and roll and other American genres, has evolved in form and definition since its early days in the 1940s.1 The influences of RnB and its derivative forms such as funk have been felt far beyond the borders of the United States. Nigerian composer Fela Kuti, taking inspiration from the funk sounds of the Black Panther Movement, fused jazz, funk and Yoruba music to create the new genre Afrobeat in the 1970s.2 Funk (as well as reggae and Afrobeat) influences also entered juju; music, a popular Nigerian genre derived from traditional Yoruba music.3 In Algeria, the popular folk music style of rai; blended with funk, blues, and other African diaspora musical influences.4

Contemporary RnB continues to inspired musicians around the world. Some have taken fully to RnB while others merge RnB with indigenous musical traditions. Moroccan singer Elam Jay hybridized traditional gnawa music with RnB in his new genre "Gnawitone Styla".5 Taiwan-based Chinese American pop singer Lee Hom has made an effort to combine RnB and the music of China's ethnic minorities in his 2005 CD Shangri-la.6

Notes
  1. Rhythm and Blues on wikipedia
  2. Afrobeat on National Geographic
  3. Jùjú music on Wikipedia
    Rhythm and Blues on MSN Encarta
  4. Rai on wikipedia
    Rhythm and Blues on MSN Encarta
  5. Arab music on wikipedia
  6. Lee-Hom Wang on wikipedia
    Shangri-la album literature