Welcome to Awakenings

Life IS history in the making. Every word we say, everything we do becomes history the moment it is said or done. Life void of memories leaves nothing but emptiness. For those who might consider history boring, think again: It is who we are, what we do and why we are here. We are certainly individuals in our thoughts and deeds but we all germinated from seeds planted long, long ago.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Roaring into the 20s

The Jazz Age (Roaring 20s) and Louis Armstrong: Nostalgia reigns when you repeat those words to just about anyone growing up in the 20s to the end of the 20th century. The 1920s roared because of the high rise in popularity of music and dance. Cultural changes abounded!

No way to depict every hit song, writer or performer during this era. Hopefully, you will leave today with a feeling, a heart-to-heart, gut feeling about the life & times of the 20s.

Are you ready? Let's ROAR... Ever heard the expression Riding On A Rail? Its meaning here will be quite different than than depicted in the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. Nothing painful. No kind of punishment. Just excitement like riding a mono-rail roller coaster for the first time. You know...exhilarating! With music comes natural rhythm which in turn leads to body movement...really hard to listen to the music of the Roaring 20s without wanting to dance the night away! Thus, a burst of newly invented dances came about in this era. 

One cannot enter or leave the Jazz Age with mention of the flapper. The 1920s brought with it significant changes in lifestyle and culture, especially on the part of the woman. Judging from the savoir faire hailed by the flapper, fashion, radio, music and dance were all culturally connected. Whether she always did the right thing might be debatable but the flapper certainly aired a confidence unsurpassed for the times...a rebel flaunting contempt for what was considered acceptable behavior. 

Enjoy a taste of the music and dance within an excerpt from Awakenings...

Embracing all styles modern 
Appeared the fashionable flapper 
Short sleek hair, shapeless shift dress 
NOT often referred to as dapper

Revealing bare knees during the Charleston dance
The flapper was a bird out of a cage
Typifying the reckless rebel spirit
Who danced the nights away in the Jazz Age
What about Louis Armstrong? His name was mentioned in the beginning and he IS an integral part of 1920s music. He relished an active music career from 1914 to 1971 but came to prominence in the 1920s as a result of his musical inventiveness with the trumpet and cornet. He is known as The Jazz Original carrying with him the nicknames "Satchmo" (short for "Sacthelmouth" referring to the size of his mouth) and "Pops" (his humor and positive disposition made people around him feel good). He will always be remembered as one of the most influential artists in the history of music with lyrics and sound still going strong well into the 21st century.
Louis Armstrong's stage personality matched his flashy cornet and
trumpet playing. Armstrong is also known for his raspy singing voice.
His raspy voice reverberated with a charismatic air in much the same manner as his trumpet playing. Both grabbed the listener with a sound typical of being right there in the heart of New Orleans. He lived the worst of times, the best of times but none of the times without music. 
He began to scat sing (improvised vocal jazz using non-sensical words) and recorded "Heebie Jeebies" in 1926. This new type of jazz was hailed across the country by both black and white musicians. He is considered the most important improvisor in jazz and taught the world to swing. His infectious, wide grin won the hearts of people everywhere.
How would you like To Live In The 1920s

What captures you the most about life in the Roaring Twenties? 

And the music goes on beating to the rhythm of the changing times. . .