Africa Persists: The Transformative Powers of Jazz, Blues, Samba and Bossa Nova Open Access

Hawkins, Keme L. (2012)

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Africa Persists: The Transformative Powers of Jazz, Blues, Samba and Bossa Nova

During my time in graduate school, my interest in art and notions of black identity in South America reached its zenith during my first trip to Brazil in 2006. There I witnessed a cultural idea of race and identity that simultaneously attempted to include and exclude African sensibilities. Having studied and taught black music and American cultural history for three years prior to beginning my doctoral program, I decided to return to my roots for my final project. This project is an examination of the musical traditions of Jazz, Blues, Samba and Bossa Nova as they reflect various cultural encounters, and subsequently newly improvised creations. Through the chaos of these cultural encounters in the U.S. and Brazil a corridor of rhythm opens up for us and we can see that there is a thread of continuity in the reinvention of identity in these cultural expressions. I am suggesting that perhaps African cultural survivals or linkages between Africa and other diasporic communities are revealed through an act of disruption, or improvised cultural linking to African derived religious traditions (ADRT), in the music of blues, jazz, and samba and bossa nova. It is a challenge to encapsulate all the important shifts that took place in each nation's identity, the influences of African religion and the various creations of musical genres through an interdisciplinary study. Nevertheless, this document attempts to trace the national importance, cultural context and formation of these genres.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Introduction: Defining Diasporic Context and Reading for Cultural Survivals...9

Chapter One: Chapter One: Cultural Encounters, Transculturation and Improvisation...16

Chapter Two: African Derived Religious Traditions and Philosophy...28

Chapter Three: Vodou, Hoodoo, Blues and Jazz...57

Chapter Four: Candomblé, Carnival, Samba e Bossa Nova...98

Conclusion: Musical Improvisations of Africa Continue...127

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