Rock ‘n’ roll music has its roots in the early 20th century and is one of the most popular genres of music to date. It has many different styles and subgenres, but there are some common characteristics that help define it as a whole. Here are four key characteristics that help define rock ‘n’ roll:
1. Influenced by African American Music
Rock ’n’ roll is a form of popular music that emerged in the United States around 1950 and quickly became a global phenomenon. The music was created by combining rhythm, blues, jazz and gospel with country western and pop music forms while incorporating other styles, such as Latin rhythms and Caribbean calypso, into its repertoire.
Rock ’n’ roll is said to have originated from an upsurge in African American culture due to World War II. There were many changes occurring at this time which caused African Americans to become more vocal about their issues within society, such as racism and segregation laws still being enforced despite America’s promise of freedom for all citizens.
This led them to fight back against these discriminatory practices through protests such as boycotts against businesses that refused service based on race or ethnicity—and sometimes even violence. All this, combined with the growing popularity of jazz musicians like Louis Armstrong, paved the way towards creating something entirely new: rock ’n’ roll!
2. Use of the String Electric Guitar
The electric guitar was first used by jazz musicians. In fact, the electric guitar was introduced to rock ‘n’ roll music in 1954 by Chuck Berry’s song “Maybellene,” which is one of the earliest examples of the instrument being used in popular music.
The first commercially successful electric guitars were manufactured by Gibson and Fender and made their debut on stage at an event called “The Battle of the Bands.” The event took place in New York City on March 25th, 1956, at Madison Square Garden.
3. Free Use of Harmony in Soloing
Harmony has a lot to do with the way notes connect to each other. Harmony is the foundation of most western music, and it’s important in rock ‘n’ roll because it is a fusion of many musical styles.
Rock ‘n’ roll can be identified by its use of harmonies that we wouldn’t normally hear in pop music or classical music: dissonant chords, modulations (changing keys) and polytonality (having two or more keys at once).
4. Electric Bass and Drums
The electric bass guitar was first used in rock ‘n’ roll by Chuck Berry, who called his bassist Jerome Green “Bassie” for short. The Fender Precision Bass was invented in 1951 by Leo Fender, who also invented the Stratocaster guitar.
Both electric basses and drum sets were designed to provide a solid rhythm section for the music so that it wouldn’t be just guitar solos like jazz or blues music.
With its unique blend of African American and European influences, rock ‘n’ roll tells a story about who we are as people in this country. It also shows how far we’ve come from being divided by race and religion into one unified nation that celebrates diversity.