How music has changed through the past century

Isabella Aguilar, Staff Writer

The soft, the loud, the calm, the wild; music is something that we have all listened to. Some of it we like and some of it we dislike. Music has changed and it will continue to, in ways we never might have dreamed about.

In the 1920’s, music was for dancing. People would have fun doing dances such as the Fox Trot or the Charleston. Some of the most popular artists were Willy “The Lion” Smith, Smith King Oliver and Louis Armstrong. The most popular genres during the 1920’s were jazz, blues, swing and dance-band. Dance band was when popular music was played for a large group of people for dancing and fun.

Jumping over to the late 1930’s and early 1940’s people enjoyed swing, jazz, country, blues and R&B music according to the article “Pop Culture Goes To War” by Claudia Reinhardt and Bill Ganzel. Music was one way to escape worry and doubt during World War II; people would play music and just have fun. Some of the more popular musicians of this period included Duke Ellington, Billie Holiday, Frank Sinatra and Doris Day.

Then music changed again in the 1950’s and the 1960’s, more people listened to Rock and Roll, Pop and Jazz.

“In the beginning, rock and roll music was a provocation, an affront to parents and proper citizens,” according to the article “Rock and Roll” by Marcus Desmond Harmon and Robert Walser. The popular musicians and bands in the 1950’s and 1960’s were Elvis Presley, Chuck Berry, The Beatles, James Brown and The Beach Boys.

Hip-hop, pop, punk, disco, rock and roll and dance were immensely popular genres of music in the 1970’s and 1980’s. The most popular musicians were Michael Jackson, Led Zeppelin, Elton John, Prince, Madonna and Stevie Wonder. Something that came out in the 1980s was MTV, Music Television. MTV was one of the most popular television programs and came out in 1981. The first song played was “Video Killed the Radio Star,” by The Buggles.

Pop, rap, alternative, hip hop, rock, indie-rock and techno were some of the most popular genres of music listened to during the 1990’s and the early 2000’s.

Alternative music is music that is outside of the musical mainstream and doesn’t fit one or any genre of music, hence the name alternative. Some popular alternative bands are R.E.M, Nirvana, Radiohead, Red Hot Chili Peppers, and Pearl Jam, according to the article “100 Best Alternative Rock Bands” by Ansel Pereria.

Nirvana, Pearl Jam, Radiohead, Coldplay and Eminem were popular bands and artists during the 1990’s and the 2000’s. One of the most populars songs in the 2000s that we all have probably heard at parties is “The Cupid Shuffle” by Cupid.

And the 2010’s and 2020 popular artists included Drake, Rihanna, Bruno Mars, Taylor Swift and BTS. The popular genres of music are Latin music, hip-hop, EDM (electronic dance music), and R&B.

Freshman Yadira Basurto-Rojas says that her favorite genre of music is reggaeton. Reggaeton is a Puerto Rican form of rap, hip-hop and latin rhythms.

Kaitlyn Albertson, a freshman, says she enjoys pop music. Pop music produces some of the most popular hits. Pop is usually music with electronic instruments and simple beats with someone usually singing a catchy song.

Music has evolved from jazz and blues to pop and hip hop. Some people prefer the old music that was listened to during the 1920’s and some prefer the music listened to now. But music is still something we listen to, and we enjoy it with ourselves or with others.