[...] Lastly, the trend of showing off the negative stereotypes of black culture and disregarding
the other parts that are involved, demonstrates a
lack of understanding and respect for the music
one is taking. [...]
Rock and Roll is another great example,
while jazz improvisation, blues and R&B were
the starting points for the growth of the genre,
when artists such as Chuck Berry and the underrepresented Sister Rosetta Tharpe began to play
around with the ideas on an electric guitar, you
would never know it without going out of your
way to learn music history. Elvis Presley is a classic example of someone who was influenced by
black music, but reaped the benefits that many of
his black influences never enjoyed. Even nowadays, I think we can all agree that rock music is
considered to be a white genre, but its history isn’t
acknowledged by many. It’s not like black people
aren’t making rock music, they just often don’t get
as much attention because of the forgotten history.
If only hip-hop and R&B are considered to be “black music,” then a blog or radio show that typically features “black music” won’t include rock
music into their line up. Vice versa, a black artist
playing rock music
may get passed
over by a rock blog
or radio station
of it or not, on
some level it’s not
“real rock” in this
The music industry is just as much about image as it is the music,
so if an artist doesn’t fit within the stereotypical
image one has of a genre or style, they can/are very
easily passed over. Rock & Roll definitely has been
appropriated by white people in this sense.
“Confused? Here's A Breakdown Of What
The Cultural Appropriation Of Black Music Is”,
Trumpet Grrrr, blavity.com, 2017.
Dr DRE, Snoop Dogg, Ice Cube and Eminem, 2000.
The notion of borrowing is particularly problematic in the music industry because of the
lack of attribution to black artists' contributions.
[...]We've seen the result of this commoditization of black music when Elvis was crowned the
"King of Rock 'n' Roll" and more recently when
Justin Timberlake was noted as the "King of
Keith Richards and Mick Jagger also have
been criticized time and time again for their
early work, influenced by the blues artist Muddy
Waters. But Jagger and Richards clearly had a
love and appreciation for American black music.
They shared their own music and interpretations of Waters music with the intention "to
turn other people on to" Muddy Waters. [...]
“Appropriation vs. Appreciation in Music:
Where Should We Draw the Line?”, Rachel Bresnahan,
Legendandary DC hardcore punk band Bad Brains, photograph
by Steven Hanner, www.stevenhanner.com, 2009.
When Bad Brains exploded onto Washington,
D.C.’s nascent punk scene in late 1979, they were
truly breaking ground. The mere fact that the
members of the band were all black was a radical
departure — punk was still just starting to find
itself, but it was already dominated by a particular,
snotty strain of white male anger and discontent.
Bad Brains, who got their start as a jazz outfit
called Mind Power in 1976, were different because
they weren’t white, but also because they pioneered an entirely new energy. […] The band’s formula was anti-genre, and they seamlessly merged
funk and punk, metal, hardcore, and reggae, a feat
no other band had ever attempted.
[…] But Bad Brains also stood out because they
were contagiously positive, countering the depravity and vulgarity the genre was already known for
with what they called “P.M.A.” — positive mental
It also served as a potent counterpoint to the
violence then polluting the punk scene.
“It’s been nearly 40 years since Bad Brains shattered
stereotypes about punk rock — and black music”,
Nina Renata Aron, timeline.com, 2018.
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What message does the author convey? Do you agree?
It is an extract / excerpt from…
It was written by… and published on…
This is clearly a biased (subjective) / unbiased
(objective) source as…
The point he / she is trying to make is…
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Share your findings with your classmates and learn about the other texts.
What are the common points and the differences
between the texts?
What do you think of the limits between
appropriation and appreciation? Can there be a
definitive answer? Why?
How can we make a difference between
appropriation and homage?
… is really a striking argument…
She/ he / It makes a point… but…
It’s difficult to judge an artist because...
Artists all have influences…
What an artist should do is…
To be considered an original artist, they need to...
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Language in progress
Pour insister sur un point, on utilise des adverbes :
Ex : Richards clearly had a love for American black
On peut aussi utiliser l’auxiliaire do et insister
dessus à l’oral.
Ex : Richards did have a love for American black
Your teacher will give you a Bingo grid with five
names to find in the texts of this double page.
(ex: a black singer, a rock band, a jazzman, a female
artist…). In pairs, complete your grid. When you’re
done, you must say ‘Bingo!’.
Over to you!
Post your reaction
Let’s use what you have learnt in !
One of these texts makes you feel like reacting. Post a short
comment about a famous artist or band discussing his / her / their importance in American