The Development of Afro-jazz Culture and the Role of Agency in Nigeria

Ajiola, F.O ; Williams, P. (2020)

Scholarly articles

Book chapter

Throughout history, music has been one of the most common means by which man expresses his emotions, feelings and sentiments. The primordial man used music to express fear, pain and danger. Music was an important part of oriental mysticism. The Asian Indian developed a system of melodic modes called raga to express moods, days and seasons chanting form the core of Tibetan religious music. African traditions are replete with the use of music as part of rituals, ceremonies and social associated with the proper growth and functioning of institutions of society. Music over the ages has proved to be one of the indispensable arts cultivated by man for the growth, nurture and transfer of his institutions and values to future generations. This paper investigates the development and impact of Afro-jazz genre which snowballed into the Nigeria social space through the penetration of pop culture since the period of the Second World War. The paper highlights the role of agency in popularizing jazz culture among the Nigerian elites. The role played cream of Africanist musicians and musicologists, notably Bobby Benson, Tunde Amuwo, Bob Edwards, Willy Payne, Soji Lijadu and later Mike Aremu in redefining pop culture through a blend of indigenous culture with the western jazz genre is significant in understanding the changes and continuity in the made in the Nigerian social space since the twentieth century.