One the musician’s musical pieces which features a notable performance is the “Original Jelly Roll Blues”. The most observable features in this piece include the classical themes, multiple rhythmic effects, and tonal changes which are all combined in a creative way. The combination of the rhythms and themes creates a piece that sounds like an orchestra. Morton believed that a good piano piece should be similar to an orchestra. The piece was written in the year 1915 and was among the first of his pieces to be published. The original piece was played by the musician’s band “The Red Hot Peppers”. When one listens to the pieces, he or she notices that the trumpet, clarinet, and trombone sounds act as the lead melody. Unlike other pieces, the musicians succeeded in enriching the basic structure of the piece by creating suspended rhythms using instrumental breaks. While providing the breaks, he also introduced piano solo passages. In the final part of the piece, the jazz musician creatively used the traditional “New Orleans” styles that involved a combination of melody created by many musical instruments with different melody and chord progression. This helped in creating a remarkable climatic rhythm. The piece also contains an Argentine rhythm which is similar to tango in some passages. Morton claims that the rhythm is a vital part of jazz pieces. The tunes of pieces also have correct tempos just like his other pieces such as his version of “Sidewalk Blues”. In all his pieces he stressed the importance of not speeding up tunes by selecting the right tempos. When listening to the piece one can notice that it is sweet and soft even though it has many rhythms. Morton was among the artists who made major contributions in jazz music. His piece, “The Original Jelly Blues” played a significant role in supporting the traditional jazz style of the New Orleans. Many current jazz artists are influenced by Morton’s style of combining jazz elements such as blues and ragtime. A combination of these elements enables composers to imitate a band which is a necessary part of a jazz piece.
Hawes, P. (2014). The compositions of Jelly Roll Morton 1923- 1941.
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