Billboard is an American entertainment media brand owned by the Billboard-Hollywood Reporter Media Group, a division of Eldridge Industries. It publishes pieces involving news, opinion, reviews and style, is known for its music charts, including the Hot 100 and Billboard 200, tracking the most popular songs and albums in different genres, it hosts events, owns a publishing firm, operates several TV shows. Billboard was founded in 1894 by William Donaldson and James Hennegan as a trade publication for bill posters. Donaldson acquired Hennegen's interest in 1900 for $500. In the early years of the 20th century, it covered the entertainment industry, such as circuses and burlesque shows, created a mail service for travelling entertainers. Billboard began focusing more on the music industry as the jukebox and radio became commonplace. Many topics it covered were spun-off into different magazines, including Amusement Business in 1961 to cover outdoor entertainment, so that it could focus on music.
After Donaldson died in 1925, Billboard was passed down to his children and Hennegan's children, until it was sold to private investors in 1985, has since been owned by various parties. The first issue of Billboard was published in Cincinnati, Ohio by William Donaldson and James Hennegan on November 1, 1894, it covered the advertising and bill posting industry, was known as Billboard Advertising. At the time, billboards and paper advertisements placed in public spaces were the primary means of advertising. Donaldson handled editorial and advertising, while Hennegan, who owned Hennegan Printing Co. managed magazine production. The first issues were just eight pages long; the paper had columns like "The Bill Room Gossip" and "The Indefatigable and Tireless Industry of the Bill Poster". A department for agricultural fairs was established in 1896; the title was changed to The Billboard in 1897. After a brief departure over editorial differences, Donaldson purchased Hennegan's interest in the business in 1900 for $500 to save it from bankruptcy.
That May, Donaldson changed it from a monthly to a weekly paper with a greater emphasis on breaking news. He improved editorial quality and opened new offices in New York, San Francisco and Paris, re-focused the magazine on outdoor entertainment such as fairs, circuses and burlesque shows. A section devoted to circuses was introduced in 1900, followed by more prominent coverage of outdoor events in 1901. Billboard covered topics including regulation, a lack of professionalism and new shows, it had a "stage gossip" column covering the private lives of entertainers, a "tent show" section covering traveling shows, a sub-section called "Freaks to order". According to The Seattle Times, Donaldson published news articles "attacking censorship, praising productions exhibiting'good taste' and fighting yellow journalism"; as railroads became more developed, Billboard set up a mail forwarding system for traveling entertainers. The location of an entertainer was tracked in the paper's Routes Ahead column Billboard would receive mail on the star's behalf and publish a notice in its "Letter-Box" column that it has mail for them.
This service was first introduced in 1904, became one of Billboard's largest sources of profit and celebrity connections. By 1914, there were 42,000 people using the service, it was used as the official address of traveling entertainers for draft letters during World War I. In the 1960s, when it was discontinued, Billboard was still processing 1,500 letters per week. In 1920, Donaldson made a controversial move by hiring African-American journalist James Albert Jackson to write a weekly column devoted to African-American performers. According to The Business of Culture: Strategic Perspectives on Entertainment and Media, the column identified discrimination against black performers and helped validate their careers. Jackson was the first black critic at a national magazine with a predominantly white audience. According to his grandson, Donaldson established a policy against identifying performers by their race. Donaldson died in 1925. Billboard's editorial changed focus as technology in recording and playback developed, covering "marvels of modern technology" such as the phonograph, record players, wireless radios.
It began covering coin-operated entertainment machines in 1899, created a dedicated section for them called "Amusement Machines" in March 1932. Billboard began covering the motion picture industry in 1907, but ended up focusing on music due to competition from Variety, it created a radio broadcasting station in the 1920s. The jukebox industry continued to grow through the Great Depression, was advertised in Billboard, which led to more editorial focus on music; the proliferation of the phonograph and radio contributed to its growing music emphasis. Billboard published the first music hit parade on January 4, 1936, introduced a "Record Buying Guide" in January 1939. In 1940, it introduced "Chart Line", which tracked the best-selling records, was followed by a chart for jukebox records in 1944 called Music Box Machine charts. By the 1940s, Billboard was more of a music industry specialist publication; the number of charts it published grew after World War II, due to a growing variety of music interests and genres.
It had eight charts by 1987, covering different genres and formats, 28 charts by 1994. By 1943, Billboard had about 100 employees; the magazine's offices moved to Brighton, Ohio in 1946 to New York City in 1948. A five-column tabloid format was adopted in November 1950 and coated paper was first used in Billboard's print issues in January 1963, allowing for photojournalis
Jazz-funk is a subgenre of jazz music characterized by a strong back beat, electrified sounds and an early prevalence of analog synthesizers. The integration of funk, R&B music and styles into jazz resulted in the creation of a genre whose spectrum is quite wide and ranges from strong jazz improvisation to soul, funk or disco with jazz arrangements, jazz riffs, jazz solos, sometimes soul vocals. Jazz-funk is an American genre, where it was popular throughout the 1970s and the early 1980s, but it achieved noted appeal on the club-circuit in England during the mid-1970s. Similar genres include soul jazz and jazz fusion, but neither overlap with jazz-funk. Notably jazz-funk is less vocal, more arranged and featured more improvisation than soul jazz, retains a strong feel of groove and R&B versus some of the jazz fusion production. An extension of the jazz field, jazz-funk exhibits several distinctive characteristics. A first is the departure from ternary rhythm, i.e. the "swing", to the more danceable and unfamiliar binary rhythm, known as the "groove".
Hence this new jazz type's association with funk, a genre that created this groove rhythm, spearheaded by James Brown's drummers Clyde Stubblefield and John "Jabo" Starks. A second characteristic of jazz-funk music was the use of electric instruments, such as the Rhodes Piano or the electric bass guitar in jazz fusion, the first use of analogue electronic instruments notably by Herbie Hancock, whose jazz-funk period saw him surrounded on stage or in the studio by several Moog synthesizers; the ARP Odyssey, ARP String Ensemble and Hohner D6 Clavinet became popular at the time. A third feature is the shift of proportions between improvisation. Arrangements and overall writing were emphasised. In a nutshell this is a departure from post bop and free or modal jazz back to a more structured music, danceable. At its conception, the jazz-funk genre was looked down upon by jazz hard-liners as a sell-out, or "jazz for the dancehalls." It was unsubstantially presumed by these to be not intellectual or elite enough, which led to controversy about the music crossing over, but it was making jazz much more popular and mainstream.
The jazz-funk community absorbed the street sound of the funk rhythm, which gave the genre a dance-able rhythm and gained influences from the electric and some new analog electronic sound of fusion. From a jazz perspective, the ambivalence towards the jazz-funk genre arose – despite commercial success – because it was "too jazzy" and therefore too complex. Arrangements and instrumental tracks in pop or R&B music requires less initiation and allows the lead singer to relate to the audience, but jazz-funk was more focused on specific notes and overall music writing, so it offered this same interaction with the audience. Disdained by a part of the jazz community and its inability to top the pop charts, jazz-funk had a long hard time to establish itself. In the UK's nightclubs of the mid to late 1970s, DJs like Colin Curtis in Manchester, Birmingham's Graham Warr and Shaun Williams, Leeds-based Ian Dewhirst and Paul Schofield championed the genre, along with Chris Hill and Bob Jones in the South.
In the late 1980s, the work of rare groove crate diggers–DJs in England who were interested in looking back into the past and re-discovering old tunes, such as Norman Jay and Gilles Peterson and hip hop DJ's such as Marley Marl in the US, have both the jazz community and the pop professionals beginning to understand the value of the genre. Eddie Henderson, Donald Byrd and Herbie Hancock are challenged as major influences on jazz; the Mizell Brothers have received official accolades from the industry and are being listened to widely. Their work has been sampled in more modern music, it is worth noting that the more famous acid jazz movement is seen as a rediscovery of 1970s jazz-funk, interpreted or produced by contemporary artists of the 1990s. One of the most blatant examples is the band US3, who were signed to Acid Jazz Records founded by Peterson and Eddie Piller. US3 covered Cantaloupe Island recorded by Herbie Hancock, reissue of rare grooves from the era, led by DJ Peterson and Patrick Forge in the United Kingdom.
Contemporary jazz artists have contributed to the rediscovery, most notably Nathan Haines and Courtney Pine. Examples of artists that explored jazz-funk, soul jazz, or jazz rock are Miles Davis, Jimmy Smith, Herbie Mann, The Headhunters, Herbie Hancock, Funk Inc. Lalo Schifrin, Quincy Jones, Michael Henderson, Monk Higgins, David Axelrod, Sun Ra, Roy Ayers, Gary Bartz NTU Troop, George Benson, The Brecker Bros. Tom Browne, Ramsey Lewis, Donald Byrd, the Mizell Brothers, Billy Cobham, Lou Marini, The Crusaders, George Duke, Victor Wooten, Charles Earland, Johnny Hammond, Gene Harris, Eddie Henderson, Bobbi Humphrey, Bob James, Kool & The Gang, Rebirth Brass Band, Ronnie Laws, Mass Production, Brass Construction, The Average White Band, Light of the World, Jaco Pastorius, Patrice Rushen, Bill Summers, Tower of Power, Soul Rebels Brass Band, Miroslav Vitous, Dexter Wansel, Buddy Rich, Leon Ware. Herbie Hancock was dedicated to jazz-funk on many albums including Head Hunters, Man-Child, Secrets, Mr. Hands.
Post jazz-funk era in the early 1980s, he threw electronic influences into the jazz-funk mix when he created Future Shock and Sound-System. The genre is widely incorporated and sampled in R&B and hip hop, with a number of the aforementioned artists' works appearing as loops within these rec
Flame (Ronnie Laws album)
Flame is the fourth studio album by American saxophonist Ronnie Laws released in September 1978 by United Artists Records. The album reached No. 16 on the Billboard Top Soul Albums chart. Flame was executively produced by Wayne Henderson
Sister Sledge is an American musical vocal group from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Formed in 1971, the group consisted of sisters Debbie, Joni and Kathy Sledge; the siblings achieved international success at the height of the disco era. The year 1979 saw the release of their breakthrough album We Are Family, which peaked at number three on the US Album Chart and included the 1979 US top ten singles "He's the Greatest Dancer" and "We Are Family". A third single, "Lost in Music", reached the US top forty. "We Are Family" earned a Grammy Award nomination for Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal. Their other US singles include a 1982 remake of Mary Wells' 1964 hit, "My Guy", other singles include "Mama Never Told Me", "Thinking of You", before reaching number one on the UK Singles Chart with the song "Frankie" in 1985. Remixed versions of three of their singles in 1993 returned them to the UK Top 20. Although Kathy undertook a solo career in 1989, she continued to tour with the group. In 2015, Sister Sledge performed for Pope Francis at the World Festival of Families in Philadelphia.
Daughters of Broadway tap dancer Edwin Sledge and actress Florez Sledge, Debra "Debbie" Sledge, Joan "Joni" Sledge, Kim Sledge, Kathy Sledge were given vocal training by their grandmother Viola Williams, a former lyric soprano opera singer and protégé of civil rights leader Mary McLeod Bethune. Under Viola’s guidance they sang at their family church, Williams Temple Christian Methodist Episcopal until forming a band and performing at charity and political events throughout Philadelphia, aptly named ‘Mrs Williams’ Grandchildren’; the group toured much of the East coast including New York, New Jersey and home town Philadelphia with Florez acting as their manager and Debbie as musical director. They released their first single "Time Will Tell" in 1971 on local music label Money Back. In 1973, they released the single "Mama Never Told Me", which became a top 20 hit in the UK in 1975, but it was with the Patrick Grant & Gwen Guthrie single "Love Don’t Go Through No Changes On Me" that the siblings enjoyed their first taste of success.
The song was a big hit in Japan and as a result the girls were flown to the country to perform at the Tokyo Music Festival where they won the Silver Prize. The sisters performed at the Zaire 74 concert in Africa alongside James Brown during The Rumble in the Jungle boxing event. Sister Sledge’s first album Circle of Love was released by ATCO in 1975 and included songs written by Gwen Guthrie and Gwen's then-boyfriend, studio bassist Patrick Grant who changed his name to Haras Fyre; the group enjoyed some success in Europe and as a result, the album Together was recorded in Germany in 1977. Released through the Cotillion label, another Atlantic subsidiary, the album produced a minor hit with the single "Blockbuster Boy" reaching No. 61 on the US R&B chart. By the end of the decade, all four sisters graduated from Temple University in Philadelphia. At something of a crossroads in their careers, the future seemed a little uncertain for the group but Atlantic Records connected them with producers Nile Rodgers and Bernard Edwards of the band Chic, it all changed.
After some initial challenges to working collaboratively, the breakthrough album We Are Family was recorded and released by Cotillion. The lead single "He's the Greatest Dancer" was a No. 9 crossover hit. In 1979, the record's anthemic title track "We Are Family" followed and became a worldwide smash charting at No. 2 pop and No. 1 R&B. The song and group were nominated for a Grammy Award and "We Are Family" was adopted as the official anthem for The Pittsburgh Pirates who went on to win the World Series that year. Sister Sledge were duly invited to perform the national anthem at the opening game in front of 45,000 fans; the album was certified platinum by the RIAA and produced two more classic disco singles, "Lost in Music" and "Thinking of You". Around this time, Debbie Sledge went on maternity leave and the eldest sister, filled in for her, they were named Billboard ‘Best New Artist’. In 1980, their follow up album Love Somebody; the lead single "Love Somebody Today" scored moderately well, charting at No. 6 on R&B and No. 64 on the pop chart.
An extensive three-year live tour began and the quartet performed sold-out shows all over the world. In 1981, Sister Sledge worked with Narada Michael Walden who produced their fifth studio album, All American Girls; the project was intended as a collaboration but the resulting album is attributed to Narada Michael Walden. The title track became a number-three R&B hit but the following singles "Next Time You’ll Know" and "If You Really Want Me" did only moderate business; as a tribute to the late Bob Marley, a reggae influenced mix of the album's fourth release "He's Just A Runaway" was recorded at Radio City Music Hall in New York. The girls self-produced their next record The Sisters in 1982; the album spawned the No. 14 R&B and No. 23 pop hit "My Guy". The group subsequently appeared on the March 1984 episode of The Jeffersons entitled "My Guy, George", in which they performed the song; the album Bet Cha Say That to All the Girls was released in 1983, the lead single from which featured American Jazz singer Al Jarreau.
The group experienced some considerable success in 1984, when they re-released "Thinking of You" and "Lost in Music" in the UK, the latter peaking
Jazz is a music genre that originated in the African-American communities of New Orleans, United States, in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, developed from roots in blues and ragtime. Jazz is seen by many as "America's classical music". Since the 1920s Jazz Age, jazz has become recognized as a major form of musical expression, it emerged in the form of independent traditional and popular musical styles, all linked by the common bonds of African-American and European-American musical parentage with a performance orientation. Jazz is characterized by swing and blue notes and response vocals and improvisation. Jazz has roots in West African cultural and musical expression, in African-American music traditions including blues and ragtime, as well as European military band music. Intellectuals around the world have hailed jazz as "one of America's original art forms"; as jazz spread around the world, it drew on national and local musical cultures, which gave rise to different styles. New Orleans jazz began in the early 1910s, combining earlier brass-band marches, French quadrilles, biguine and blues with collective polyphonic improvisation.
In the 1930s arranged dance-oriented swing big bands, Kansas City jazz, a hard-swinging, improvisational style and Gypsy jazz were the prominent styles. Bebop emerged in the 1940s, shifting jazz from danceable popular music toward a more challenging "musician's music", played at faster tempos and used more chord-based improvisation. Cool jazz developed near the end of the 1940s, introducing calmer, smoother sounds and long, linear melodic lines; the 1950s saw the emergence of free jazz, which explored playing without regular meter and formal structures, in the mid-1950s, hard bop emerged, which introduced influences from rhythm and blues and blues in the saxophone and piano playing. Modal jazz developed in the late 1950s, using the mode, or musical scale, as the basis of musical structure and improvisation. Jazz-rock fusion appeared in the late 1960s and early 1970s, combining jazz improvisation with rock music's rhythms, electric instruments, amplified stage sound. In the early 1980s, a commercial form of jazz fusion called smooth jazz became successful, garnering significant radio airplay.
Other styles and genres abound in the 2000s, such as Afro-Cuban jazz. The origin of the word "jazz" has resulted in considerable research, its history is well documented, it is believed to be related to "jasm", a slang term dating back to 1860 meaning "pep, energy". The earliest written record of the word is in a 1912 article in the Los Angeles Times in which a minor league baseball pitcher described a pitch which he called a "jazz ball" "because it wobbles and you can't do anything with it"; the use of the word in a musical context was documented as early as 1915 in the Chicago Daily Tribune. Its first documented use in a musical context in New Orleans was in a November 14, 1916 Times-Picayune article about "jas bands". In an interview with NPR, musician Eubie Blake offered his recollections of the slang connotations of the term, saying, "When Broadway picked it up, they called it'J-A-Z-Z', it wasn't called that. It was spelled'J-A-S-S'; that was dirty, if you knew what it was, you wouldn't say it in front of ladies."
The American Dialect Society named it the Word of the Twentieth Century. Jazz is difficult to define because it encompasses a wide range of music spanning a period of over 100 years, from ragtime to the rock-infused fusion. Attempts have been made to define jazz from the perspective of other musical traditions, such as European music history or African music, but critic Joachim-Ernst Berendt argues that its terms of reference and its definition should be broader, defining jazz as a "form of art music which originated in the United States through the confrontation of the Negro with European music" and arguing that it differs from European music in that jazz has a "special relationship to time defined as'swing'". Jazz involves "a spontaneity and vitality of musical production in which improvisation plays a role" and contains a "sonority and manner of phrasing which mirror the individuality of the performing jazz musician". In the opinion of Robert Christgau, "most of us would say that inventing meaning while letting loose is the essence and promise of jazz".
A broader definition that encompasses different eras of jazz has been proposed by Travis Jackson: "it is music that includes qualities such as swing, group interaction, developing an'individual voice', being open to different musical possibilities". Krin Gibbard argued that "jazz is a construct" which designates "a number of musics with enough in common to be understood as part of a coherent tradition". In contrast to commentators who have argued for excluding types of jazz, musicians are sometimes reluctant to define the music they play. Duke Ellington, one of jazz's most famous figures, said, "It's all music." Although jazz is considered difficult to define, in part because it contains many subgenres, improvisation is one of its defining elements. The centrality of improvisation is attributed to the influence of earlier forms of music such as blues, a form of folk music which arose in part from the work songs and field hollers of African-American slaves on plantations; these work songs were structured around a repetitive call-and-response pattern, but early blues was improvisational.
Classical music performance is evaluated more by its fidelity to the musical score, with less attention given to interpretation and accompaniment. The classical performer's goal is to play the composition. In contrast, jazz is characterized by the product of i
Jazz fusion is a musical genre that developed in the late 1960s when musicians combined jazz harmony and improvisation with rock music and rhythm and blues. Electric guitars and keyboards that were popular in rock and roll started to be used by jazz musicians those who had grown up listening to rock and roll. Jazz fusion arrangements vary in complexity; some employ groove-based vamps fixed to a single key or a single chord with a simple, repeated melody. Others use elaborate chord progressions, unconventional time signatures, or melodies with counter-melodies; these arrangements, whether simple or complex include improvised sections that can vary in length, much like in other form of jazz. As with jazz, jazz fusion employs brass and woodwind instruments such as trumpet and saxophone, but other instruments substitute for these. A jazz fusion band is less to use piano, double bass, drums, more to use electric guitar, bass guitar, drums; the term "jazz rock" is sometimes used as a synonym for "jazz fusion" and for music performed by late 1960s and 1970s-era rock bands that added jazz elements to their music.
After a decade of popularity during the 1970s, fusion expanded its improvisatory and experimental approaches through the 1980s in parallel with the development of a radio-friendly style called smooth jazz. Experimentation continued in the 2000s. Fusion albums those that are made by the same group or artist, may include a variety of musical styles. Rather than being a codified musical style, fusion can be viewed as approach. In 1967 John Coltrane died, because rock was the most popular genre of music in America, DownBeat magazine declared in a headline that "Jazz as We Know It Is Dead". Guitarist Larry Coryell, sometimes called the godfather of fusion, referred to a generation of musicians who had grown up on rock and roll when he said, "We loved Miles but we loved the Rolling Stones." In 1966 he started the band the Free Spirits with Bob Moses on drums and recorded the band's first album. Out of Sight and Sound was released in 1967, the same year DownBeat began to report on rock music. After the Free Spirits, Coryell was part of a quartet led by vibraphonist Gary Burton, releasing the album Duster with its rock guitar influence.
Burton produced the album Tomorrow Never Knows for Count's Rock Band, which included Coryell, Mike Nock, Steve Marcus, all of them former students at Berklee College in Boston. The pioneers of fusion emphasized exploration, electricity, intensity and volume. Charles Lloyd played a combination of rock and jazz at the Monterey Jazz Festival in 1966 with a quartet that included Keith Jarrett and Jack DeJohnette. Lloyd adopted the trappings of the California psychedelic rock scene by playing at the rock venue the Fillmore, wearing colorful clothes, giving his albums titles like Dream Weaver and Forest Flower, which were bestselling jazz albums in 1967. Flautist Jeremy Steig experimented with jazz in his band Jeremy & the Satyrs with vibraphonist Mike Mainieri; the jazz label Verve released the first album by rock guitarist Frank Zappa in 1966. Rahsaan Roland Kirk performed with Jimi Hendrix at Ronnie Scott's Jazz Club in London. AllMusic states that "until around 1967, the worlds of jazz and rock were nearly separate".
As members of Miles Davis's band, Chick Corea and Herbie Hancock played electric piano on Filles de Kilimanjaro. Davis wrote in his autobiography that in 1968 he had been listening to Jimi Hendrix, James Brown, Sly and the Family Stone; when Davis recorded Bitches Brew in 1969, he abandoned the swing beat in favor of a rock and roll backbeat and bass guitar grooves. The album "mixed free jazz blowing by a large ensemble with electronic keyboards and guitar, plus a dense mix of percussion." Davis played his trumpet like an electric guitar -- pedals. By the end of the first year, Bitches Brew sold 400,000 copies, four times the average for a Miles Davis album. Over the next two years the aloof Davis recorded more worked with many sideman, appeared on television, performed at rock venues. Just as Davis tested the loyalty of rock fans by continuing to experiment, his producer, Teo Macero, inserted recorded material into the Jack Johnson soundtrack, Live-Evil, On the Corner. Although Bitches Brew gave him a gold record, the use of electric instruments and rock beats created consternation among some jazz critics, who accused Davis of betraying the essence of jazz.
Music critic Kevin Fellezs commented that some members of the jazz community regarded rock music as less sophisticated and more commercial than jazz. Davis's 1969 album In a Silent Way is considered his first fusion album. Composed of two side-long improvised suites edited by Teo Macero, the album was made by pioneers of jazz fusion: Corea, Wayne Shorter, Joe Zawinul, John McLaughlin. A Tribute to Jack Johnson has been cited as "the purest electric jazz record made" and "one of the most remarkable jazz rock discs of the era". According to music journalist Zaid Mudhaffer, the term "jazz fusion" was coined in a review of Song of Innocence by David Axelrod when it was released in 1968. Axelrod said. Miles Davis dropped out of music in 1975 because of problems with drugs and alcohol, but his sidemen took advantage of the creative and financial vistas, opened. Herbie Hancock brought elements of funk and electronic music into commercially successful albums such as Head Hunters and Feets, Don't Fail Me Now.
Several years after recording Miles in the Sky with Davis, guitarist George Benson becam
Pressure Sensitive is the debut album by American saxophonist Ronnie Laws released in 1975 by Blue Note. The album reached No. 25 on the Billboard Top Soul Albums chart. Pressure Sensitive was produced by Wayne Henderson of The Crusaders; the AllMusic review by Scott Yanow awarded the album 4½ stars and stated, "this commercial effort can only be recommended in comparison to Ronnie Laws's more inferior recordings". Ronnie Laws - tenor saxophone, soprano saxophone, flute Jerry Peters - electric piano, synthesizer Mike Cavanaugh, Joe Sample - clavinet, electric piano Roland Bautista - guitar John Rowin - guitar Wilton Felder, Clint Mosley - electric bass Steve Guttierez, Michael Willars - drums Joe Clayton - conga, flexatone Side Effect - backing vocals