The blues is traditionally characterized as devil music and juxtaposed with the spiritual and gospel music that is primarily concerned with religious matters; however, its nature and influence extends well beyond any simple definition. This essay considers the nature and evolution of the blues genre through its emergence along with African Spirituals, to its presence incarnations within seminal rock and rock legends.
In the original development, the Blues and African Spirituals were closely interrelated and share a common reason for emergence. It’s important to consider them in relation to each other as they eventually come to be defined in opposition to each other. When one hears the word spiritual, religion and faith come to mind. When one hears the word blues, naturally one thinks of depression and sadness. As words, spiritual and blues are almost entirely opposite from one another. However, when looked at in a musical standpoint the true definitions, going beyond just words, are actually more similar than they are different. The Spirituals and the Blues may even appear as two totally different genres of music, however these two types of music stem from the same experiences, feeling, and thoughts of the African American civilization. The Spirituals came before the Blue (Spirituals as pre-Civil War; Blues as post-Civil War), the Blues being a result of the Spirituals. Therefore it is true that both the style and sound of the Spirituals and the Blues came from West African Music (Clarke 1995).
The way the music was formed was through the time of slavery. Slavery is the historical background of which the Spirituals and the Blues were created. The Spirituals and the Blues are a musical expression of slaves’ determinations and strengths of survival while living in cruel time of negation. These two genera’s of music are part of a huge piece of history, a portrayal of 300 years of suffering and anguish of the life of slaves. This