The roots of the blues have similarities in the instruments, music and social functions with the griots of Savanna.
The blues is a musical genre that appeared in the second half of the XIXth century in the cities of the south of the United States, straight derived from the hollers or shouts and the work songs of the cotton plantations. It is a music, then, of African origin and social character, but unlike the ancient songs of work or field screams full of rhythm and discipline, she represents the relief of the interpreter, who was allowing to show its pain, oppression, desires, etc. It has led to some authors, to considering the blues to be the first music of African origin, entirely jacket.
The etnomusicologo Gerhard Kubik affirms that certain elements of the blues have its roots in the music of the Islamic countries of the central and western part of Africa:
The stringed instruments (the preferred ones by the slaves proceeding from the Moslem regions of Africa), they were generally authorized since the proprietors of the slaves were thinking that the above mentioned instruments were alike other European instruments, like the violin. Due to it, those slaves who were capable of touching a banjo, or another stringed instrument, could do it with major freedom. This type of solitary music of slave shows elements of an Arab – Islamic style based on the trace that the Islam has printed for centuries in West Africa
The blues, like musical structure, adopted a format of twelve compases that depends of armonias keynotes and domineering and subdomineering chords, in addition to the use of the called note of blues. East format was strange for the musicians of European tradition, especially for the length of the same one. But the blues musicians, with its roots in the work songs and other music of the type call and response, were used to these bosses asimétricos.
The role of the blues in the history of the jazz is essential, being content like the “spine” of este. Like genre it developed its own history and its own styles sometimes fused with the same jazz, but as «he structures compositiva» it has integrated the basic repertoire of all the styles of jazz that have existed.
The first recognized blues musicians were Robert Johnson, Blind Lemon Jefferson, Charlie Patton, There are House or Leadbelly, between different Robert Johnson keeps on being most known about the singers of delta blues of the Mississippi, although it did not go so far as to sell many discs up to its death.