Somewhere in the ArkLaTex: Boogie woogie - KTBS.com - Shreveport, LA News, Weather and Sports

Somewhere in the ArkLaTex: Boogie woogie

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Marshall, Texas is the birthplace of boogie woogie music which birthed the genres of country music and eventually rock.

The revolution in music started in Marshall. In the pine forest of East Texas, just after the Civil War, there was a confluence of events that changed the world. Newly freed slaves congregated in logging camps, cutting cross ties for the new T&P Railroad.

The bosses depending on these barrel houses to keep their men at work and your job as a piano player in that barrel house is to keep them entertained. You've got your African American percussive rhythmic and also mimicry and that's what boogie woogie is all about; using the piano to mimic the sound of this new big thing that has suddenly appeared in the lives of these people" says Jack Canson.

Even the names of the rifts of this early music style say that it all started in Marshall.

Sandy Canson says it was named after all the stops on the T&P Railroad line; the Jefferson, the Shreveport, the Tyler, the Big Sandy and the earliest and most primitive, the Marshall.

Noted music historian John Tennison says "it had to have happened here." Because of the railroad, it spread to the big bands, country and eventually even rock and roll.

The music that makes the girls scream and the men do strange things, was birthed in the pine forest of East Texas.

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