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How can one define the jazz style hard bop? In which way is it different from bebop? Which are the main characteristics of the style?

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  1. A Return to a more energetic way of playing. Playing "hot", but with more control than in the Bebop which is more accessible to a wider audience.

  2. Bebop's purely harmonic and technical characteristics vanish and make room for a more melodic, smooth style of playing.

  3. The themes are less complicated and more melodic.

  4. A clear influence of Afro-American "roots": gospel and blues.

  5. The drummer's playing is very present, rhythm and polyrhythm gain importance as a result of the African influences.

  6. The use of suspend chords and pedal notes: gospel influence.

  7. The line up is usually a rhythm section and two or three horns.

Comparison: bebop, cool jaz, hard bop.

Comparison

According to this article, there were two factions of hard bop:

1: Funky jazz was relatively simple (simple melodies, simple chord progressions, simple forms); its essence was one of groove and feeling and was heavily influenced by blues and gospel music.

2: Mainstream jazz was far more complex (more difficult melodies, improvisations, chord progressions, and forms); it was still about groove and feeling but added the complexities of bebop; a bit of arranging was often included as well (worked out introductions, endings, harmonized heads, background lines, etc.).

Examples:

Horace Silver’s “Nica’s Dream” (mainstream)

John Coltrane’s “Giant Steps” (mainstream)

Art Blakey’s “Moanin’” (funky jazz)

Miles Davis’ “Walkin'” (funky jazz)

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    ... Bebop which is more accessible to a wider audience. How can you proof your statement? – user1139 Sep 25 '15 at 6:34
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    Mainly black musicians? Really? That's not even comparative across the three tabled genres. – user1604 Mar 14 '16 at 14:25

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