Understanding the Music Culture in New York City

Music is a global language.  People in every country on the planet enjoy music native to their culture and way of life.  Music is crucial to a people group’s identity, and people can often times identify where a particular song comes from based on the style of the music alone.  Music is important everywhere in the world and especially in large metropolitan areas like New York City where many different kinds of music developed and grew out of a richly diverse and cultural environment.  Many popular genres of music and famous musicians emerged from the booming music scene in New York City to help create the culture of music present in the United States today.

What types of music originated in New York City?

The music styles developed in New York City are as diverse as the people who lived and currently live there.  Believe it or not, hip hop, doo-wop, disco, and punk music all originated in New York City.  Music styles associated with cultures outside the United States, like salsa, also originated in New York City because of the immigration of people from countries like Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic.  New York also helped increase the popularity of folk, jazz, and blues music.  The big band era brought songs like Frank Sinatra’s “New York,” a song that has become an anthem for the diverse city.  With the developments of the New York Philharmonic and Broadway theatre throughout New York City’s history, the music scene has always had a strong classical influence even while other forms of music were being developed and experimented with.  Bands with worldwide popularity played and even lived in New York City, such as The Beatles.  John Lennon and his family lived in Manhattan and his life and work is now commemorated with Central Park’s Strawberry Fields.  Some great musicians that emerged from the growing music scene of New York City include Paul Simon, the Beastie Boys, Madonna, Thelonios Monk, Ella Fitzgerald, and Jay-Z.

What types of music are popular in New York City today?

Music is such an integral part of New York City that there are tours offered to visitors that focus only on seeing ares of the city directly related to the past and present music scenes.  The Lincoln Theatre in New York has expanded the classical music scene and musical performances.  The Apollo Theatre expresses the importance then and now of jazz, blues, and bebop music to the music culture in New York.  Punk rock’s popularity still continues in the city with bands like The Ramones helping to develop the punk rock scene and expansion of the genre in New York.  The music that was born in New York City continues with popularity today as it still grows and flourishes and inspires new musicians and genre hybrids.  New York City is truly a melting pot of music culture and diversity.

While the cost of living in New York City is high, being immersed in the grand culture of the city is an adventure that can be experienced daily. Some of the most successful artists will be able to afford lofts like these!

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