Soul music refers to various genres of popular music that were pioneered by Black Americans during the 1960s. Genres such as rhythm and blues (R&B) and Motown became associated with civil rights struggles during this period.
Other genres, such as southern soul, originated at Stax Records in Memphis, Tennessee where Otis Redding and Wilson Pickett performed with house bands at FAME Studios in Muscle Shoals Alabama.
1. Who wrote the song “I’m Every Woman”?
From jazz age melodies to hip-hop rhythms, black artists have played an invaluable role in shaping and enriching global music history. Put your knowledge of black music history through this fascinating quiz!
Nick Ashford and Valerie Simpson of Ashford & Simpson wrote the song, which first made its debut appearance on Chaka Khan’s 1978 solo debut album and later recorded by Whitney Houston for The Bodyguard soundtrack.
Tena Clark released a remix version of “Let It Go” in 2021 to support international humanitarian agency CARE’s #IMEVERYWOMAN global women’s empowerment campaign, featuring Idina Menzel and Chaka Khan singing duet vocals that reached number one on the UK Singles Chart and featured scenes from The Bodyguard movie in its video for release in 2020.
2. Who co-founded a classic R&B group?
Otis Redding came from a musical family and developed an intense devotion to gospel music from an early age. His unique raspy vocal style allowed him to imbue each song with strong emotion; hence the moniker, “King of Soul”. Redding achieved chart-topping hits throughout his career – more than one even reaching number one on Billboard charts!
R&B music is an eclectic genre blending jazz, soulful blues and gospel influences into its distinct sound. Curtis Mayfield first made waves when The Impressions emerged as pioneers of socially aware soul music in the late ’50s and ’60s; his songs about racial injustice, poverty, drugs and love made him an iconic figure in music history. Tony! Toni! Tone! is another iconic R&B group featuring Raphael Saadiq who played multiple instruments within this trio as part of its membership.
3. Who is the “Queen of Neo-Soul”?
Neo soul music fuses contemporary R&B with jazz, hip hop and African influences for an innovative hybrid genre that has gained widespread appeal. Considered “new soul”, Neo soul has experienced significant popularity over recent years.
Erykah Badu is one of the premier neo soul singers. Beginning her career as D’Angelo’s backing vocalist, her debut album Brown Sugar quickly established itself as an instant classic and led her to becoming one of the leading acts in neo soul charts. Voodoo released in 2002 was even better and catapulted Erykah to superstar status within this genre.
Badu’s 2007 album New Amerykah Part One marked a departure in her style and approach; she took more of a political approach while recruiting hip hop artists such as Mos Def and 9th Wonder for assistance. This album became a smash hit and cemented Badu as the Queen of Neo-Soul music.
4. Who is the “High Priestess of Soul”?
Nina Simone was an iconic musician widely revered as the “High Priestess of Soul.” Known for her eclectic style and involvement in civil rights activism, she made audiences completely immerse themselves in her music.
On her 1967 album High Priestess of Soul, Simone is joined by a large orchestra led by Hal Mooney. This album showcases Simone’s impressive vocal ability and versatility – including both pop songs as well as more serious African American gospel and folk-related tracks.
Simone was born in North Carolina’s Tryon. At first she wanted to become a concert pianist; even spending summers studying piano at the Julliard School. However, after being denied admission into Philadelphia’s Curtis Institute and ultimately choosing singing as her passion instead.
5. Who is the “King of Soul”?
Otis Redding was widely recognized as the “King of Soul,” due to his blend of rhythm and blues with soul music that appealed to both black and white audiences alike. Additionally, Redding is widely credited with popularizing gospel music within the mainstream audience.
Solomon Burke was another soul artist who played an essential part in connecting rhythm and blues to soul music. Known for his skill singing gospel music, he quickly rose to become one of the most beloved figures during the 60s.
Aretha Franklin quickly established herself as one of the premier soul artists with her remarkable vocal abilities, becoming famous through her hit single, “A Natural Woman.” Much of her style developed from performing religious songs in church settings.
6. Who is the “Queen of Hip-Hop”?
Mary J Blige rose to international stardom with the release of her 1992 debut album “What’s the 411?” It marked a groundbreaking album, seamlessly merging R&B, hip-hop and soul into one cohesive experience; Blige’s authentic storytelling and heartbreaking vocals instantly established her as a global icon.
Missy Elliott has made history through her innovative production and clever lyrics, setting the foundation for female rappers such as Nicki Minaj and Cardi B. Her groundbreaking music has cemented her legacy as one of the most influential female rappers ever; her iconic rhymes have touched upon AIDS, gun violence and domestic abuse; in addition to her musical career she has appeared in movies and television shows and sold over 100 million albums worldwide – often being called the “Queen of Hip-Hop” or the “Empress of Rap”.
7. Who is the “Empress of the Blues”?
Bessie Smith was an African-American blues singer widely recognized during the Jazz Age. Often dubbed as “Empress of the Blues” due to her seductive and sensual singing style, Smith became one of the highest-paid African American performers during her era.
Romare Bearden’s 1974 painting of Smith captures her commanding presence onstage. At six feet, Smith has inspired generations of performers such as Billie Holiday and Mahalia Jackson.
In this episode, we will gain more insight into Smith’s life and music. We will hear from some of her influences as well as discover why she was known as the “Empress of Blues.” Lastly, we’ll learn what made her truly extraordinary.
8. Who is the “Queen of Jazz”?
Ella Fitzgerald earned the moniker “Queen of Jazz” because of her superior musical talent. A versatile performer who could switch effortlessly between opera, jazz, and Broadway songs; Ella was famed for her perfect diction, phrasing, timing and intonation; making Billboard’s Top 100 artists chart in six consecutive decades – an achievement few women jazz artists can match!
Northern Soul music originated in the UK. It became increasingly popular through DJs spinning at sweaty club venues like Manchester’s Twisted Wheel. Which 1964 recording is considered one of the first classic Northern Soul tracks? Who recorded it?
9. Who is the “Queen of Pop”?
Black musicians have had an immense impact on global music scene since its creation. This quiz explores black music history to demonstrate its resonant effects on modern culture.
Aretha Franklin reigns as the undisputed “Queen of Pop.” Her legendary hits from the 1960s and ’70s topped charts worldwide and remain timeless classics today, her powerful vocals impressing crowds at her live performances.
Beyonce is widely revered as the “Queen of Pop,” for her ability to produce hit records that dominate charts worldwide. First rising to fame through Destiny’s Child, Beyonce quickly established herself as a solo artist selling millions of albums as well as creating her own perfume and clothing lines.
10. Who is the “Queen of R&B”?
Mary J. Blige has long been recognized as one of the foremost R&B singers, earning the moniker Queen of Hip-Hop Soul because of her distinctive blend of R&B and hip-hop music. With powerful vocals and thoughtful lyrics that remain evergreen in R&B circles.
Aretha Franklin is one of the world’s best-known soul singers and has earned the enviable title of “Queen of R&B”. Her vibrant performances and emotive performances have reached millions around the world and become part of global pop culture. Marvin Gaye stands as another iconic soul singer; many regard him as one of the greatest romantic crooners ever; his sensual songs helped shape R&B music genre and culture as we know it today.