What is barbershop music?

Barbershop music is one of very few art forms created in the United States.  It got its start following The Great Crash of the stock market in October 1929, during the resulting depression. 

During that Depression, the men folk not wanting to hang around the house and be subjected to various suggestions and comments from the spouse or the screaming kids, went down to the center of town where all the other men in the same circumstance… no job…  no money… were congregating.

One of the main gathering spots in town was the Barbershop probably because it had several places to sit down.  As time marched slooooowly by, in order to gain some stress relief, some of the men started to sing… and then others joined in creating the close style of harmony that has become known as “Barbershop”.  Since the songs were not written down, the songs were seldom sung the same way twice, and since the music was initially sung in the barber’s shop, it was… and still is… referred to as “Barbershop Harmony”

Jerry Braack

California, USA

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One Response to “What is barbershop music?”

  1. a Sweet Adeline Says:

    Hmmmm … the Great Crash … maybe today’s financial crisis will cause more of us to come together in this enjoyable hobby. Thanks for spreading the word!

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