Jazz In Brussels - History Of Jazz In Belgium 1900-1918
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Porte de Namur 1900
Porte de Namur became one of the most popular places in the upper part of the city, meeting place for the well-to-do and artists. the district then had many cafes, chic restaurants, luxury shops, theaters, and later, movie theaters.
As a result of the colonial period in the history of Belgium, around 1900 there arose an interest in the gay 'Negro music' and their white imitators. Also, many new dances blew over that ousted the polkas, polonaises and other dances. Especially in Antwerp's and Brussels' nightlife, this syncopated music, which had started as a parody, had much success because of the atmosphere and danceability.
While in America the term rag and ragtime were popular, in Belgium it became fashionable to talk about 'intermezzo'. Ragtime was an eclectic mix of styles and a direct precursor to jazz. Many Belgian composers wrote ragtime scores at the time, but unfortunately there are no records left. In the same period, brass bands and military music flourished. The most renowned orchestra, with a number of Belgian musicians, was the American Orchestra of John Philip Sousa. Again, Belgian composers did successful work. An important year for the spread of American popular music was 1903, when John Philip Sousa's band toured in Belgium and performed at the international exposition of Brussels in May.
Louis Fremaux and his ragtime composition "Toboggan", released on the label 'Disque Pathé', was known throughout Europe in 907. It was a golden time for ragtime in Belgium. Also, music of contemporaries like Jack Bruske was widely played or performed in bars, dance halls and theatres.
Louis Fremaux and his ragtime composition "Toboggan", released on the label 'Disque Pathé', was known throughout Europe in 907