How smooth jazz took over Aretha Franklin’s musical genius 2 days ago   13:05

You should give smooth jazz a chance.

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Smooth jazz has gotten a bad rap for decades. It’s often associated with background music for elevators or the soundtrack at the dentist office. Smooth jazz is less a genre of music than a highly researched radio format and, although it’s heyday was in the 1990s and it’s mostly associated with Kenny G, its origins go back the mid 1960s when a select few jazz musicians crossed over to pop music and had music purists riling. Artists like Grover Washington Jr. and George Benson took the style to new heights and created the sound that we all know and love….to hate.

How to listen to smooth jazz Spotify playlist:

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Comments 2325 Comments

Love Vox Earworm? Hop onto a live Q&A with Estelle Caswell, the creator behind the series, on December 20 at 5 PM ET by joining the Vox Video Lab, our new membership program on YouTube. She and other creators on our team will bringing you behind the scenes in a completely new way! (And if you missed the livestream, you'd still be able to see a recording).

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Noel Julian
Can you do a video about how Indie Rock came into the world?
Molly Collins
we need more of these !!
Lesley Luna
Can you do a video on Japanese city pop? Very popular on YouTube
Patrick Florence
Nowadays, I can only get my Smooth Jazz from SiriusXM's Watercolors or maybe a Pandora playlist, as it is hard to find on terrestrial radio in most cities today.
golgi apparatus
99.5 kez smooooooth jazz.
Chev Chelios
Best show on music I've come by! Smooth Funk is one my favorite genres, thanks a lot.
10:33 XD, well played vox
NomNom Nom
Vaporwave 👌🏾
Jon Bezeau
Sounds like un-ironic vaporwave wtf
Alice Törnbom
Try staying on track! 1970s biches brew, then jump back to 66? What’s up with that?
Why not talk about a album from that same year?
Alan Senzaki
The difference is that grover washington and george benson are improvising jazz musicians....sadly kenny g is not. If he can improvise he has never shown it. Can't stand his schmaltzy playing. Sorry...Do an album where you improvise on the chord changes and you might win the respect of a whole new audience.
Kazimierz Garshin
Still waiting for the next Earworm. The fact that this last one was about smooth jazz, makes the matter more urgent.
Kenny G is the ish!!
Monkey Trade
This isn't Jazz its Easy Listing. Stop calling it Jazz. Miles will be very upset
Let’s face it, Kenny G looks like Daniel Avidanial.
"Where the hell did smooth jazz come from?"
Elevators. It came from elevators.
Tomo Kodachi
anyone else notice how many times she said, "the peeper" instead if the people
Christine Montero
I love you Estelle!
Crystal Comedy
I hope electro swing that becomes a thing in the 2020s
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Aretha Franklin’s musical genius How smooth jazz took over 2 days ago   09:35

Two songs that show off Aretha Franklin’s gospel roots.

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Aretha Franklin will always be the Queen of Soul. In the 1960s songs like “Respect” became the symbol for political and social change. It’s likely the reason her music moved so many people wasn’t necessarily the lyrics, but the way she delivered them.

Aretha was raised in the church, and her life and music was rooted in gospel music. You can hear this so clearly in her live performances and covers, where every musical decision she made was in the moment.

Listen to any one of Aretha’s songs and you’ll understand the power of gospel music, but her live performance of “Dr. Feelgood” and her cover of “Son of a preacher man” are a great place to start.

Special thanks to Brigitta Johnson, Robert Darden, and Raymond Wise for sharing their expertise in gospel music history.

Note: The title of this video has been updated. It was previously "The gospel according to Aretha Franklin." is a news website that helps you cut through the noise and understand what's really driving the events in the headlines. Check out

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