An interesting phenomenon takes place in the world of nature when the larvae of the Monarch butterfly goes through the period of metamorphosis in the protective cover of the cocoon, and emerges as one of the most beautiful butterflies in North America. This phenomenon seems to be an appropriate metaphor to use in our discussion of the African-American Music Idiom. This idiom was developed and nurtured in the "cocoon" of the Black Church, while undergoing the "metamorphosis" of slavery, second-class citizenship, and segregation and emerge as the beautiful Black musical, "Butterfly," which stands at the very foundation of the only true American music. A casual look at the world of popular music would reveal that African-American music and musicians are being imitated the world over. As Dave Clark, the leader of a British Group in the fifties called, The Dave Clark Five, stated in an interview almost three decades ago, "we are all trying to sing colored."
"The Black Church: The 'Cocoon' for the Black 'Butterfly' and the African-American Music Idiom,"
Trotter Review: Vol. 10
, Article 6.
Available at: http://scholarworks.umb.edu/trotter_review/vol10/iss2/6