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With its roots in the blues, jazz has been referred to as America's classical music, yet has also become a major global phenomenon, branching off into a variety of forms. Earlier pioneers like Scott Joplin and Jelly Roll Morton paved the way for the swinging big-band sounds of Louis Armstrong and Duke Ellington. In contrast, contemporaries Dizzie Gillespie, Charlie Parker and Thelonious Monk developed bebop, with its speedy, dissonant harmonies and improvisations. And Miles Davis heralded the birth of cool jazz, modal jazz and fusion at different points in his career. Famous jazz instrumentalists have tended to be male, yet women have been at the forefront of the genre when it comes to vocalization, from the brassy blues of Bessie Smith to the haunting eclecticism of Nina Simone.
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In true Albus Dumbledore fashion, Biography.com examines and provides insight on the cast of the illustrious Harry Potter film series, based on the popular books by author J.K. Rowling. Debuting with Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone and ending with the two-part Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, the eight-part film series continues to wow fans with its tales of witchcraft and wizardry. It also includes a gamut of stars, from Daniel Radcliffe, who plays the famous Harry; to Emma Watson, who plays Harry's best friend, Hermione; to Alan Rickman, known for his villainous role as Severus Snape; to Robert Pattinson, who plays the attractive Cedric Diggory, Harry's Triwizard Tournament rival; and more.
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