the blues

blues

1 [blooz]
noun
1.
the blues, (used with a plural verb) depressed spirits; despondency; melancholy: This rainy spell is giving me the blues.
2.
(used with a singular verb) Jazz.
a.
a song, originating with American blacks, that is marked by the frequent occurrence of blue notes, and that takes the basic form, customarily improvised upon in performance, of a 12-bar chorus consisting of a 3-line stanza with the second line repeating the first.
b.
the genre constituting such songs.

Origin:
1800–10, Americanism; cf. blue devils

bluesy, adjective
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Collins
World English Dictionary
blues (bluːz)
 
pl n
1.  a feeling of depression or deep unhappiness
2.  a type of folk song devised by Black Americans at the beginning of the 20th century, usually employing a basic 12-bar chorus, the tonic, subdominant, and dominant chords, frequent minor intervals, and blue notes
 
'bluesy
 
adj

Blues (bluːz)
 
pl n
(Brit) the Blues the Royal Horse Guards

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

blues
as a music form featuring flatted thirds and sevenths, possibly c.1895 (though officially 1912, in W.C. Handy's "Memphis Blues"); meaning "depression, low spirits" goes back to 1741, from adj. blue "low-spirited," late 14c.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary

blues definition


A kind of jazz that evolved from the music of African-Americans, especially work songs and spirituals, in the early twentieth century. Blues pieces often express worry or depression.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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