The Post-World War II “Chitlin’ Circuit” in San Antonio and the Long-Term Effects of Intercultural Congeniality
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During the 1940s and 1950s, black musicians -- the giants of jazz, R&B, and blues -- traveled the so-called "chitlin' circuit," a network of African-American music venues stretching throughout the American South and Southwest. Although their music is now considered among the greatest that our nation has ever produced, at the time, these artists faced widespread racial discrimination, and most were not allowed to play in the more prominent venues available to white performers. This not only limited the black artists' ability to earn money, but it also prevented their music from reaching a larger audience. As a result, some of the most talented musicians of the era would never enjoy the financial success or public recognition of their white counterparts.