The United States boasts a rich musical diversity. Early Americans discovered ways to weave European traditions with new cultural influences to compose a unique musical identity. African traditions influenced hymns and folk songs that connected people to religion and to the trials and tribulations of everyday life. Patriotic tunes created unity in wartime. Even now, America’s jazz, blues, rock, and hip-hop continue to evolve from their African-American origins. Music: Investigate the Evolution of American Sound invites kids ages 12 and up to explore the roots of American music genres as they investigate the social, political, and religious influences that inspire musicians. Activities encourage readers to inquire into the art and science of music. Readers can engage in a hands-on exploration of the physics of sound vibrations, decibel levels, and acoustics, or use vocal styling to improvise and discover the rhythm of their bodies to create a beatbox. Music: Investigate the Evolution of American Sound encourages readers to analyze lyrics, their meanings, and rhythms, and then use that analysis to write their own songs.