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An exacting definition of Creole is not in order for its definitive origins and nature are highly debated. The musical style developed in New Orleans and in areas of the immediate and adjacent South. Lyrically the texts are from the French patois (patter) with which the French used to communicate with slaves. The musical styles/lines were enhanced by Spanish influences, and rhythms were incorporated from the isles of the West Indies. Characteristically, creole music has lilting melodies, syncopated rhythms, and a bit of French lyricism. New Orleans, of course, was a city occupied and influenced by the French and Spanish for a number of years and by the peoples of African descent through their enslavement and their freedom.