Harlem was commonly called the capital of the Black world and deservedly so in a political and international sense. People from all over Black America, colonial West Indies and colonial Africa gathered and interacted and shared ideas. The Harlem renaissance is the best known aspect of that. (Chicago also had a similar “renaissance” which one might say was more impressive as it was largely self directed,the Harlem movement had heavy Jewish and white liberal influence.)
But Black American culture driver was New Orleans. Home to the birth of Jazz and too some extent the Blues. It was also responsible for the most influential gospel songstress ever. Here is a video of two of its greatest and most influential children. Happy Independence Day!