From country music to funk, R&B and EDM, black musicians have made their mark in just about every popular music genre.

Developed in 1979 by Kenny Gamble, Ed Wright and Dyana Williams, Black Music Month was created to honor the contributions of black musicians, singers, producers and writers. 

As this year's Black Music Month comes to a close, we've gathered inspiring quotes from 25 musicians about their love for music, the joy of creativity and the power of the arts.

“Music is passionate. It's love for me.” - Brandy

“I think music is something that can, and should, be used to get you into different things because eventually what goes up must come down -- we're not going to be the Number One group in the world forever -- so you have to have something else to fall back on.” – Beyonce

“I've always been a firm believer that soul music never dies. The artists we still listen to today, years after their music was first heard, are mostly soul artists: Donny Hathaway, Marvin Gaye, Chaka Khan. We still sing along to all of them with our hearts.” – Jill Scott

“I would hope my legacy would be bringing smiles to faces. Happiness with my music.” – Janet Jackson

“When I look into the crowd, I see young and old, black and white -- it's amazing that I'm able to connect with so many different kinds of people.” – Patti LaBelle

“It is always an honor to work with those that share your passion for music and just enjoy making great music.” - Solange

“I feel that the music that I do is somewhat of a lost art and it's not as popular as dance or pop music and people are not as interested in it. But it's something that I believe in and I feel that it's needed, so that's why I do it and I will keep doing it until everybody hears it and gets it.” – Jazmine Sullivan

“I want to do all types of music, music for all people. I want my music to be encouraging, to help people.” – Fantasia

“I've never recorded anything I didn't like.” - Aretha Franklin

“The best part of making music, for me, is collaborating and working with new people and fresh sounds and all those things that get people excited to continue in this business that we all love so much.” – Mariah Carey

“Soul is about authenticity. Soul is about finding the things in your life that are real and pure.” – John Legend

“People always accuse me of being motivational in a way, like it was a bad thing, but that's just how I was raised. My mom raised me in a positive environment, with lots of love in my heart, and that reflects in my music.” – Lenny Kravitz

“I was born with music inside me. Music was one of my parts. Like my ribs, my kidneys, my liver, my heart. Like my blood. It was a force already within me when I arrived on the scene. It was a necessity for me - like food or water.” – Ray Charles

“Coming into the music industry, even when I was a kid, one thing I learned is timing is everything. You being prepared is everything.” – Kelly Rowland

“I still listen to tracks sometimes and hear some of the harmonies and its just amazing.” – Ameriie

“If you enter this world knowing you are loved and you leave this world knowing the same, then everything that happens in between can be dealt with.” - Michael Jackson

“Musicians don't retire; they stop when there's no more music in them.” – Louis Armstrong

“The wise musicians are those who play what they can master.” – Duke Ellington

“Because the blues is the basis of most American music in the 20th century. It's a 12-bar form that's played by jazz, bluegrass and country musicians. It has a rhythmic vocabulary that's been used by rock n' roll. It's related to spirituals, and even the American fiddle tradition.” – Wynton Marsalis

“As musicians and artists, it's important we have an environment -- and I guess when I say environment, I really mean the industry that really nurtures these gifts. Oftentimes, the machine can overlook the need to take care of the people who produce the sounds that have a lot to do with the health and well-being of society.” – Lauryn Hill

“As musicians, and as people who sell material for people to hear and absorb, it's important that we use that voice wisely.” – Roberta Flack

“Teena Marie was a big influence because she wrote and produced her own music, which let me know that women could write and produce their own music, which was an empowering moment for me.” – Queen Latifah

“I'm inspired by artists and musicians. There are so many wonderful and talented people in the world. I love discovering new music, new writers, or new art.” – Alicia Keys

“I'm not playing for other musicians. We're trying to reach the guy who works all day and wants to spend a buck at night. We'll keep him happy.” – Nat King Cole

“One of my core values is to help redefine what it means to be a strong and beautiful woman in the music and fashion worlds and to empower the wonderful things that make us unique.” – Janelle Monae