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When did Jazz die?

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  • tommersl
    This is a question that always comes up in medium level discussion groups, so I thought bringing it to high level will give some insights. Everybody knows Jazz
    Message 1 of 30 , Mar 16, 2007
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      This is a question that always comes up in medium level discussion
      groups, so I thought bringing it to high level will give some
      insights. Everybody knows Jazz wasn't as good as the early days. I
      think labels like Blue Note sold themselves bringing up lousy bands
      without the tight swing of the 1920's. They took away the essential
      preferences and sold the people the new gods, like it was Rock music.
      The music was deteriorated as time went by, the mainstream didn't have
      a place to go, musicians were borrowing rhythms and other elements
      from outer genres not in order to fuse it into Jazz form but like Rock
      bands to use it as is although it wasn't anything like real Jazz. The
      public was marketed with the new form thinking by what the "Jazz"
      labels of the time said it's the real deal, and soon real Jazz bands
      were considered out of fashion and the new thing was titled as Jazz.
      I'm looking forwards to insights about this problem and why people
      today recognize Jazz not as the real form of it but the substitute
      they were given by labels and critics ever since the late 1940's. I
      also wonder whether theres or not a book about this.
      Tommersl
    • Patrice Champarou
      ... From: tommersl ... Sorry, Tommer, I am probably not part of the everybody you re mentioning. I think it is always interesting to discuss the
      Message 2 of 30 , Mar 16, 2007
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        ----- Original Message -----
        From: "tommersl"

        > Everybody knows Jazz wasn't as good as the early days.

        Sorry, Tommer, I am probably not part of the "everybody" you're mentioning.

        I think it is always interesting to discuss the peculiarities or early jazz,
        which were the reasons for me to create this group, compared to post-war and
        contemporary music; but I guess you will have a hard time convincing
        everybody that jazz ever died. Even if you do think so (which has nothing to
        do with each and everyone's appreciation of the musical quality) there must
        be a better starting point than just stating this as if everybody here was
        stuck in the past ;-)

        Patrice
      • tommersl
        Patrice, I m talking about the way Jazz was advancing downward over the years. It started as something very actual. What I meant is that many Jazz fans prefer
        Message 3 of 30 , Mar 16, 2007
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          Patrice, I'm talking about the way Jazz was advancing downward over
          the years. It started as something very actual. What I meant is that
          many Jazz fans prefer to go back in time in order to hear Jelly Roll
          Morton and Louis Armstrong in their peak rather than listen to
          today's Jazz. There was a process that I'm talking about that made
          Jazz not appealing as it used to be. In the process Jazz became what
          it is today, it goes nowhere. And the thing that worries is that
          someone tries to market the 1960's Jazz more than it's worth. There
          are Rock fans that prey on Coltrane but they don't know that there's
          a real Jazz to consume. I think big labels that started well like
          Blue Note were later going into a whale suicide affect on Jazz that
          lives us with not much future. And it started when they grabbed un-
          naturaly the Jazz leading from the hands of African-American audience
          and went into directions of Classical music ideas that were decided
          by expert critics in order to expand their sales to broader crowds
          and to open the gates to musicians that were playing outer to Jazz
          music that seems "advanced", "energetic" and etc. I'm not saying it's
          a good or no good music, just that it's not the way Jazz would evolve
          naturally.
          Tommersl

          --- In RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com, "Patrice Champarou"
          <patrice.champarou@...> wrote:
          >
          > ----- Original Message -----
          > From: "tommersl"
          >
          > > Everybody knows Jazz wasn't as good as the early days.
          >
          > Sorry, Tommer, I am probably not part of the "everybody" you're
          mentioning.
          >
          > I think it is always interesting to discuss the peculiarities or
          early jazz,
          > which were the reasons for me to create this group, compared to
          post-war and
          > contemporary music; but I guess you will have a hard time
          convincing
          > everybody that jazz ever died. Even if you do think so (which has
          nothing to
          > do with each and everyone's appreciation of the musical quality)
          there must
          > be a better starting point than just stating this as if everybody
          here was
          > stuck in the past ;-)
          >
          > Patrice
          >
        • Hugh Crozier
          I am firmly with Patrice on this. Of course classic jazz has not died. Variants calling themselves mainstream or modern may have died, or may not, I am not
          Message 4 of 30 , Mar 16, 2007
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            I am firmly with Patrice on this. Of course classic jazz has not died. Variants calling themselves 'mainstream' or 'modern' may have died, or may not, I am not really interested in those. I am also not interested in trad, although, to be fair, that is how I discovered classic jazz.

            Last weekend I was was playing with George Huxley who likes to model his soprano sax playing on Bechet and his clarinet work on Dodds. He is very popular, especially in the Midlands, and it is great for me to play classic jazz. It is a performance art. As long as there are people who want to perform it, it will never 'die', in the same way that Mozart's work will never 'die' while there are publishers willing to publish it.#

            Hugh


            ----- Original Message ----
            From: tommersl <tommersl@...>
            To: RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com
            Sent: Friday, 16 March, 2007 11:36:23 PM
            Subject: [RedHotJazz] Re: When did Jazz die?

            Patrice, I'm talking about the way Jazz was advancing downward over
            the years. It started as something very actual. What I meant is that
            many Jazz fans prefer to go back in time in order to hear Jelly Roll
            Morton and Louis Armstrong in their peak rather than listen to
            today's Jazz. There was a process that I'm talking about that made
            Jazz not appealing as it used to be. In the process Jazz became what
            it is today, it goes nowhere. And the thing that worries is that
            someone tries to market the 1960's Jazz more than it's worth. There
            are Rock fans that prey on Coltrane but they don't know that there's
            a real Jazz to consume. I think big labels that started well like
            Blue Note were later going into a whale suicide affect on Jazz that
            lives us with not much future. And it started when they grabbed un-
            naturaly the Jazz leading from the hands of African-American audience
            and went into directions of Classical music ideas that were decided
            by expert critics in order to expand their sales to broader crowds
            and to open the gates to musicians that were playing outer to Jazz
            music that seems "advanced", "energetic" and etc. I'm not saying it's
            a good or no good music, just that it's not the way Jazz would evolve
            naturally.
            Tommersl

            --- In RedHotJazz@yahoogro ups.com, "Patrice Champarou"
            <patrice.champarou@ ...> wrote:
            >
            > ----- Original Message -----
            > From: "tommersl"
            >
            > > Everybody knows Jazz wasn't as good as the early days.
            >
            > Sorry, Tommer, I am probably not part of the "everybody" you're
            mentioning.
            >
            > I think it is always interesting to discuss the peculiarities or
            early jazz,
            > which were the reasons for me to create this group, compared to
            post-war and
            > contemporary music; but I guess you will have a hard time
            convincing
            > everybody that jazz ever died. Even if you do think so (which has
            nothing to
            > do with each and everyone's appreciation of the musical quality)
            there must
            > be a better starting point than just stating this as if everybody
            here was
            > stuck in the past ;-)
            >
            > Patrice
            >






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          • Rick Hensel
            Greetings. I m a new member to this site. I joined two days ago. I ve always been a jazz fan; mostly Big Band, Swing, Dixieland, and the Hot jazz of the
            Message 5 of 30 , Mar 16, 2007
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              Greetings.

              I'm a new member to this site. I joined two days ago. I've always been a jazz fan; mostly Big Band, Swing, Dixieland, and the "Hot" jazz of the 20's & 30's. While I can tolerate some of Charlie Parker's stuff, and enjoy Dave Brubeck, Buddy Rich and George Benson here and there, I say, "Give me the JASS that was meant to be, from the 1890's to the early 1940's", and skip Bebop, (con)Fusion and most of the "newer" stuff!

              My wife and I just watched the entire 9-tape Ken Burns "Jazz" video series.....twice in the past two months. She has come to appreciate jazz music--and the early, great stuff--ten times as much as she used to!

              I've been doing a research piece on jazz musicians and influential people, as a follow-up to the tapes, and am enjoying learning quite a bit about the whole thing. I found the site as a cross-reference from the "Red Hot Jazz" information site.

              I hope I'll have as much fun getting into lively discussion with other members here, on occasion.

              Rick



              Hugh Crozier <jellyrollstomp@...> wrote:
              I am firmly with Patrice on this. Of course classic jazz has not died. Variants calling themselves 'mainstream' or 'modern' may have died, or may not, I am not really interested in those. I am also not interested in trad, although, to be fair, that is how I discovered classic jazz.

              Last weekend I was was playing with George Huxley who likes to model his soprano sax playing on Bechet and his clarinet work on Dodds. He is very popular, especially in the Midlands, and it is great for me to play classic jazz. It is a performance art. As long as there are people who want to perform it, it will never 'die', in the same way that Mozart's work will never 'die' while there are publishers willing to publish it.#

              Hugh

              ---------------------------------
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              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            • paul gronemeier
              Heyyyy very good question....being a piano player...ive asked this question since the 70s. When was OUR music gonna run out?! Back then i enjoyed
              Message 6 of 30 , Mar 16, 2007
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                Heyyyy very good question....being a piano player...ive asked this question since the 70s. When was OUR music gonna run out?! Back then i enjoyed playing And talking to those people that actually heard And lived that music...they would have 5 or 6 drinks and sing.... but as time went along there were fewer and fewer.... until the 90s when they would even bring their own popcorn and drink water.....<bar owners dont make much on that> lol you would have to be 100+years old now to know this music now and im sure theyre not big drinkers. There are a lot of good festivals and musicians out there still but im afraid just like the jigs and reels of the civil war days in the years to come theres not gonna be a big calling or remembering of this music that We love.

                Patrice Champarou <patrice.champarou@...> wrote: ----- Original Message -----
                From: "tommersl"

                > Everybody knows Jazz wasn't as good as the early days.

                Sorry, Tommer, I am probably not part of the "everybody" you're mentioning.

                I think it is always interesting to discuss the peculiarities or early jazz,
                which were the reasons for me to create this group, compared to post-war and
                contemporary music; but I guess you will have a hard time convincing
                everybody that jazz ever died. Even if you do think so (which has nothing to
                do with each and everyone's appreciation of the musical quality) there must
                be a better starting point than just stating this as if everybody here was
                stuck in the past ;-)

                Patrice






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              • Patrice Champarou
                I am afraid I still do not understand the question (or did it contain the reply already?) I suppose everyone is free to fix their own limits to what they
                Message 7 of 30 , Mar 17, 2007
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                  I am afraid I still do not understand the question (or did it contain the
                  reply already?)

                  I suppose everyone is free to fix their own limits to what they consider as
                  real jazz, and I guess there will be as many different replies as members on
                  this list. Some will even consider there is no real difference between
                  Lester Young and Archie Shepp, others will declare that jazz started dying
                  in the 30's (wasn't Morton's piece called "Dirty, Dirty, Dirty" a parody of
                  swing?) but I doubt this can lead us anywhere.

                  This is no place for me to explain why I consider John Coltrane's Alabama as
                  a masterpiece or why Thelonious Monk is the one I would take to the desert
                  island. I reject the idea of "downgrading" just as much as the concept of
                  "progress" applied to music, and if the original question concerned the
                  evolution of styles, I doubt that marketing purposes or the introduction of
                  long-playing recording by Blue Note played a greater part than what the
                  musicians wished to play and what the audience expected to hear.
                  Everyone is free to hate Gillespie or Bud Powell, but considering that their
                  music is no longer jazz is another thing, which cannot rely on shortcuts. I
                  remember some literature around Panassié's "battle" which introduced an
                  artificial play on the word "bop", so as to explain that Gene Vincent and
                  Charlie Parker played exactly the same "modern thing"! Here I cannot help
                  protesting that I never met a Rock fan who payed any attention to post-war
                  jazz, which they consider as too intellectual - and talking about "gods", I
                  wonder if we can still find anything as superlative as what my or your
                  parents said about Armstrong or Bix, at least in the jazz field (the only
                  "God" being, as everyone knows, Eric Clapton! ;-)))
                  If the complaint is about so little space being devoted to pre-war music in
                  record shops while Miles Davis or Keith Jarrett are oll over the place, I
                  can join, but have things ever been better? There have never been so many -
                  and so affordable - reissues than today, you can always state that they are
                  too confidential but I prefer seeing the place flooded with Blue Note
                  reissues than seeing Sinatra, the Four Tops, Presley or ZZ Top filed under
                  "jazz"!
                  And as far as more and more jazz lovers turning to musicians of the past,
                  why complain? It is no-one's fault if there haven't been any Mortons or J.S.
                  Bachs for a while, it is just the way music changes - and you won't force
                  the African-American audience to support styles that were clearly related to
                  segregation, prohibition, depression and misery, and the most incredible
                  unequality - this is purely intellectual nostalgia which only wealthy
                  intellectual whites can afford, just like regretting the good old times of
                  hard work from sun to sun on the Mississippi Delta plantations which
                  produced such fascinating blues!

                  Patrice
                • eupher dude
                  part of the problem is the perception of old time jazz as not being real jazz. I was told by a board member of a local jazz support group that they only
                  Message 8 of 30 , Mar 17, 2007
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                    part of the problem is the perception of "old time jazz" as not being 'real'
                    jazz. I was told by a board member of a local jazz support group that they
                    "only support real jazz", meaning I don't know what.

                    That jazz--the bop, cool, fusion, whatever--might not be dead, but it only
                    has a small life support system, which is really only the players. IMO,
                    they are styles for the informed, not the casual listener. And, while I
                    don't claim to be the most talented ear-wise, I have a fairly advanced
                    ability to hear in the jazz sense. But, I still don't get it.

                    steve

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                  • redw1ne
                    Hello, I m a new member and first time poster. I m a professional clarinetist (both jazz and classical) in the Washington, D.C. area. As for this topic, I
                    Message 9 of 30 , Mar 17, 2007
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                      Hello,

                      I'm a new member and first time poster.

                      I'm a professional clarinetist (both jazz and classical) in the
                      Washington, D.C. area.

                      As for this topic, I think the original poster was trying to be
                      provocative. In truth, as long as there are performers and listeners
                      of jazz, it is not dead. One can like or dislike a sub-genre of
                      jazz, but I think it is unfair to denounce any of it, even if this
                      forum is for pre-war jazz or if you don't like it. The fact is that
                      all great performers of all sub-genres of jazz do what they do very
                      well. Even though I don't necessarily like the "new" jazz, I can
                      appreciate what performers do in that sub-genre. For my playing, I'm
                      definitely influenced by all forms of jazz that I've listened to, but
                      I've found my niche in what I call "old" jazz. I prefer to recreate
                      the notes of the past from the 1920s on through Artie Shaw (my
                      idol). That being said, I'm sure that some more modern harmonies
                      creep into my playing, just because I've listened to more modern
                      players. My sound is definitely not like the old players, but more
                      modern. Please feel free to contact me personally, if you are
                      interested in going to any of my concerts in the D.C. area!

                      Ben Redwine
                      www.redwinejazz.com
                      --- In RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com, "eupher dude" <eupher61@...> wrote:
                      >
                      > part of the problem is the perception of "old time jazz" as not
                      being 'real'
                      > jazz. I was told by a board member of a local jazz support group
                      that they
                      > "only support real jazz", meaning I don't know what.
                      >
                      > That jazz--the bop, cool, fusion, whatever--might not be dead, but
                      it only
                      > has a small life support system, which is really only the players.
                      IMO,
                      > they are styles for the informed, not the casual listener. And,
                      while I
                      > don't claim to be the most talented ear-wise, I have a fairly
                      advanced
                      > ability to hear in the jazz sense. But, I still don't get it.
                      >
                      > steve
                      >
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                    • Lluis Sala
                      I am thousands of light years away from the knowledge of most of you frequent posters in this list, but I can t resist give my layman insights on this. By
                      Message 10 of 30 , Mar 17, 2007
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                        I am thousands of light years away from the knowledge of most of you
                        frequent posters in this list, but I can't resist give my layman insights on
                        this.

                        By reading Ted Gioia's "History of jazz" 6-7 years ago I was able to
                        understand why some artists and some records where key in the history of
                        jazz. It was my perception that from early days jazz headed to a dead end
                        with free jazz (which I don't understand, musically speaking). So, since
                        then, it's probably been mostly about revivals, recreations, etc. of the
                        different styles, but not true innovations as they happened in the 20's and
                        30's. Maybe it's so simple as that eveything -or almost everything- has been
                        invented in this idiom and that the pioneers will always be admired and
                        recognized, as it happens in every aspect of life.

                        I don't know if I went too off-topic, but this is my perception.

                        Cheers,

                        Lluis Sala
                        Girona, Spain
                        http://lsala66.spaces.live.com/
                      • tobinpreston@netscape.net
                        One might as well ask When did Ragtime die ?, or When did Strauss waltzes die? or when did the Bible or the Koran become irrelevant and extinct? jazz like
                        Message 11 of 30 , Mar 17, 2007
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                          One might as well ask "When did Ragtime die ?, or When did Strauss waltzes die? or when did the Bible or the Koran become irrelevant and extinct? jazz like emotion lies in the bones and soul of the musician and the listener.


                          -----Original Message-----
                          From: eupher61@...
                          To: RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com
                          Sent: Sat, 17 Mar 2007 9:34 AM
                          Subject: Re: [RedHotJazz] When did Jazz die?


                          part of the problem is the perception of "old time jazz" as not being 'real'
                          jazz. I was told by a board member of a local jazz support group that they
                          "only support real jazz", meaning I don't know what.

                          That jazz--the bop, cool, fusion, whatever--might not be dead, but it only
                          has a small life support system, which is really only the players. IMO,
                          they are styles for the informed, not the casual listener. And, while I
                          don't claim to be the most talented ear-wise, I have a fairly advanced
                          ability to hear in the jazz sense. But, I still don't get it.

                          steve

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                        • Patrice Champarou
                          Hello Ben Many thanks for your post, I think most of the old-time (and still young) players I know would have said about the same thing. I also guess the
                          Message 12 of 30 , Mar 17, 2007
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                            Hello Ben

                            Many thanks for your post, I think most of the "old-time" (and still young)
                            players I know would have said about the same thing. I also guess the
                            "original poster" meant to ask a real question, anyway I am also grateful to
                            Tommer for encouraging so many previously silent members to post in no time
                            ;-)
                            Jazz is such a wide field that I suppose no-one can claim to be equally fond
                            of each style or each period, but the really important thing is that the
                            audience can still find what they like, even if some think that such or such
                            type of playing or repertoire is "outdated" or, on the contrary, too far
                            away from the "roots". There has been (and still is) an unexpected and
                            outstanding rebirth of Django-like "Gypsy Swing" in France for the past ten
                            years (or something), and as far as I can remember this type of jazz never
                            lost the audience's support. You can hear a good deal of old-time bands in
                            Paris (le Petit Journal welcomes several bands supported by the HCF) and
                            many small festivals are devoted to traditional jazz. Boogie-Woogie pianist
                            Jean-Paul Amouroux once told me that his greatest satisfaction was to hear
                            people say something like "I don't like jazz, but I love what you do". Who
                            cares, as long as the music is alive?

                            I suppose it would be interesting, but somewhat off-topic, to wonder if the
                            birth of the "New Thing" really resulted into a dead end. I cannot help
                            linking this perspective to the predictions which accompanied free jazz...
                            Abert Ayler never killed Jazz, and Archie Shepp ended up learning harmony;
                            musicians remain musicians, even if they happen to get involved in funny
                            experimentation at definite periods of time. And if one accepts to ignore
                            the critics' verbiage (I think "waffle" is not clearly understood across the
                            pond;-), see and hear what is actually played rather than crying over the
                            most fashionable "tendencies", or the pompous declarations of some
                            disappointed, pessimistic avant-garde musicians regarding the death of
                            syncopated and harmonically structured music, there are good reasons to
                            think that jazz is here to stay.
                            Maybe with no new revolution before years, only clumsy (and IMO nasty)
                            attemps to dissove it into various mixtures... but I do not think we will
                            ever reach the point where all types of living music boil down to a uniform
                            magma, that would mean there is nothing left to mix! ;-)

                            Patrice


                            ----- Original Message -----
                            From: "redw1ne" <clarinet@...>
                            To: <RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com>
                            Sent: Saturday, March 17, 2007 3:58 PM
                            Subject: [RedHotJazz] Re: When did Jazz die?


                            Hello,

                            I'm a new member and first time poster.

                            I'm a professional clarinetist (both jazz and classical) in the
                            Washington, D.C. area.

                            As for this topic, I think the original poster was trying to be
                            provocative. In truth, as long as there are performers and listeners
                            of jazz, it is not dead. One can like or dislike a sub-genre of
                            jazz, but I think it is unfair to denounce any of it, even if this
                            forum is for pre-war jazz or if you don't like it. The fact is that
                            all great performers of all sub-genres of jazz do what they do very
                            well. Even though I don't necessarily like the "new" jazz, I can
                            appreciate what performers do in that sub-genre. For my playing, I'm
                            definitely influenced by all forms of jazz that I've listened to, but
                            I've found my niche in what I call "old" jazz. I prefer to recreate
                            the notes of the past from the 1920s on through Artie Shaw (my
                            idol). That being said, I'm sure that some more modern harmonies
                            creep into my playing, just because I've listened to more modern
                            players. My sound is definitely not like the old players, but more
                            modern. Please feel free to contact me personally, if you are
                            interested in going to any of my concerts in the D.C. area!

                            Ben Redwine
                          • Robert Greenwood
                            -Patrice, you wrote: ... you won t force the African-American audience to support styles that were clearly related to segregation, prohibition, depression and
                            Message 13 of 30 , Mar 17, 2007
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                              -Patrice, you wrote:
                              "... you won't force the African-American audience to support styles that were clearly
                              related to
                              segregation, prohibition, depression and misery, and the most incredible
                              unequality - this is purely intellectual nostalgia which only wealthy
                              intellectual whites can afford, just like regretting the good old times of
                              hard work from sun to sun on the Mississippi Delta plantations which
                              produced such fascinating blues!"

                              I'm never sure what people mean when they link the jazz of the past with "segregation,
                              prohibition, depression and misery, and the most incredible unequality" It's true, of
                              course, to say that the musicians who produced the music had to live under these
                              intolerable conditions, but surely they produced music of such genius and beauty that it
                              represents an heroic transcendence of those conditions? Would it not rather be purely
                              "intellectual" for someone hearing, say, the Jelly Roll Morton Red Hot Peppers recordings,
                              or the Louis Hot Fives & Sevens, only to "hear" in them the evidence of segregation,
                              prohibition, depression and misery? I, for one, do not believe that anyone, without some
                              effort of will, like some whining adolescent determined to make themselves profoundly
                              miserable, could sincerely hear all that in the music. If they do, then this is yet another
                              example of white, middle class self-loathing and self-flagellation that surely dishonours
                              the music and the people who produced it.
                              Robert Greenwood
                            • Patrice Champarou
                              ... From: Robert Greenwood To: Sent: Saturday, March 17, 2007 7:45 PM Subject: [RedHotJazz]
                              Message 14 of 30 , Mar 17, 2007
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                                ----- Original Message -----
                                From: "Robert Greenwood" <robertgreenwood_54uk@...>
                                To: <RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com>
                                Sent: Saturday, March 17, 2007 7:45 PM
                                Subject: [RedHotJazz] Re: When did Jazz die?


                                > -Patrice, you wrote:
                                > "... you won't force the African-American audience to support styles that
                                > were clearly
                                > related to
                                > segregation, prohibition, depression and misery, and the most incredible
                                > unequality - this is purely intellectual nostalgia which only wealthy
                                > intellectual whites can afford, just like regretting the good old times of
                                > hard work from sun to sun on the Mississippi Delta plantations which
                                > produced such fascinating blues!"
                                >
                                > I'm never sure what people mean when they link the jazz of the past with
                                > "segregation,
                                > prohibition, depression and misery, and the most incredible unequality"
                                > It's true, of
                                > course, to say that the musicians who produced the music had to live under
                                > these
                                > intolerable conditions, but surely they produced music of such genius and
                                > beauty that it
                                > represents an heroic transcendence of those conditions? Would it not
                                > rather be purely
                                > "intellectual" for someone hearing, say, the Jelly Roll Morton Red Hot
                                > Peppers recordings,
                                > or the Louis Hot Fives & Sevens, only to "hear" in them the evidence of
                                > segregation,
                                > prohibition, depression and misery? I, for one, do not believe that
                                > anyone, without some
                                > effort of will, like some whining adolescent determined to make themselves
                                > profoundly
                                > miserable, could sincerely hear all that in the music. If they do, then
                                > this is yet another
                                > example of white, middle class self-loathing and self-flagellation that
                                > surely dishonours
                                > the music and the people who produced it.
                                > Robert Greenwood

                                Hum! Did I ever say that the music itself expressed anything of the kind???

                                I don't even think it was "transcending" everyday life by any means other
                                than being purely recreative, efficient for dancers, and usually joyful. I
                                just meant that, whatever its instant meaning, music was always "dated" and
                                that the memory of *that* past was no convincing reason for the colored
                                audience to hold on to what musicologists consider as their necessary
                                heritage.

                                I could go on with the serious case of young ladies who dress up in the
                                1920's fashion and do some role-playing, complaining that morals and
                                elegance vanished as soon as the Beatles issued their first single while
                                everything was so perfect in a period of time they never knew... but I'd
                                rather not.

                                P.
                              • spacelights
                                I feel that genre labels should be used for convenient identification rather than strict definition. Each piece of music--whether recorded or live --is a
                                Message 15 of 30 , Mar 17, 2007
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                                  I feel that genre labels should be used for convenient identification
                                  rather than strict definition. Each piece of music--whether recorded
                                  or "live"--is a unique entity, so I think it's important not to
                                  over-generalize. I subscribe to Morton's view that jazz is a style.
                                  As such, it would seem to have characteristics, rather than qualities
                                  which define it absolutely. During our vintage period, there were
                                  many relatively unorthodox jazz performances (by jugbands for example,
                                  or in the case of Waller's pipe organ works).

                                  "Modern jazz" may as well begin with Art Tatum's solo piano sides of
                                  1933-34. Tatum was a devotee of Fats Waller--and yet a huge influence
                                  on Charlie Parker. I had thought that Parker's solos sounded like
                                  Tatum solos transposed; eventually I met an artist who'd been friends
                                  with Parker. He told me (unprompted) that during his early years,
                                  Parker listened to lots of Bach and Art Tatum. The point is that the
                                  chain of influences/evolution is, in a certain sense, unbroken.
                                  Ellington also had a great deal to do with the bop "revolution,"
                                  especially in his group with Jimmy Blanton and Ben Webster (the body
                                  of Gillespie's "Salt Peanuts" is virtually identical to Duke's "Cotton
                                  Tail," and both Gillespie and Parker played in Duke's band).

                                  Regarding Parker's work, my experience has been almost entirely
                                  mental, meaning that I tend to think "this man has mastered the
                                  alto saxophone" but I don't feel much. For me, the "best" jazz
                                  achieves a balance between heart and head, and the problem with much
                                  modern jazz is that it's too much "head," not enough "heart" (perhaps
                                  vice versa for certain "Free jazz"). Still, I do feel each piece
                                  should be judged (if at all) on its own merits, and not by a
                                  surrounding context, though it may otherwise enhance our appreciation.

                                  John

                                  ps The delineation of certain "eras" is relevant: I think primarily
                                  the '20s (beginning with Prohibition and Mamie Smith's breakthrough,
                                  ending with the stock market crash) or Prohibition itself (ending
                                  prior to the commercial "Swing" era). The most important point of
                                  division is indeed World War II: after the war, one sees a huge
                                  difference throughout the cultural landscape, in literature, film, and
                                  music. Perhaps a sublimated cynicism brought about by fear of atomic
                                  power, although I blame commercial television for lowering aesthetic
                                  standards in general (we won't discuss fluoridation)...
                                • Jon Noring
                                  ... Many consider late 1929 as the end of the 1920 s jazz era since it coincides with the beginning of the Great Depression. But I tend to view that as
                                  Message 16 of 30 , Mar 17, 2007
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                                    John wrote:

                                    > ps The delineation of certain "eras" is relevant: I think primarily
                                    > the '20s (beginning with Prohibition and Mamie Smith's breakthrough,
                                    > ending with the stock market crash) or Prohibition itself (ending
                                    > prior to the commercial "Swing" era). The most important point of
                                    > division is indeed World War II: after the war, one sees a huge
                                    > difference throughout the cultural landscape, in literature, film, and
                                    > music. Perhaps a sublimated cynicism brought about by fear of atomic
                                    > power, although I blame commercial television for lowering aesthetic
                                    > standards in general (we won't discuss fluoridation)...

                                    Many consider late 1929 as the end of the 1920's jazz era since it
                                    coincides with the beginning of the Great Depression.

                                    But I tend to view that as arbitrary. I think the real dividing line,
                                    which is fuzzy of course, to be the beginning of 1933. We do see some
                                    "proto-swing" in the 1930-32 era (mostly the "big band" black jazz
                                    orchestras, such as Duke Ellington). But by and large I see the
                                    1930-32 recordings to be a more sophisticated form of 1920's jazz.

                                    Certainly the move to "modern jazz" starting in the mid 40's is
                                    probably a bigger jump in jazz than from the 1920's to classic swing,
                                    but the jump from the 1920's sound to swing is also a quite major
                                    jump that to me is quite noticeable.

                                    In my opinion, of course.

                                    Jon


                                    p.s., this is why I think Red Hot Jazz should set Dec. 31, 1932 as
                                    the cutting-off point, not late 1929. Most of the 1930-32 Kardos, Joe
                                    Haymes and Casa Loma Orchestra (e.g. "Alexander's Ragtime Band") have
                                    that 1920's sound, with only a hint of the Swing era soon to come.
                                  • Rick Hensel
                                    You have but to listen to Billie Holliday sing, Strange Fruit , and Louis Armstrong sing, Black and Blue , to know that black jazz artists--despite the fair
                                    Message 17 of 30 , Mar 17, 2007
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                                      You have but to listen to Billie Holliday sing, "Strange Fruit", and Louis Armstrong sing, "Black and Blue", to know that black jazz artists--despite the "fair look" given them by supporters such as John Hammond, Benny Goodman and Dave Brubek--felt the depression and segregation and outright bigotry surrounding them. It WAS prevelent in their day-to-day life, both at the turn of the century and much later; and to say that their music "transended" the conditions they lived with is well-intended and idealistic, but not very realistic.

                                      Rick Hensel



                                      Robert Greenwood <robertgreenwood_54uk@...> wrote:
                                      -Patrice, you wrote:
                                      "... you won't force the African-American audience to support styles that were clearly
                                      related to
                                      segregation, prohibition, depression and misery, and the most incredible
                                      unequality - this is purely intellectual nostalgia which only wealthy
                                      intellectual whites can afford, just like regretting the good old times of
                                      hard work from sun to sun on the Mississippi Delta plantations which
                                      produced such fascinating blues!"

                                      I'm never sure what people mean when they link the jazz of the past with "segregation,
                                      prohibition, depression and misery, and the most incredible unequality" It's true, of
                                      course, to say that the musicians who produced the music had to live under these
                                      intolerable conditions, but surely they produced music of such genius and beauty that it
                                      represents an heroic transcendence of those conditions? Would it not rather be purely
                                      "intellectual" for someone hearing, say, the Jelly Roll Morton Red Hot Peppers recordings,
                                      or the Louis Hot Fives & Sevens, only to "hear" in them the evidence of segregation,
                                      prohibition, depression and misery? I, for one, do not believe that anyone, without some
                                      effort of will, like some whining adolescent determined to make themselves profoundly
                                      miserable, could sincerely hear all that in the music. If they do, then this is yet another
                                      example of white, middle class self-loathing and self-flagellation that surely dishonours
                                      the music and the people who produced it.
                                      Robert Greenwood






                                      ---------------------------------
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                                      in 45,000 destinations on Yahoo! Travel to find your fit.

                                      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                    • Robert Greenwood
                                      You misunderstand the point I am making, Rick. Of course I am aware that black jazz artists like other black people felt the depression and segregation and
                                      Message 18 of 30 , Mar 18, 2007
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                                        You misunderstand the point I am making, Rick. Of course I am aware that black jazz artists
                                        like other black people felt the depression and segregation and outright bigotry surrounding
                                        them; in fact, they more than "felt" it, it dictated to a large degree their very conditions of
                                        existence and permeated their day-to-day lives, but they still made music of profound
                                        beauty. Your posting cites just two recordings. Do you mean to imply that when Billie sang
                                        When You're Smiling, or when Louis played Bessie Couldn't Help It, they were in denial of the
                                        segregation and outright bigotry that surrounded them?

                                        Robert Greenwood.
                                      • tommersl
                                        ... contain the ... Hi Patrice, the question is when Jazz died. It contained a suggestion but it is open for a discussion. ... consider as ... So everything
                                        Message 19 of 30 , Mar 18, 2007
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                                          --- In RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com, "Patrice Champarou"
                                          <patrice.champarou@...> wrote:
                                          >
                                          > I am afraid I still do not understand the question (or did it
                                          contain the
                                          > reply already?)
                                          >

                                          Hi Patrice, the question is when Jazz died. It contained a suggestion
                                          but it is open for a discussion.

                                          > I suppose everyone is free to fix their own limits to what they
                                          consider as
                                          > real jazz,

                                          So everything can be real Jazz. A picture on the wall or a baby's cry.

                                          > and I guess there will be as many different replies as members on
                                          > this list. Some will even consider there is no real difference between
                                          > Lester Young and Archie Shepp, others will declare that jazz started
                                          dying
                                          > in the 30's (wasn't Morton's piece called "Dirty, Dirty, Dirty" a
                                          parody of
                                          > swing?) but I doubt this can lead us anywhere.

                                          Sure there are several views lets hear it!


                                          > This is no place for me to explain why I consider John Coltrane's
                                          Alabama as
                                          > a masterpiece or why Thelonious Monk is the one I would take to the
                                          desert
                                          > island.

                                          It doesn't need to be a Jazz in order to be a masterpiece. Speaking
                                          and evaluating from the Jazz point of view is interesting.

                                          > I reject the idea of "downgrading" just as much as the concept of
                                          > "progress" applied to music,

                                          Interesting, but the progress is what many critics over the years
                                          demanded. They didn't prove how often a music should "progress", but
                                          they wanted it to progress at their will otherwise it was out of date
                                          and something new was state of the art.

                                          > and if the original question concerned the
                                          > evolution of styles, I doubt that marketing purposes or the
                                          introduction of
                                          > long-playing recording by Blue Note played a greater part than what the
                                          > musicians wished to play and what the audience expected to hear.

                                          Blue Note that were looking for progress and bebop they got to a dead
                                          end in 1965 and sold themselves.


                                          > And as far as more and more jazz lovers turning to musicians of the
                                          past,
                                          > why complain? It is no-one's fault if there haven't been any Mortons
                                          or J.S.
                                          > Bachs for a while, it is just the way music changes - and you won't
                                          force
                                          > the African-American audience to support styles that were clearly
                                          related to
                                          > segregation, prohibition, depression and misery, and the most
                                          incredible
                                          > unequality - this is purely intellectual nostalgia which only wealthy
                                          > intellectual whites can afford, just like regretting the good old
                                          times of
                                          > hard work from sun to sun on the Mississippi Delta plantations which
                                          > produced such fascinating blues!
                                          >

                                          Here is a 1920's quote from Roger Pryor Dodge "Much as Jazz is
                                          supposed to dominate our modern music, it's really rare in it's pure
                                          state... The only feasible way to hear good jazz in quantity is
                                          through phonograph records"
                                          Now, can we say in 1926 he was talking about a purely intellectual
                                          nostalgia when he said in 1926 that the place to find real Jazz is on
                                          records? Or maybe we see a progress as he describes it in his article
                                          as Paul Whiteman syncopating the classics, in my words, a process of
                                          adding Jazz elements to Classical themes so it will "ring a bell" that
                                          it is Jazz but not contain really the Jazz art, like a Pavlov's Dog
                                          that hear the bell and think he is about to get a real meal.
                                          Tommersl
                                        • Howard Rye
                                          on 18/3/07 10:14, Robert Greenwood at robertgreenwood_54uk@yahoo.co.uk ... When the black man smiles in jazz, look for the sadness in his eyes Thus Langston
                                          Message 20 of 30 , Mar 18, 2007
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                                            on 18/3/07 10:14, Robert Greenwood at robertgreenwood_54uk@...
                                            wrote:

                                            >Your posting cites just two recordings. Do you mean to imply that when Billie
                                            >sang When You're Smiling, or when Louis played Bessie Couldn't Help It, they
                                            >were in denial of the segregation and outright bigotry that surrounded them?

                                            "When the black man smiles in jazz, look for the sadness in his eyes"

                                            Thus Langston Hughes, who knew a lot more about it than most of us. (And if
                                            anyone can provide me with an actual citation for this much quoted remark,
                                            I'd be glad if they would.)

                                            In any case this particular discussion seems to have gone off at a tangent.
                                            I took Patrice's original point to be not about the actual emotional content
                                            of the music, still less about how anyone should react to it now, but about
                                            how it was perceived by many later African-Americans, particularly in the
                                            1940s to 1970s.

                                            That this has rather dramatically changed in the last decade or so owes
                                            quite a lot to a man called Wynton Marsalis who has set about reclaiming the
                                            African-American musical past for the descendents of its creators....
                                            somewhat too ruthlessly for some tastes!

                                            Some quite serious attempts at restarting jazz history have been made. Try
                                            the albums under Wycliffe Gordon's name on Criss Cross Records, the piano
                                            solo recordings of Marcus Roberts, the several albums by Kermit Ruffins on
                                            Basin Street Records. Out of the Marsalis orbit, Howard Wiley's
                                            extraordinary album "Twenty-First Century Negro" on High Cotton is worth
                                            anyone's attention. (It would be even better if all three drummers who
                                            appear were as swinging as the best of the three.)

                                            Jazz "died" when its avant-garde decided that they didn't want to play for
                                            dancers any more. By so doing they flung away at least 80% of their ecomomic
                                            base and ensured that jazz would become a niche market. The swing-dance
                                            movement (which Wiley is a product of) has demonstrated that the process
                                            isn't necessarily irreversible. At any rate there is still (or again) some
                                            remarkably good music being produced.

                                            Frank Johnson in his book Australian Jazz Explosion rather pithily
                                            identifies two types of fool: Those who think something old is always good,
                                            and those who think something new is better. One of our problems is that
                                            since the 1940s so much of the jazz audience has consisted of one or other
                                            of these types! It has made it very difficult to sell innovative work which
                                            seeks to develop the jazz idiom rather than render it obsolete.

                                            Howard Rye, 20 Coppermill Lane, London, England, E17 7HB
                                            howard@...
                                            Tel/FAX: +44 20 8521 1098
                                          • David N. Lewis
                                            My personal feeling is that, while Jazz is not altogether dead, it is really, really struggling. And of course I m talking about Jazz as a whole, not the
                                            Message 21 of 30 , Mar 18, 2007
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                                              My personal feeling is that, while Jazz is not altogether dead, it is
                                              really, really struggling. And of course I'm talking about Jazz as a
                                              whole, not the traditional Jazz we love, as for some reason that has
                                              always adapted to fit the dimensions of the audience that was willing
                                              to support it.
                                              The current museum environment for Jazz, and its commercial, "smooth"
                                              counterpart, seems an uncomfortable fit for the music. The continued
                                              exploration of jazz in the historical context of racial injustice is
                                              likewise serving to kill it. Even from the beginning it appears that
                                              there was a lot of involvement of Italian and Jewish musicians in
                                              Jazz, who had intolerance of their own to bear, but are not getting a
                                              lot of love from jazz "scholars," due to a kind of prejudice that
                                              shuts them (the Jewish and Italian musicians) out of the history.
                                              Jazz was a great social revolution, but it is not about racial
                                              injustice; it is about freedom and different cultures from within the
                                              United States learning to get along.
                                              Albert Ayler, if anything, helped to revive ultra-traditional jazz
                                              within a new framework - his fat, wobbly tone is closer to the sound
                                              of really early jazz musicians than most others of his era. So I
                                              don't think Free Jazz killed Jazz. But we are closing in on about 30
                                              years since there were any significant stylistic developments in
                                              Jazz. Commercially, Wynton Marsalis and the smooth stuff are both in
                                              the toilet from the standpoint of the major record companies, and I'm
                                              surprised that they continue to support it. There have been no "Take
                                              Five"s or "Kind of Blue"s for a long time at this point.
                                              Also, audiences are strangely divided as to what they will go for in
                                              terms of Jazz. I was in contact recently with a New York based group
                                              that has a female singer and plays slightly out, freeform jazz within
                                              a loose framework. They were getting nowhere fast trying to pitch
                                              their album, and I suggested that they try some other labels more
                                              oriented towards avant-garde classical and improvised music. They
                                              thanked me and wrote "We try to play at jazz gigs, but that's not our
                                              audience - they hate us! We really do much better at the arty Gallery
                                              type shows and with people who like kind of off the wall classical
                                              music."
                                              So at this point, Jazz is not developing forward because cultural
                                              philistines have backed it into a corner. Will it get out? What's the
                                              use of it if the very definition of what "Jazz" is is proscribed by a
                                              few very selfish "experts" who are utilizing its legacy to pursue a
                                              social agenda?
                                              Just my thoughts,

                                              Uncle Dave Lewis
                                            • Rick Hensel
                                              My sincere apologies for coming in on the middle of something and misunderstanding. It was getting off the point of discussion, indeed; and I did not mean to
                                              Message 22 of 30 , Mar 18, 2007
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                                                My sincere apologies for coming in on the middle of something and misunderstanding. It was getting off the point of discussion, indeed; and I did not mean to be too critical of anyone, just lending a thought to the discussion as a way to "dive in" to things, being new.

                                                I wonder what year the question among march music enthusiasts ("When did March Music die?") first took place? (lol)



                                                "David N. Lewis" <udtv@...> wrote:
                                                My personal feeling is that, while Jazz is not altogether dead, it is
                                                really, really struggling. And of course I'm talking about Jazz as a
                                                whole, not the traditional Jazz we love, as for some reason that has
                                                always adapted to fit the dimensions of the audience that was willing
                                                to support it.
                                                The current museum environment for Jazz, and its commercial, "smooth"
                                                counterpart, seems an uncomfortable fit for the music. The continued
                                                exploration of jazz in the historical context of racial injustice is
                                                likewise serving to kill it. Even from the beginning it appears that
                                                there was a lot of involvement of Italian and Jewish musicians in
                                                Jazz, who had intolerance of their own to bear, but are not getting a
                                                lot of love from jazz "scholars," due to a kind of prejudice that
                                                shuts them (the Jewish and Italian musicians) out of the history.
                                                Jazz was a great social revolution, but it is not about racial
                                                injustice; it is about freedom and different cultures from within the
                                                United States learning to get along.
                                                Albert Ayler, if anything, helped to revive ultra-traditional jazz
                                                within a new framework - his fat, wobbly tone is closer to the sound
                                                of really early jazz musicians than most others of his era. So I
                                                don't think Free Jazz killed Jazz. But we are closing in on about 30
                                                years since there were any significant stylistic developments in
                                                Jazz. Commercially, Wynton Marsalis and the smooth stuff are both in
                                                the toilet from the standpoint of the major record companies, and I'm
                                                surprised that they continue to support it. There have been no "Take
                                                Five"s or "Kind of Blue"s for a long time at this point.
                                                Also, audiences are strangely divided as to what they will go for in
                                                terms of Jazz. I was in contact recently with a New York based group
                                                that has a female singer and plays slightly out, freeform jazz within
                                                a loose framework. They were getting nowhere fast trying to pitch
                                                their album, and I suggested that they try some other labels more
                                                oriented towards avant-garde classical and improvised music. They
                                                thanked me and wrote "We try to play at jazz gigs, but that's not our
                                                audience - they hate us! We really do much better at the arty Gallery
                                                type shows and with people who like kind of off the wall classical
                                                music."
                                                So at this point, Jazz is not developing forward because cultural
                                                philistines have backed it into a corner. Will it get out? What's the
                                                use of it if the very definition of what "Jazz" is is proscribed by a
                                                few very selfish "experts" who are utilizing its legacy to pursue a
                                                social agenda?
                                                Just my thoughts,

                                                Uncle Dave Lewis






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                                                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                              • Patrice Champarou
                                                ... From: Rick Hensel To: Sent: Sunday, March 18, 2007 3:38 PM Subject: Re: [RedHotJazz] Re: When did Jazz
                                                Message 23 of 30 , Mar 18, 2007
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                                                  ----- Original Message -----
                                                  From: "Rick Hensel" <nomcaller@...>
                                                  To: <RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com>
                                                  Sent: Sunday, March 18, 2007 3:38 PM
                                                  Subject: Re: [RedHotJazz] Re: When did Jazz die?


                                                  > My sincere apologies for coming in on the middle of something and
                                                  > misunderstanding. It was getting off the point of discussion, indeed; and
                                                  > I did not mean to be too critical of anyone, just lending a thought to the
                                                  > discussion as a way to "dive in" to things, being new.

                                                  No problem, I think I was responsible for the sub-topic in the first place
                                                  because some sentence by Tommer (and his subsequent explanations) seemed to
                                                  relate his views upon the "death of jazz" to the old discussion about
                                                  "Whites stealing from Blacks". I had a loooong reply to this, with more
                                                  questions about what can "pure jazz" possibly be, or didn't "hot" mean
                                                  "contemporary" some decades before it started meaning old-fashioned... but
                                                  I'll keep this for the time being, as other aspects seem much more
                                                  interesting.

                                                  Patrice

                                                  > I wonder what year the question among march music enthusiasts ("When did
                                                  > March Music die?") first took place? (lol)
                                                  >

                                                  Is the reply "every year on April 1st"? ;-)
                                                • Robert Greenwood
                                                  Howard wrote: Frank Johnson in his book Australian Jazz Explosion rather pithily identifies two types of fool: Those who think something old is always good,
                                                  Message 24 of 30 , Mar 19, 2007
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                                                    Howard wrote:
                                                    "Frank Johnson in his book Australian Jazz Explosion rather pithily
                                                    identifies two types of fool: Those who think something old is always
                                                    good,
                                                    and those who think something new is better. One of our problems is
                                                    that
                                                    since the 1940s so much of the jazz audience has consisted of one or
                                                    other
                                                    of these types! It has made it very difficult to sell innovative work
                                                    which
                                                    seeks to develop the jazz idiom rather than render it obsolete."

                                                    Too true!

                                                    "Jazz `died' when its avant-garde decided that they didn't want to
                                                    play for
                                                    dancers any more. By so doing they flung away at least 80% of their
                                                    economic
                                                    base and ensured that jazz would become a niche market."

                                                    Something similar may be said about the well-intentioned project
                                                    known as Preservation Hall. Sadly, this laudable attempt to provide
                                                    some employment for those musicians still playing the older styles of
                                                    New Orleans music meant (among many other more positive things)
                                                    removing those musicians from their accustomed audiences, for whom
                                                    they provided a music to dance and socialise to, and placing them in
                                                    front of serried rows of tourists and admirers. Kid Thomas Valentine
                                                    is said once to have remarked about the punters at Pres Hall: "They
                                                    just sit there an' stare at yer!" The inescapable paradox may well be
                                                    that the older styles died out precisely because of an attempt to
                                                    preserve them, but no doubt it's much more complicated than that.
                                                    Robert Greenwood.
                                                  • Tony Standish
                                                    Robert Greenwood s remarks about Preservation Hall are astute. However. The great bluesmen were somewhat diminished when they were discovered by either or
                                                    Message 25 of 30 , Mar 19, 2007
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                                                      Robert Greenwood's remarks about Preservation Hall are astute.
                                                      However.
                                                      The great bluesmen were somewhat diminished when they were "discovered" by
                                                      either or the college crowd in the U.S. or the Trad mob in Europe. But it
                                                      was still a mind-blowing experience to hear Muddy Waters at the Roundhouse
                                                      with Cyril Davies on harp, or Hooker in Manchester, or Rosetta Tharpe
                                                      soaring witht the Barber band, or Speckled Red playing his beautiful blues
                                                      at 100 Oxford Street, or Little Brother complaining about playing "Vicksburg
                                                      Blues" and then giving you goose bumps by playing it. Loads of other
                                                      examples are available - Memphis Slim, Champion Jack, Otis Spann, the Ward
                                                      Singers, Sonny and Brownie.
                                                      The guys just played more or less what they always played, but took the
                                                      desires of the new audiences into consideration..
                                                      Same thing in New Orleans. The Kid Thomas band played exactly the same style
                                                      at Larry Borenstein's Studio (later sadly renamed Preservation Hall) as they
                                                      did for dancing at the Moulin Rouge, over the river, for a traditional,
                                                      local, white crowd, who came to dance, to have a beer, and spend just an
                                                      ordinary night out. The style of the band did not change; the repertoire
                                                      did.
                                                      I seem to remember Gene Williams had a vivid musical moment 'way back when
                                                      he heard the Ory band playing pop tunes and waltzes in the same style that
                                                      they used for "Muskrat Ramble" and "Tiger Rag".
                                                      All of whuch leads us to when did jazz die.
                                                      Well, it died when we who chanced upon it, decided that what we liked about
                                                      it had disappeared. I've got a mate who discoverd jazz when he heard Gerry
                                                      Mulligana & Chet, others I know love "hot dance" recorded between 1920 and
                                                      1930; I even realise that there are people out there who think jazz was born
                                                      at Minton's and who don't like Louis Armstrong.
                                                      Me? Well, Howards remarks about dancing were also pretty astute. If you
                                                      don't want to dance, don't bother. There is no higher plane than leaping
                                                      around, out of control, to a good Dixie band in full flight.
                                                      That bloody Frank Johnson!
                                                      He, tooo, was a very astute man. An ordinary trumpet player who lead one of
                                                      the great Australia jazz bands, and they nearly always played for dancing!.
                                                      And he was dead right about the Fools!
                                                      Tony Standish



                                                      .----- Original Message -----
                                                      From: "Robert Greenwood" <robertgreenwood_54uk@...>
                                                      To: <RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com>
                                                      Sent: Monday, March 19, 2007 9:56 PM
                                                      Subject: [RedHotJazz] Re: When did Jazz die?


                                                      > Howard wrote:
                                                      > "Frank Johnson in his book Australian Jazz Explosion rather pithily
                                                      > identifies two types of fool: Those who think something old is always
                                                      > good,
                                                      > and those who think something new is better. One of our problems is
                                                      > that
                                                      > since the 1940s so much of the jazz audience has consisted of one or
                                                      > other
                                                      > of these types! It has made it very difficult to sell innovative work
                                                      > which
                                                      > seeks to develop the jazz idiom rather than render it obsolete."
                                                      >
                                                      > Too true!
                                                      >
                                                      > "Jazz `died' when its avant-garde decided that they didn't want to
                                                      > play for
                                                      > dancers any more. By so doing they flung away at least 80% of their
                                                      > economic
                                                      > base and ensured that jazz would become a niche market."
                                                      >
                                                      > Something similar may be said about the well-intentioned project
                                                      > known as Preservation Hall. Sadly, this laudable attempt to provide
                                                      > some employment for those musicians still playing the older styles of
                                                      > New Orleans music meant (among many other more positive things)
                                                      > removing those musicians from their accustomed audiences, for whom
                                                      > they provided a music to dance and socialise to, and placing them in
                                                      > front of serried rows of tourists and admirers. Kid Thomas Valentine
                                                      > is said once to have remarked about the punters at Pres Hall: "They
                                                      > just sit there an' stare at yer!" The inescapable paradox may well be
                                                      > that the older styles died out precisely because of an attempt to
                                                      > preserve them, but no doubt it's much more complicated than that.
                                                      > Robert Greenwood.
                                                      >
                                                      >
                                                      >
                                                      >
                                                      >
                                                      >
                                                      > Yahoo! Groups Links
                                                      >
                                                      >
                                                      >
                                                      >
                                                    • Robert Greenwood
                                                      I think rather that Preservation Hall was more a symptom than a cause of the older styles dying out. It opened once the older venues started to close down and
                                                      Message 26 of 30 , Mar 19, 2007
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                                                        I think rather that Preservation Hall was more a symptom than a cause
                                                        of the older styles dying out. It opened once the older venues
                                                        started to close down and once live music for dancing began to be
                                                        replaced by dancing and socialising to recorded music. I suspect,
                                                        however, that the people who danced to Billie & Dede at Luthjens, or
                                                        who danced to Kid Thomas's band at Speck's Moulin Rouge or the
                                                        Westwego Fireman's Hall did not start in their droves to attend
                                                        sessions at Preservation Hall. The Hall seems to have opened to
                                                        fulfil the need of visiting and expatriate European musicians to hear
                                                        New Orleans musicians playing live, and to provide an alternative for
                                                        tourists to the brasher sounds of Bourbon Street. The opening of the
                                                        Hall also brought New Orleans music to the belated attention of
                                                        record labels such as Atlantic and Riverside. Its main functions seem
                                                        to have been educational; didactic rather than functional. Deprived
                                                        of its main function (to supply music for dancing), the older style
                                                        of New Orleans music inevitably died out.
                                                        I too treasure memories of hearing some of the older musicians in
                                                        London, including Little Brother Montgomery. He played at 100 Oxford
                                                        Street and closed the evening with a version of Rock Around the Clock
                                                        (just to make the purist hackles rise). I heard Kid Thomas Valentine
                                                        one night in 1976 playing with Mike Casimir's New Iberia Stompers at
                                                        the Southampton Arms, a pub opposite Mornington Crescent underground
                                                        station. The selection of tunes was predictable (Tiger Rag & The
                                                        Saints, among others) and, while it was great to hear him, I'm sure I
                                                        was not alone in hoping he would play a waltz or a country & western
                                                        tune as he would have done at Speck's Moulin Rouge or the Westwego
                                                        Fireman's Hall…
                                                        Robert Greenwood
                                                      • PDQBlues@aol.com
                                                        Although I have little to add to this tremendously interesting discussions on such an abstract concept of when did Jazz die, I did wish to thank those who
                                                        Message 27 of 30 , Mar 19, 2007
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                                                          Although I have little to add to this tremendously interesting discussions on
                                                          such an abstract concept of "when did Jazz die," I did wish to thank those
                                                          who have added their opinions to the discussion.

                                                          I now forget who wrote something to the effect that Jazz died when some well
                                                          meaning people decided to preserve it. There may be no more accurate and
                                                          highly astute observation that I have heard in a very long time. I do agree to
                                                          a point with Robert Greenwood that "Preservation Hall was more a symptom than
                                                          a cause of the older styles dying out," and there is much to be said about
                                                          attempting to "freeze and preserve" feelings. And the thing to say is that you
                                                          cannot successfully accomplish maintaining a feeling in a healthy manner any
                                                          more than you can capture the wind. To put the music under a looking glass or
                                                          bell jar is to job it of feeling, which ultimately will kill it.

                                                          Like all art forms, Jazz requires feelings and evokes feelings. And it is
                                                          those feelings that makes the music live and alive. But like any life form,
                                                          even art must evolve, progress, change with the human elements or parish from
                                                          the face of the earth. And like languages, the words and phrasings of Jazz
                                                          will change even if the basic structure is maintain. Why is Latin a dead
                                                          language even if it's still taught in school? It's dead because it is being
                                                          artificially preserved. It can no longer change, evolve or reflect the feelings
                                                          of its people. And that is so true about any music, including Jazz. Like
                                                          the wind, that very attempt to hold onto it and somehow the preserve the exact
                                                          feelings it can evoke will lead to its death.

                                                          I am a tremendous fan of the pre-1934 Jazz music, and have been 'religiously'
                                                          listening to the recoding for over 35 years now. And I am also a big fan of
                                                          many of the newer bands that play in the styles of the older Jazz, for which
                                                          I believe I recognized several of the artists' names here on this list who
                                                          have made such recording for labels like Stomp Off. Bands, such as the
                                                          Barrelhouse Jazzband, South Frisco Jazz Band, Peruna Jazzmen, Kustbandet and many of
                                                          the Keith Nichols groups, to name but a few. The ones of these newer bands
                                                          that I enjoy best are the ones that, although they play in an older style, they
                                                          make no absolute attempt to play note by note the music that has been
                                                          preserved on the recordings. That is, they allow their own emotions to be felt
                                                          within that music, for which keeps the music alive.

                                                          Again, I thank all of you for such a wonderfully intelligent conversation
                                                          that got me to respond.

                                                          Paul



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                                                        • Robert Greenwood
                                                          Why is Latin a dead ... is being ... I know this is veering dangerously close to being off-topic, but Latin is not a dead language. Without some understanding
                                                          Message 28 of 30 , Mar 20, 2007
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                                                            Why is Latin a dead
                                                            > language even if it's still taught in school? It's dead because it
                                                            is being
                                                            > artificially preserved.

                                                            I know this is veering dangerously close to being off-topic, but Latin
                                                            is not a dead language. Without some understanding of Latin, you
                                                            (probably) have a limited understanding of your own language. Does
                                                            anyone fancy extending the metaphor to the benefits that come from a
                                                            knowledge of earlier jazz forms?

                                                            Robert Greenwood
                                                            (who, sadly, was never taught Latin at school)
                                                          • Tony Standish
                                                            Despite having the dubious distinction of once being the only one in my class to pass the Latin exam (51 out of 100!), all that remained were random bits such
                                                            Message 29 of 30 , Mar 20, 2007
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                                                              Despite having the dubious distinction of once being the only one in my
                                                              class to pass the Latin exam (51 out of 100!), all that remained were random
                                                              bits such as "Brittania insula est" and the ability to read a union banner
                                                              in Canada many years later that read "Nil illegitemae carborundum". Still, I
                                                              suppose I got something out of years of studying Latin, because despite my
                                                              success with the Dead Language, I failed most other subjects. My Big Pass in
                                                              Latin at age fourteen just coincided with my discovery of jazz. Not just the
                                                              stuff we listened to on the radio ("March of the Bobcats", "Well get it",
                                                              "Song of India", "Hey ba ba re bop", "Golden Wedding") but Bunk's "One Sweet
                                                              Letter From You" which, played on a local radio programme one Saturday
                                                              afternoon, just exploded in my brain and set me on a course that has lasted
                                                              over half a century.
                                                              Tony Standish
                                                              (Failed altar boy)
                                                              But I agree with Robert - we're getting a bit off-topic, here!
                                                              Anyone out there got any material on Guy Kelly?
                                                              ----- Original Message -----
                                                              From: "Robert Greenwood" <robertgreenwood_54uk@...>
                                                              To: <RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com>
                                                              Sent: Tuesday, March 20, 2007 9:48 PM
                                                              Subject: [RedHotJazz] Re: When did Jazz die?


                                                              > Why is Latin a dead
                                                              >> language even if it's still taught in school? It's dead because it
                                                              > is being
                                                              >> artificially preserved.
                                                              >
                                                              > I know this is veering dangerously close to being off-topic, but Latin
                                                              > is not a dead language. Without some understanding of Latin, you
                                                              > (probably) have a limited understanding of your own language. Does
                                                              > anyone fancy extending the metaphor to the benefits that come from a
                                                              > knowledge of earlier jazz forms?
                                                              >
                                                              > Robert Greenwood
                                                              > (who, sadly, was never taught Latin at school)
                                                              >
                                                              >
                                                              >
                                                              >
                                                              >
                                                              > Yahoo! Groups Links
                                                              >
                                                              >
                                                              >
                                                              >
                                                            • Robert Greenwood
                                                              As well as making sure that my daughter heard plenty of jazz in her infant years (she even heard Ken Colyer in, or, at least, from, the womb while attending,
                                                              Message 30 of 30 , Mar 20, 2007
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                                                                As well as making sure that my daughter heard plenty of jazz in her
                                                                infant years (she even heard Ken Colyer in, or, at least, from, the
                                                                womb while attending, in utero, a 100 Club gig four months before she
                                                                was born)(her mother thought she was too young to go to a jazz club
                                                                on her own, so she went with her) I made sure that she studied Latin
                                                                at her grammar school. She's a second year law student now so it has
                                                                come in useful. But on to Guy Kelly, about whose life very little is
                                                                known, only to stray off-topic again. In the late 1940s Albert
                                                                McCarthy edited two editions of the PL Yearbook of Jazz (one of them
                                                                might have been called the PL Jazzbook). PL stood for Poetry London,
                                                                a journal edited by a Sri Lankan called Tambimuttu. One contributor
                                                                was the poet Nicholas Moore who once published a book called All the
                                                                Little Jersey Cows: Poems by Guy Kelly. Several years ago I wrote to
                                                                Moore asking about this, and he replied saying that he had adopted
                                                                the name Guy Kelly for this one book since it was published by a
                                                                publisher other than PL, to whom he was then under contract. As the
                                                                only poet in the UK then interested in jazz (this was several years
                                                                before Larkin & Amis) he used Kelly's name as a clue to the real
                                                                identity of the author of the collection. The PL books contained much
                                                                worthwhile material including an early essay on the blues by Max
                                                                Jones and pieces by Frederick Ramsey and Langston Hughes. All of
                                                                which tells us nothing about Guy Kelly…
                                                                Robert Greenwood.
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