RE: Smokey Robinson!!! Re: [JPL] Gladys Knight - Say What?

Jackson, Bobby Bobby.Jackson at ideastream.org
Tue Sep 12 16:37:12 EDT 2006


Mark wrote.......

"This is all very well and good that famous pop stars are doing albums 
>of standards and pretending to be jazz singers, but I think it's 
>unfortunate that these "projects" draw attention only to themselves 
>and do nothing for the real art of jazz singing.   With all the pop 
>stars doing "jazz albums" (standards albums, really), the real jazz 
>singers who've worked hard to hone their talents for years, decades in 
>some cases, get ignored."



I agree that jazz vocalists dedicated to singing jazz should get their
due and we as programmers should respect that BUT, I too feel the Gladys
Knight recording is exceptional.  As much as I love Smokey (and have all
my life), I do agree with Jae and his assessment of Smokey's recording. 

There are pop stars that immediately come to mind, that have recorded
some great jazz including Marvin Gaye (check out "the Balladeer" where
he was inspired by Frank Sinatra and Nat King Cole), Queen Latifah and
Chaka Khan.  There have been others that have failed miserably and
there's no need to mention who.  

There are too many so called jazz singers who haven't made a good record
yet but have dedicated themselves to the art form.  I have stacks of
them on my desk just waiting to be tipped into the endless abyss of file
13.  Gladys is certainly not one of them.

Bobby Jackson

-----Original Message-----
From: jazzproglist-bounces at jazzweek.com
[mailto:jazzproglist-bounces at jazzweek.com] On Behalf Of Mark Shapiro
Sent: Tuesday, September 12, 2006 4:18 PM
To: Jazz Programmers Mailing List
Subject: Re: Smokey Robinson!!! Re: [JPL] Gladys Knight - Say What?

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Jim, 

I take albums one by one, whether by a mega-famous star or by an
unknown. I agree that it is unfortunate that great music goes
unrecognized, but I don't agree that a pop star has not contributed to
the art with a particular album only for the fact that he or she hasn't
contributed to the art of jazz previously while other artists languish
in undeserved obscurity. In this conversation I've been extolling a
particular album, definitely not because the artist is famous, but
rather because I love the music, no matter the artist is famous or not.

Mark Shapiro

>Mark, Jae, and anyone else who may be still reading this thread....
>
>This is all very well and good that famous pop stars are doing albums 
>of standards and pretending to be jazz singers, but I think it's 
>unfortunate that these "projects"  draw attention only to themselves 
>and do nothing for the real art of jazz singing.   With all the  pop 
>stars doing "jazz albums"  (standards albums, really), the real jazz 
>singers who've worked hard to hone their talents for years, decades in 
>some cases, get ignored.


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