[JPL] The travesty of American Masters' Atlantic Records story.....

Arturo arturo893 at qwest.net
Thu May 3 12:33:36 EDT 2007

Last night I stayed up until 2am so that I wouldn't have to wait to see the
debut of PBS American Masters' Atlantic Records and Ahmet Ertegun's story, I
had an earlier commitment so I recorded the show and viewed it when I
arrived home. I thoroughly enjoyed the program chock full of great info,
wonderful interviews, rare 1950s footage of several of my favorite RnB
groups and more. Ahmet's stories of arriving in NYC in the 1930s as a teen
and heading to Harlem's Plantation Club and a house party was profoundly
captivating, his love of jazz was with him all his life, the film repeatedly
mentioned that Ahmet and the under rated Neshui's love of jazz, blues and
other Black American music styles was the motivation behind the founding of
Atlantic Records. Although I feel they dedicated too much time to the 1970s
and beyond corporate Atlantic Records' rock era after Warner Brothers bought
them out, I understand that has more appeal than just sticking to RnB and
soul, plus since it is more recent it'll attract younger viewers, okay fine.
Now here's where I lost it and where I say without reservations that the
filmmakers blew it by not including a segment on the jazz side of Atlantic
Records, the name Jon W. Coltrane was not uttered once despite the landmark
recordings made by Trane at Atlantic. It is a travesty to depict the history
of Atlantic Records and not make reference to, talk about, or indicate to
the viewers, especially the neophytes, that Atlantic Records was a force to
be reckoned with in the 1960s jazz world, more so when the founders of the
label were jazz lovers first and foremost. What were they thinking? If time
constraints was an issue, they could've eliminated some of the extensive
Bette Midler in the 1970s NYC bathhouses footage. There is no need for me in
this forum to elaborate on the importance of the Atlantic Records jazz
recordings of the 1960s nor mention the many legendary names that were part
of their roster. I was not hoping for and not expecting much coverage of
their jazz contributions, but complete omission?  Wow, that as bad as Burns'
total eradication of the Latinos' role in WW2.

Arturo Gómez

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