[JPL] Jerry Wexler/R&B/Jazz

louisx at verizon.net louisx at verizon.net
Fri Aug 15 17:46:05 EDT 2008

I don't think it's that simple. I think the influence goes both ways -- jazz 
influenced R&B as much as R&B influenced jazz. "Dumbing down" is an 
ambiguous term and very subjective. One can say that when jazz gets to be in 
a place where it's called "dumb", then it isn't jazz any more and therefore 
cannot be "dumbed down" jazz. But someone may package it as jazz and there, 
my friend, is the problem. Personally, I don't even know what jazz is any 
more. Categories never made much sense to me. Music is moving air. It can't 
be boxed.

 ----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Jae Sinnett" <jaejazz at yahoo.com>
To: <jazzproglist at jazzweek.com>
Sent: Friday, August 15, 2008 4:36 PM
Subject: [JPL] Jerry Wexler/R&B/Jazz

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> Without question Jerry Wexler was at the helm of bringing great black 
> American R&B and soul music to the world. I can't possibly imagine what 
> soul or R&B music history would sound like if he never existed. I do have 
> a question though...and this is simply an observation that seeks 
> opinion...
> While "soul" music was dominated by vocals and heavily influenced by 
> gospel music... R&B at it's inception... was just as much 
> instrumental...if not more so... as it was vocal...and evolved out of 
> blues AND jazz. Considering, could it be that this R&B movement was an 
> unintentional start to the simplification and dumbing down of jazz? I've 
> never heard anyone really talk about this but I think it to be true. While 
> one form blossomed the other that initiated it suffered...all for the 
> purposes of sales.
> Jae Sinnett
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