[JPL] Christian Scott & playing jazz

Bobby Jackson ftapache1 at sbcglobal.net
Wed Jan 11 16:54:15 EST 2012


Hi Jae,

I think it's too closed and doesn't address all the tributaries that go into making it work in the first place.  I've had conversations with musicians, programmers, record company execs for years and seen our numbers dwindle and dwindle audience wise as well as stations who carry programming.   There is music that Chick, Herbie, Wayne, Miles play that is not welcome at particular stations who compartmentalize under the banner generally speaking "acoustic jazz."  Does that make the creative aspect of the use of electronics in music any less valid?  Does it make it a funk groove or a reggae groove or a rock groove any less spectacular?  Why do we look to 1959 as the pinnacle of this music.  That was great music of course but it seems to define what is great music in 2011 and the "core" of what is acceptable across the board in presenting jazz music as a consensus nationwide.   That doesn't happen so much outside of North America.  It's a complicated question and there is no one answer that I believe can satisfy.  I do believe that the notions of what is and isn't should open up a little more than it is.  We should be as open as the very people we applaud, musicians such as Miles and Chick and Herbie.  Christian McBride.  I don't believe we are and we're shooting ourselves in the foot.  Hosts should be able to draw the connections and align the dots to all of these different approaches and make more interesting programming.

I think I came up in what was IMO  the greatest time for radio in arguably the greatest city for music.  New York.  I remember WBLS with Frankie Crocker who made a home for acoustic, electric, R &B, Latin, etc. and made it all work.  WRVR was also programming electric right alongside acoustic; forties alongside seventies.  That doesn't happen much around the dial.  It is too predictable which is not a great thing.  

Bobby Jackson
THE JAZZ MIND
www.thejazzmind.com
ftapache1 at sbcglobal.net




On Jan 11, 2012, at 3:18 PM, Jae Sinnett wrote:

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> Paul, yes an old problem but it's never reached solutions so considering...oddly these problems remain new. In fact they've gotten worse in my view. Frustrating really. I recorded my first record over 25 years ago...with John Hicks, Frank Foster, Wallace Roney and company. I couldn't tell you how proud I was to be playing jazz. I don't feel any differently today. I play other styles of music as some here know but when I'm playing jazz there is an unrelenting feeling of exhilaration and as much as I enjoy playing different music none bring me that level of creative satisfaction.
>  
>  I've always wondered why other genres of music don't seem to have the layers of separation issues as jazz appears to. Much of this conversation has been about folks wanting to abandon the jazz mantra. Rockers don't do this in droves. EWF will tell you they're playing soul in a heart beat. They don't run from the labeling like many in jazz seem to be doing. The only reason I can think of why this happens is from a marketing standpoint. If it's rock radio...they tell you it's rock radio loudly. We should be proud to say we play jazz.  
>  
> Bobby...a bit of devil's advocate here...and just to make sure I understand your point...are you saying we should abandon the "jazz" format? Or keep it jazz and expand the boundries of what can musically fall under the jazz umbrella? If your position is the first wouldn't that be the start of wiping out the genre all together?
>  
> Jae Sinnett    
> 
> 
> ________________________________
> From: Paul Combs <pcomb at comcast.net>
> To: jazzproglist at jazzweek.com 
> Sent: Wednesday, January 11, 2012 2:44 PM
> Subject: Re: [JPL] Christian Scott & playing jazz
> 
> THIS WEEK'S SPONSOR: The JazzWeek relaunch -- JazzWeek 2.0 -- crowdfunding project has launched. Visit http://www.indiegogo.com/jazzweek for more information. Become part of the solution.
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> For what it's worth, here's my take. This is an old problem, but the word "jazz" has survived the controversy before. It has come to mean, at least to me, an approach of music making that grows out of the African-American experience, and a long collaboration with folks who are not African-American.  It is an approach that is open-ended, and yet always has something of its "dna." There is something about Christian Scott's music, or Nicholas Payton's music, or Maria Schieder's music, or the late Paul Motian's music, or Cecil Taylor's music, . . . (I hope you get my point here) that we hear as "jazz."  I propose we do is work hard to get the public-at -large to realize that when we say "jazz" we are talking about this large open-ended medium, that carries its history in one way or another.
> 
> Yes, I prefer to be identified simply as a musician, but folks don't seem to understand that. Saying that I am a jazz musician, helps them to a certain extent, although there are times when one or another are disappointed when I stray from there concept of "jazz." That being said, I remain comfortable with the word in a general, and I am proud to continue walking down the path trod by the "jazz" musicians who have come before me, where ever it may lead me, and whatever I may produce to pass on to others.
> 
> Paul Combs
> 
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