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Why Jazz isn't cool anymore??

BigMartin

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,904
I don't know (or particularly care) what the hell he's on about, other than that he seems to have some objection to the word "jazz".
 

BigMartin

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,904
Hm... always had a bit of a problem with it myself.... in that its such a broad church that the word is pretty meaningless
Well, the word music is even broader. But that doesn't make me want to go round claiming "music is dead". And there are some kinds of music that we can say are not jazz. Pick just about anything out of the pop charts. Or a Mozart symphony. I love Mozart very much, but it ain't jazz. Seems like a reasonably useful word to me.
 

Young Col

Well-Known Member
Messages
2,419
Even if it was a sensible question, it's impossible to make an objective assessment of this. The only thing that is thought provoking is how can someone write such drivel in such an offensive way?
YC
 

TomMapfumo

Well-Known Member
Messages
5,219
Why did jazz die in 1959 ?
Coz I was born in 1958 and something had to give..................;}

I think that there is a case for saying that American Jazz had run out of steam from the 60's onwards. I am loathe to attend the local Jazz Club open night as it is stacked full of Jazz disciples who do their best to play complex and dissonant nonsense and call it improvisation, as if the 60's was still here.

On the other hand North European Jazz and other more contemporary styles of "jazz" - for want of a better word - seem alive and kicking - often with Far Eastern, folk, classical and rock influences. New Orleans Jazz had its moment, and that particular stream seemed to me to run dry somewhere in the 60's. Funk, Ska, Rock, Soul, Classical and other influences seem to have taken over since then, emerging as a more diverse form of "Jazz" - like some of my favourites: Jan Garbarek, Portico Quartet, Dave Stapleton, Eric Truffaz and many others.

So an interesting, US biased idea - bit imperialistic - but a bit too narrow to carry much intellectual weight. Hence why I end up nearer to Nick Wyver's rigorous, well thought out and analytic position presented earlier.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KEXmPAnkKXw

Anyway off to play some 60's jazz on my trumpet....................:w00t:
 
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Jules

Formerly known as "nachoman"
Messages
4,622
I think that there is a case for saying that American Jazz had run out of steam from the 60's onwards. I am loathe to attend the local Jazz Club open night as it is stacked full of Jazz disciples who do their best to play complex and dissonant nonsense and call it improvisation, as if the 60's was still here.

On the other hand North European Jazz and other more contemporary styles of "jazz" - for want of a better word - seem alive and kicking - often with Far Eastern, folk, classical and rock influences. New Orleans Jazz had its moment, and that particular stream seemed to me to run dry somewhere in the 60's. Funk, Ska, Rock, Soul, Classical and other influences seem to have taken over since then, emerging as a more diverse form of "Jazz" ...
I heartily concur.....
 

Pete C

Member
Messages
344
I certainly think there is an awful lot of jazz pastiche out there so in that respect I agree with Payton, who by the way, is a fantastic player. In the UK, there is a very strong and narrow perception of what jazz is on the part of the mainstream media and 99% of Joe Public. Those of us who want to play jazz are constantly pushed towards that narrow stereotype in order to get commercial gigs, be it wine bars, restaurants, weddings etc. It's difficult to do anything original or evolutionary and to find a market for it. In that respect the label jazz could well be seen as a trap. The other thing is that of course Nicholas Payton, as a black American, is coming from a totally different perspective, and I wouldn't presume to understand the meaning of jazz in his world.
Pete
 

BigMartin

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,904
I certainly think there is an awful lot of jazz pastiche out there so in that respect I agree with Payton,
who by the way, is a fantastic player.
And the few bits of his music I've heard sound pretty much like jazz to me. Why the fuss?

In the UK, there is a very strong and narrow perception of what jazz is on the part of the mainstream media and 99% of Joe Public. Those of us who want to play jazz are constantly pushed towards that narrow stereotype in order to get commercial gigs, be it wine bars, restaurants, weddings etc. It's difficult to do anything original or evolutionary and to find a market for it. In that respect the label jazz could well be seen as a trap.
But surely that's the case in any creative or performing field. You either do what sells, what you're interested in, or somewhere in between. Or use the stuff that sells to finance the stuff you're interested in. I don't see that there's anything special about jazz or the UK there.

The other thing is that of course Nicholas Payton, as a black American, is coming from a totally different perspective, and I wouldn't presume to understand the meaning of jazz in his world.
Pete
Neither would I. But a string of deliberately provocative one-liners does very little to explain it to me. Frankly, he comes accross as a bit of a jerk.
 

Martin

Member
Messages
212
And the few bits of his music I've heard sound pretty much like jazz to me. Why the fuss?
I'm just listening to him now and I agree...sounds pretty much like jazz. I can only imagine that he objects to labelling styles of playing. As soon as a style is defined and labelled, I guess the artists freedom is reduced for fear of going outside of the defined style. That's what I understood from his rant anyway.

I thought it was funny!

Martin
 
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saxnik

Member
Messages
381
For my tuppence worth I always remind students that there are two kinds of music; good and bad.
Make sure you're playing and listening to the good sort!

I don't really differentiate between Beethoven and Brubeck, or Mahler and GaGa - it's all using Western-type twelve chromatic notes and scales we're all familiar with to make interesting harmonic noise. 'Music' - a big descriptive term like Martin said.
Some pieces I like, some I don't, but that doesn't define 'good' or 'bad' either, it's just my taste. Postmodern New Orleans or not, Payton generally plays good music and don't really mind what he chooses to call it. I agree that we as musicians get typecast and channelled into pigeonholes to suit the marketing of the record industry/media etc., and I'm not particularly happy with that but I'm also not talented enough to change it. Neither is Payton, it seems, which is a shame. Perhaps he's frustrated because of this.

'Jazz', like 'Classical', is a broad descriptive word that sounds narrow if you have little musical education and find the music you think the term suggests inaccessible for whatever reason. There is some 'jazz' that everyone will like, in the same way that most people won't go out of their way to buy 'classical' music but often quite like it when they hear it at the football, on TV, in films etc. 'Pop' however seems to me to contain most of the ingredients of 'jazz' but without the crazy spontaneity which turns off listeners who can't see the merit in it. It is indeed a fusion of all the things Tom suggested, because musicians feed off each other in terms of inspiration.

I therefore move that we abolish the record shop terms and just play 'music' in future...
;}

Nick
 

Sweet Dreamer

Senior Member
Messages
505
I read the article. I thought it was funny. It's clearly someone going overboard to object to the use of a word. But in some sense he makes some sense.


Coz I was born in 1958 and something had to give..................;}

I think that there is a case for saying that American Jazz had run out of steam from the 60's onwards. I am loathe to attend the local Jazz Club open night as it is stacked full of Jazz disciples who do their best to play complex and dissonant nonsense and call it improvisation, as if the 60's was still here.

On the other hand North European Jazz and other more contemporary styles of "jazz" - for want of a better word - seem alive and kicking - often with Far Eastern, folk, classical and rock influences. New Orleans Jazz had its moment, and that particular stream seemed to me to run dry somewhere in the 60's. Funk, Ska, Rock, Soul, Classical and other influences seem to have taken over since then, emerging as a more diverse form of "Jazz" - like some of my favourites: Jan Garbarek, Portico Quartet, Dave Stapleton, Eric Truffaz and many others.
I agree, there is a case for this. In fact, a lot of stuff I hear on the radio that is presented as "Jazz" doesn't sound anything at all like "Jazz" to me, especially in comparison with "Jazz" from the late 50's.

I just bought a new DVD by Stanton Moore, a Funk Drummer. (By the way, it's a super fantastic set of drumming examples for any drummers out there who are interested in funky grooves)

In these lessons, Stanton explains how funk evolved from Jazz. He begins with early funk drummers who got their core idea from having played Jazz. And far more interestingly Stanton actually plays examples that morph from one style into the other.

A one point he starts out with civil war march drumming on a snare, playing it straight then he morphs that into the "New Orleans Second Line" drumming with a swing field, he then moves on hand up onto the ride cymbal and morphs that into "Jazz" drumming. He continues on to morph those Jazz beats into Funk, and shows how Funk itself has evolved along from that.

So Jazz (at least as a drumming groove) is just a phase of a long process of drumming evolution. The rest of what made "Jazz" what is was in the late 50's was indeed the contribution of the artists who played chromatic instruments and offered their improve to those Jazz grooves.

What makes "Jazz" really?

The groove? The improv? The form? The artists themselves?

It's probably a combination of all these things. And the cold hard truth of the matter is that the artists die off and as generations change new artists begin to bring totally new things into the music.

So one thing that's for sure. The Jazz of the late 50's is indeed dead and gone. It was what the musical artists did at that period in time. It can be copied, emulated, and even expanded upon to a degree. But how far can it be "morphed" before it becomes "Funk", or "Bee Bop", etc.

At what point has it morphed enough to lay claim to a totally new label?

What prevents "Jazz" from becoming Funk, Bee Bop, Blues or whatever?

The lines between these genres has always been a massive blur to me.
 
Saxholder Pro
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