Jazz Is Dead (Again)

As the title of this piece indicates, we’ve been down this road many a time.

What makes for the communal pool of knowledge and musical material into which jazz musicians leap—and will leap in the future? Or is that pool just dry? I’ve not yet fully worked out my feelings about Schwarz’s piece. I want to know how you feel about it.

1. I don’t think the pool is dry – the tradition has the seeds of its own development through gospel, blues, funk and even classical and R&R.

2. Is it commercially viable? – well more so than ever in the sense that with technological conduits by-passing major labels, Jazz should no longer be something deemed as esoteric and artists can connect directly with fans.

3. Stop fretting about it – to preserve it by design or make it “relevant” are both rationalistic and counter-productive, undermining its natural adaptive dynamism.

This photo of Louis Armstrong is part of a new exhibit “In Vibrant Color: Vintage Celebrity Portraits from the Harry Warnecke Studio.”