International Jazz Day

Here is where I must confess to you, dear readers (I think there might be two of you now.  Whoop!) that I am not a kool kat who trolls the night in search of genius music.  Jazz, in fact, completely eludes me.  (I have long suspected this is because I am pigmentally challenged.) 

I equate jazz with watching golf on T.V.  Those who play golf enjoy it; those who don’t are bored out of their gourds.  I don’t play the clarinet . . . or trumpet . . . or sax . . . or drums, ergo . . . 

So it is with great trepidation and unease that I announce May 29 is International (not just national, mind you) Jazz Day.

After a bit of wurfing, I discovered there is a reason I don’t ‘understand’ jazz.  It is the music world’s ocean, ebbing and flowing, ever changing.  Translation: there are no rules and therefore it has no steadfast definition. 

However, jazz does have a defined origin: the southern U.S. African American community of the early 20th century. 

For a loose definition, jazz uses ‘blue notes’, is syncopated and improvisational.  

But it can’t be pinned down beyond that.  Why?  Its genres are diverse: New Orleans Dixieland, big band swing, bebop, Latin fusion, free jazz, jazz fusion, acid jazz, and Nujazz.

But, documentarian Ken Burns provides the best introduction to jazz I have seen.  It’s 8 minutes long, but perfect for the jazz-challenged.  And after seeing it, I have a new respect for jazz musicians.  And, I wish you all a jazzy day!

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2 thoughts on “International Jazz Day

  1. To write with musical notes that which words cannot express… Sadly, I have yet to learn such a language. 😦 And two whoops for Ken Burns. The man can explain the unexplainable!

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