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Jazz Primer

What's the best way to introduce someone to Jazz?

By Published: December 9, 2004
Date: 19-Nov-1998 12:18:51
From: Kurtzie ( kurtz@liquidaudio.com )
Introduce people to live jazz...the live experience explains the idea of improvisation and let's you see the swing. It is a sure-fire way to create a jazz fan.

The one great advantage that a jazz fan has over the music of other genres is that we get to see our heroes in great clubs all over the world on a regular basis. You think the Spice Girls are going to be playing clubs in their 70s? Rock fans have to go to overcrowded sweaty clubs where they can barely see their band play or else to huge stadiums which are simply a waste of money. A cool night at Yoshi's in Oakland or the Vanguard in NYC will make a jazz fan of anybody.


Date: 23-Nov-1998 20:04:49
From: Joe ( fjoseph1@siu.edu )
I just started seriously collecting and listening to Jazz about a month ago. Because I don't know any Jazz "mentors," I've been finding my own way by using the internet and reading books. I found a good list of recordings at http://charon.nmsu.edu/~mmarley/jazz.html and have been collecting from this list. Stuff like Miles Davis' Porgy and Bess, Kind of Blue, Miles Smiles; Thelonius Monk, the two CD set from Blue Note; and Coltrane's Giant Steps. I love what I am hearing and find it more satisfying and challenging than the 'alternative rock' I've been listening to and playing for the last 20 years.

The only problem is that I feel like I am somehow setting my standards too high by only listening to the best of the best. Does anyone know what I mean? It's like if you eat lobster every day, you forget how good it really is because you haven't had a hamburger in a while. Anyway.

I'm going to continue to work off this list and then expand as my tastes and interests follow. I'd also recommend this to anyone starting to get into jazz: don't just listen to it. Learn about the history, the people, the culture, the music theory. This is what has made it really interesting to me.

If anyone has any recommendations or knows of other good resources— let me know. I'd especially be interested in recommended artists/albums that have organ music in them. Feel free to contact me directly at the e-mail address above.

Thanks


Date: 24-Nov-1998 00:11:04
From: Mike ( mdegnan@mbhs.edu )
My transition into listening to jazz was pretty seamless. Being in high school, though, it's pretty difficult to get many of my friends to listen to it. Anyway, I liked a lot of ska (I still do), and bands like Skavoovie & the Epitones (from Boston) and the Articles (from Detroit) play tunes by Ellington, Thelonious Monk, and Charlie Parker... this helped ease my way. Also, a group like Medeski Martin & Wood combines a few "alternative" techniques (they have a DJ on their latest release) and still maintains a grasp on jazz roots. A lot of my friends like groups who are HEAVILY influenced by jazz (Phish, Buckshot le Fonque, Beastie Boys, Soul Coughing) and even though these groups are seriously mainstream geared at young listeners, the mature ones will acknowledge the jazz influence and listen to you (and your jazz). Getting back to MMW issue, what is the general opinion of them now being on Blue Note?


Date: 25-Nov-1998 03:57:29
From: George Payton ( georgep1@Ameritech.net )
I recently started enjoying listening to jazz & R&B. I particularly like artists like Anita Baker, Diane Reeves and Luther Vandross. I especially like the smoothe story telling styled songs of Anita Baker and Diane Reeves. The kind you can close your eyes and listen to, after having a long stressful day at work and truly feel relaxed. I'm not much of a music historian, but I would like to expand my horizons and find different artists with simular styles. Can anyone out there advise me on some good artists.


Date: 25-Nov-1998 03:59:23
From: George ( georgep1@ameritech.net )
I recently heard an artist named Neena Freelon on BET. Anyone know which label she's on?


Date: 13-Dec-1998 14:03:37
From: Brenda Carol ( darwynrecords@yahoo.com )
What can I say? I went to the Blues Festival in Chicago. The festival was rained out! When I returned to my hotel, I heard great music seeping from the lobby bar. I saw 2 glorious nights and 4 shows of Max Roach and his quartet. Even though I am a blues singer, I had to sing jazz, instead. My first recording seems to be very popular with non jazz folk and jazz lovers everywhere! Peace.


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