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Jazz Humor

May 28, 2013

Hot Rod Jazz God, Part 2: An Open Letter to Rod Stewart

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By JASON WEST

Um, Mr. Stewart, if you're reading this, first I want to apologize. In the past I wrote some things that you may have found slightly offensive.Like those bits about harmless Uncle Rod who shows up on holidays with a bottle-shaped microphone and comparing your interpretation of standard jazz melodies to a bull in downtown Pamplona. Sorry, mate. I take it back. I admit I was bitter.Bitter because I'm a jazz musician. And like most jazz musicians, I struggle to make a living playing and singing all those standard jazz songs you've recorded on your Great American ...

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December 1, 2007

Motel 5: As For You

By JASON WEST

The phone in my office rang twice. I let the machine get it. The voice on the other end sounded desperate. “Hey, West, I need a band to play Bill Gates' house. Rough life, I mused, planning private parties for billionaires. Imagine all the stress involved in picking out the hippest flower arrangements, trendiest color schemes, fanciest hors d'oeurves, and ice sculptures shaped like a school of humpbacked whales in full breach. All on an unlimited budget. Something tugged me out of my reverie. It was the desperate voice of my party planner friend ...

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November 10, 2005

Sinatra Slang

By AAJ STAFF

Based on The Frank Sinatra Scrapbook by Richard Peters (1982) with additions from Sinatra fans on the internet.

18 KARAT All the way, full-out: “An 18 karat idiot." BABY Used as an exclamation as well as a term of endearment. BAG As in “my bag," a person's particular interest. BARN BURNER A very stylish, classy woman. BEARD A male friend who acts as a 'cover', usually for extramarital affairs. BEETLE A girl who dresses in flashy clothes.

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September 19, 2005

Paul Desmond-isms

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By AAJ STAFF

Alto saxophonist Paul Desmond worked with pianist Dave Brubeck for 18 years. He's best known for his composition “Take Five," which helped make Brubeck's record Time Out a mega-hit. Desmond's saxophone playing was always marked by an unusual fluidity and warmth. Through a number of solo records, he expanded on a relaxed but sophisticated sound.

Who would have guessed that Paul Desmond had a wickedly acerbic wit, ironic and self-deprecating at the same time?

“I have won several prizes as the world's slowest alto player, as well as a special award in 1961 for quietness."

“I ...

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January 29, 2005

Rod Stewart: Hot Rod, Jazz God

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By JASON WEST

That smirk. That roguish, self-satisfied, da-ya-think-I'm-sexy smirk. It's back and getting bigger everywhere you look. On Leno. On Letterman. In fashion magazines. Holiday TV specials. What's next--a Super Bowl halftime smirkfest?2000 should have been the end of The Smirk. His rock star career, which started in swingin' London during the late 1960s and peaked artistically in 1971 with Every Picture Tells A Story, skyrocketed with the disco craze. Eighties hip-pumping video hits strengthened The Smirk's sex-symbol status, before mid-90s adult contemporary ballads like “Have I Told You Lately" and “All for Love" set the standard for bridal music. ...

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January 20, 2005

BugHouse: Pages 11-13

By AAJ STAFF

Pages 1-5 | Pages 6-10 | Pages 11-13 Page 11...

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Pages 1-5 | Pages 6-10 | Pages 11-13 | Purchase BugHouse

About BugHouse Set in an “insect noir" Manhattan of the early fifties, BugHouse is the tumultuous story of Tenor saxophonist, Jimmy Watts, as he leads his talented jazz band of “bugs" from the swing era into the uncharted maelstrom of Bop. And as he and his band mates claw their way to the top of the jazz world, they must fight the temptation to ...

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January 20, 2005

BugHouse: Pages 6-10

By AAJ STAFF

Pages 1-5 | Pages 6-10 | Pages 11-13Page 6...

Page 7...

Page 8...

Page 9...

Page 10...

Pages 1-5 | Pages 6-10 | Pages 11-13 | Purchase BugHouse

About BugHouse Set in an “insect noir" Manhattan of the early fifties, BugHouse is the tumultuous story of Tenor saxophonist, Jimmy Watts, as he leads his talented jazz band of “bugs" from the swing era into the uncharted maelstrom of Bop. And as he and his band mates claw their way to the top of the jazz world, they must fight the ...

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January 20, 2005

BugHouse: Pages 1-5

By AAJ STAFF

Pages 1-5 | Pages 6-10 | Pages 11-13 Page 1...

Page 2...

Page 3...

Page 4...

Page 5...

Pages 1-5 | Pages 6-10 | Pages 11-13 | Purchase BugHouse

About BugHouse Set in an “insect noir" Manhattan of the early fifties, BugHouse is the tumultuous story of Tenor saxophonist, Jimmy Watts, as he leads his talented jazz band of “bugs" from the swing era into the uncharted maelstrom of Bop. And as he and his band mates claw their way to the top of the jazz world, they must ...

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October 29, 2004

What is Jazz?

By SHAWN MCGREW

Some say jazz keeps one foot planted in tradition while the other seeks new footwear, or maybe a warm bath and some talcum. If that's true then Charles Mingus must surely be a case in point.

Mingus, a socially conscious musician and bandleader, wasn't content to repeat Jimmy Blanton's advances or rest on his laurels after making a name for himself. As evidence, listen to Pithecanthropus Erectus in general and “A Foggy Day" in particular which hints at what Ornette Coleman would develop a few years later. But did Mingus' invention look backward to tradition? Of course it did! Perhaps ...

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October 29, 2004

President Bush Talks Jazz

By WALTER KOLOSKY

Earlier this week, representing allaboutjazz.com, I had the extreme pleasure to speak with President George Bush to determine his view on the future of jazz music in America. This interview was months in the planning. I am very grateful to the Bush campaign for allowing me this opportunity and I especially wish to express my utmost thanks to the Secret Service for releasing me in time to catch the bus home. The Secret Service does a remarkable job for this country. My interview with President Bush took place outside his campaign rally in Racine, Wisconsin. The initial plan ...

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October 24, 2004

Man Slides His Trombone And Kills Musician In Front Of Him!

By AAJ STAFF

By Randy Jeffries/Weekly World News

Bocholt, Germany -- A band musician died of a brain injury when the trombonist behind him jerked the slide of his trombone forward and struck the trumpeter in the back of the head.

Police say the tragedy occurred as the Gratzfeld College band was rehearsing the spirited American jazz classic, “When the Saints Go Marching In".

According to other band members, trombonist Peter Niemeyer, 19, “got carried away" with the music. He started gyrating and thrashing around as he played. At one point, he jerked forward and the rounded metal slide on his instrument hit ...

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October 21, 2004

Yogi Berra Explains Jazz

By AAJ STAFF

By Steve Chalke

Interviewer: What do you expect is in store for the future of jazz trumpet?Yogi: I'm thinkin' there'll be a group of guys who've never met talkin' about it all the time...Interviewer: Can you explain jazz?Yogi: I can't, but I will. 90% of all jazz is half improvisation. The other half is the part people play while others are playing something they never played with anyone who played that part. So if you play the wrong part, its right. If you play the right part, it might be right if you play ...

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July 23, 2004

Olympic Bastid Records Cuts To The Cheese

By SHAWN MCGREW

Rolph Nemo, producer and owner of upstart Olympic Bastid Records, makes no apologies for offering what other labels would turn down in a heartbeat. “Some think these recordings should be burned," says Rolph, “they weren't meant to be. The truth is, just as Armstrong, Parker and Ornette had moments of sublime insight, so did they also fall flat on their keisters. That's why we (Olympic Bastid Records) are here. The public can more easily appreciate artists' contributions after hearing just how human they really were."

Critics site Rolph with pandering to the public, for bringing a Jerry Springer-like ...

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April 1, 2004

April Fools Reviews & Articles

By AAJ STAFF

2 0 0 6 CD ReviewsBody and Soul Remixed! by Coleman HawkinsBack Of My Hand by Tempus FugitMonk Meets the Beatles by Thelonious Monk'Bone Madonna by MadonnaMe and Mr. Johnson by Jimmy SmithStreetwalkin' Blues by The Jive-Ass All-StarsBridgeleap Plays the Albert Ayler Songbook by BridgeleapMy Darker Moods by Regis PhilbinNot So Lady Sings the Blues by Lil' KimMahogany Hall Teeth by Scrote Bradshaw's Creole MarmaladeDirty, Dirty, Dirty... George Plays Jelly Roll by George WinstonSatan ...

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