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Joe Lang

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About Me

I have been listening to jazz since my early teens. Initially I was into New Orleans jazz and the big swing bands. The event that got me to listen to more modern sounds was hearing Maynard Ferguson's band on a live broadcast from the Newport Jazz Festival in 1958. By the time that I got out of college in 1962, I was hooked on jazz, and the pop music of the day held no interest for me. The only performer of the so-ca;;ed Rock Era who has any real appeal for me is Van Morrison.

For eight years, from 1985-1993, I owned a used record store, and had great fun, but never recovered financially. I was like a drunk who bought a bar. There were just too many records coming through the door that found their way into my personal collection

In the mid-1990s I became involved with the New Jersey jazz society where I served for many years as the Music Chairman, and also served as President at one point. My main involvement with NJJS is writing reviews of CD, books and live performances for their magazine, “Jersey Jazz.”

I do write occasional liner notes for jazz and vocal albums.

My Jazz Story

I love jazz because it don't mean a thing if it ain't got that swing. I was first exposed to jazz when I took the Louis Armstrong album "Ambassador Satch" out of my local library I have met many musicians over the years, and have found most of them to be friendly and fun to know. The best show I ever attended was The 1979 concert celebrating Hoagy Carmichael's 80th Birthday at Carnegie Hall during the George Wien jazz festival. The first jazz record I bought was "Ambassador Satch." My advice to new listeners is to start with the most accessible music like Louis Armstrong, small group swing like Al Cohn and Zoot Sims or Oscar Peterson, and big bands like Count Basie and Woody Herman before trying to listen to the more "out" styles of jazz.

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