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ARTICLE: WHAT IS JAZZ?

Jazz and the Dream of Martin Luther King, Jr.

Read "Jazz and the Dream of Martin Luther King, Jr." reviewed by Douglas Groothuis

Without jazz, there may have been no “I Have a Dream" speech by Martin Luther King Jr. Delivered at the August 28, 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, this historic oratory is most known for improvisation--a skill without which there is no jazz--that was not found in his original written text. Moreover, the very ...

ARTICLE: WHAT IS JAZZ?

The Touch of Your Lips, Part III: The Essential Touch in Jazz Piano

Read "The Touch of Your Lips, Part III: The Essential Touch in Jazz Piano" reviewed by Kurt Ellenberger

Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 It would be nice and tidy if the development of tone color as a primary in jazz piano matched its development in the other instruments, but that is not the case. From early on in jazz's history, composers and bandleaders like Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Cab ...

ARTICLE: WHAT IS JAZZ?

The Touch of Your Lips, Part II: Touch and Tone Color in Jazz Piano

Read "The Touch of Your Lips, Part II: Touch and Tone Color in Jazz Piano" reviewed by Kurt Ellenberger

Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 As mentioned in Part I, tone color took on a prominent role in classical music in the 19C. The Romantic composers like Wagner, Strauss, Berlioz, Chopin and many others were, I think it is fair to say, somewhat obsessed with it. The composers before them were ...

ARTICLE: WHAT IS JAZZ?

The Touch of Your Lips: The Colors of Jazz Piano

Read "The Touch of Your Lips: The Colors of Jazz Piano" reviewed by Kurt Ellenberger

Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 The idea that pianists are able to create different tone colors and different timbres is generally accepted. For some performers, the sound can be a musical identifier on par with a fingerprint, which is a strong argument for their ability to coax a wide array of ...

ARTICLE: INTERVIEW

Thana Alexa, Sirintip and Owen Broder: Beaming Live Jazz From Their Living Rooms To Yours

Read "Thana Alexa, Sirintip and Owen Broder: Beaming Live Jazz From Their Living Rooms To Yours" reviewed by Michael Ricci

All About Jazz was in a unique position to help promote and broadcast the Live From Our Living Rooms Festival & Fundraiser to our readers from April 1-7, 2020 as we presented select performances over the seven days. Similar to the NEA Jazz Masters concert we broadcasted last April, I felt a personal connection to the ...

ARTICLE: WHAT IS JAZZ?

From Medieval to Live Evil: We're All Minimalists Now

Read "From Medieval to Live Evil: We're All Minimalists Now" reviewed by Kurt Ellenberger

A Brief History of the Minimalist Aesthetic Minimalism is defined by Merriam-Webster as “a style or technique (as in music, literature, or design) that is characterized by extreme spareness and simplicity."  Musically speaking, this translates to a few characteristics common to most pieces: Slow-moving or static harmony;Small number of repetitive and simple rhythmic figures;Use ...

ARTICLE: WHAT IS JAZZ?

Cold Fusion: The Search for the Jazz/Rock Unicorn, Part 3

Read "Cold Fusion: The Search for the Jazz/Rock Unicorn, Part 3" reviewed by Kurt Ellenberger

Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 Part 3: U.K.'s First Album U.K.PrologueIn the second part of this series, I laid out my criteria for what would constitute a fusion of jazz and rock that remained true to both styles, which, in my definition, means that the resultant music would have to appeal ...

ARTICLE: WHAT IS JAZZ?

2020 Winter JazzFest Marathons: A Survival Guide

Read "2020 Winter JazzFest Marathons: A Survival Guide" reviewed by Ludovico Granvassu

Believe it or not, it is that time of the year again! The holidaze are barely over and a new edition of Winter JazzFest is upon us. Knowing a jazz marathon is the perfect antidote to the holiday shopping and social marathons, producer Brice Rosenbloom and his cohorts have put together a program of gargantuan proportions. ...

ARTICLE: WHAT IS JAZZ?

Jazz and the Meaning of Life

Read "Jazz and the Meaning of Life" reviewed by Douglas Groothuis

I find jazz meaningful and delightful for a happy riot of reasons: its grand tradition and respect for standards, its uniquely American (but also global) identity, its breaking of color barriers, its persistence through changing musical fashions (jazz will never die), its courageous freedom within beautiful forms, and more. Therefore, I was fascinated to find that ...

Good Vibes, Bad Vibes: Jazz in Film

Read "Good Vibes, Bad Vibes: Jazz in Film" reviewed by Douglas Groothuis

Several films about jazz depict troubled and vice-ridden musicians, such as Charlie Parker, in Bird, and Chet Baker, in Born to be Blue. I walked out of the latter after twenty minutes of excessive obscenity, graphic vice, and general disgust. These films reinforce the idea that jazz is associated with illegal activities, illicit sex, and generally ...


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