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

AAJ Staff By

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I was first introduced to jazz as a child...every morning on the way to school my parents listened to the local jazz station. I found the music so soothing and it touched me in a way I could not put into words,at that time I did not know I was listening to jazz. When I got older I was into rap,regae and R& B, however everytime I flipped by the jazz station I was always drawn to the music. Then one day I swithed to the jazz station permanently and soon after I purchased my first(of many!) Jazz cd it was Boney James -Sweet Thing


Date: 29-Jun-1999 17:00:05
From: Cynthia
SUSIE Q—Let me know if you break up with the guy!


Date: 30-Jun-1999 06:38:01
From: Mandy ( [email protected] )
I have been reading all the above comments with great interest. I have just stepped through the door marked 'Jazz' (weel I kinda fell through it if the truth were told) at a ripe old age of thirty three. I sang choral music through my school years, but currently sing pop covers in a band and perform in amateur shows. It was by chance that I was invited to audition for a show called "The Hot Mikado." This is a Jazz/Swing/Soul version of the Gilbert & Sullivan Opera, and I would describe it as having a Jazz feel rather than being a Jazz show. Anyway, this lead me to ask the MD about Jazz and I was given two CD's to listen to, one by Dianne Reeves, and the other by Claire Martin. I had to listen to them a few times to really appreciate them, but that really started the ball rolling. As a newcomer to the Jazz scene, I can say that trying to get people into Jazz,perhaps, should not be seen as trying to 'educate' them, and instead just try to find a form of Jazz that they can enjoy. If they want to learn the in's and out's of the genre, then they will soon ask!!


Date: 14-Jul-1999 02:05:20
From: Leo ( [email protected] )
I'm a jazz bassist, and as a musician I think the one thing I that hurts the perception of this wonderful music to the unitiated are musicians who try to impress everyone with their avante-garde wanne-be ideas, at the expense of making music that MOVES your soul and has something emotional to say. Admittedly, I come from a Nat Cole bias, so I guess that means I like 'pretty' music to some hardcore jazzers, but what is jazz but life and love? My college art professor once told a design class I was in that "intelligence always understands intelligence," so if you're wondering why people just don't get your 'cool' music, maybe the problem isn't with them. If music is truly relevant, it will be relevant to most, if not all people. So to me, I would say take someone to see an artist that YOU think has real feeling and expression, and not just monster chops. Same goes for recordings.

A very personal selection of favorite musicians/songs that I would recommend: Johhny Hartman w/John Coltrane "They say it's Wonderful" Duke Ellington "Prelude to a Kiss" Charlie Haden and Quartet West "Haunted Heart" Billie Holiday "Stars Fell on Alabama" Antonio Jobim w/Ellis Regina "Agua de Marco" Bene Moré "Como Fue"

Lastly, if you haven't seen the movie or heard the CD "Buena Vista Social Club," I highly recommend it. It's a wonderful reminder of what good music and good musicians are all about, regardless of style.




Date: 17-Jul-1999 00:40:22
From: Paul
My mom was a jazz singer and every night at supper we had a choice of a second helping of vegetables or listen to a cut from the Smithsonian Collection of Classic Jazz. It was a no brainer. Now all my brothers and sisters are big jazz fans.

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