[Dixielandjazz] What Happened To Jazz?

Stephen Barbone dixielandjazz@ml.islandnet.com
Wed, 05 Jun 2002 10:50:18 -0400

What Happened to Jazz?

What's happened to jazz? Where's all the brass?
What happened to jazz? What happened to class?
There was Louis and Bix, Bechet and Bird.
Monk playing music like we'd never heard.
Count Basie and Duke and all Woody's Herds,
And how Ella could sing without any words.

Then Rock and Roll showed up one day -
Just Rhythm and Blues played a monotonous way.
Wild costumes and lasers and fireworks and all,
Smash up your axes. Then trash the hall.
"It won't last," we said, " It'll soon go away."
But it kept hanging in there, day after day.

Punk Rock, Acid Rock Heavy Metal and Rap,
They said it was music. We said it was crap.
Now it's two guys, a computer, and six amps on the stand,
With ten thousand watts and a million RAMS at hand.
Synthesizers, amplifiers, electronics and such,
They still call it music, but it don't move me much.

There's still lots of young talent. Kids really can play
North Texas lab bands turn them out every day.
But there aren't any gigs and there's no place to play -
Jam sessions where old cats show the young cats the way.
Cutting contests that last until break of day,
Where all of your peers try to blow you away.

Ah, the jazz years were sweet, and we had a good run.
We partied all night and we hid from the sun.
We drank lots of booze, smoked grass by the ton,
Played games with the chicks and quite often won.
Life was a ball---playing music was fun.
I guess we did it all. It all seems to be done.

Jazz to Hip-Hop in one hundred short years.
You can't call that progress, not if you have ears.
But it's over and done, what else can you say.
Maybe, just maybe, it'll come back some day.
What happened to music?
Pray tell, where did we goof?

What happened to jazz?
What happened to truth?

Not sure who originally wrote this. All I did was make a very few
modifications. Question: What are we going to do about it?
Steve Barbone