[Dixielandjazz] Fw: [TPIN] Re: jazz and communication
Wed, 12 Jun 2002 09:02:05 -0500
"BEBOP is intellectual music of the highest order"...?
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From: Albert L. Lilly III <firstname.lastname@example.org>
To: email@example.com <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Wednesday, June 12, 2002 10:30 AM
Subject: [TPIN] Re: jazz and communication
>I tell my kids to think of the different eras of jazz like romance
>languages (those whose main derivative is from Latin, including
>Spanish, French, Italian, etc.). While each language has its own
>words and nuances, there are many similar words and similar meanings.
>If you look at early Armstrong through swing, this pretty much holds.
>Bebop is like English in its relationship to the romance languages.
>Many words have a similar derivative and much of our language is
>derived from the Latin, yet other parts are derived from German,
>Russian, and many other languages. Because of this, a pure French
>speaker may be able to understand and be somewhat conversant in the
>other languages, but the ordering of words, the style of speech, and
>the multiple language additions to the English language makes it
>almost impossible to follow.
>Bebop to the swing era was a deeply troubling music. It was
>intellectual music of the highest order, but not simply to be
>intellectual. The vocabulary had become so complex that people had
>to be conversant in the language in order to understand the
>expression. Those without the understanding (and I include Miles in
>this group) never were comfortable in the idiom. That lead to the
>cool, and so on. Listeners who weren't knowledgeable or at least
>interested were also less impressed with bebop than swing.
>While it is clear that this isn't a "cut and dried" discussion, it is
>also clear that this happens in all forms of music and art. Warhol's
>Campbell's soup can was popular, the L-O-V-E shape was popular, but
>the Scream is less popular and harder for some to understand.
>Beethoven plays in concert halls every day in America, so is Mozart.
>Try and find daily performances of Schoenberg or Stravinsky. You
>might hear them occasionally on a college campus, but I have lived
>and played in the Indianapolis area for my entire life, and I can't
>recall the last time the Indianapolis Symphony played Schoenberg.
>They have a Beethoven series nearly every year.
>Bebop suffered a similar fate. While the devoted listeners like it
>and still do, the general public would for the most part rather hear
>Glenn Miller, Count Basie, Duke Ellington, the Dorseys, or even for
>that matter Kenny G. Is it better music? Is it an expression or a
>reaction? For truly expressive playing to occur, does the medium
>matter? Expression can happen in any form of music. The real
>question is, can we accept that as expressive?
>Albert L. Lilly III - mailto:email@example.com
>Trumpeter, Brass Clinician, Arranger and Composer
>Calendar Editor, International Trumpet Guild http://www.trumpetguild.org
>Centennial Brass home page - http://www.scican.net/~alilly/centbrs.html
>Lilly Music Services - http://www.scican.net/~alilly/engr.html
>Personal home page - http://www.scican.net/~alilly/alilly.html