[Dixielandjazz] Re: San Diego Mardi Gras vs. OKOM

Stephen Barbone barbonestreet at earthlink.net
Sat Dec 20 08:45:41 PST 2003

> JBruno868 at aol.com wrote (polite snip)
> The  main problem as I see it is the people that they want to attend. The
> young, party people and even if we traditionally play OKOM for Mardi Gras the
> music won't attract the party people down there that they want. Such a shame.

Therein is precisely the problem with today's OKOM bands and today's OKOM fans. Both are old, worn out and have short

OKOM started out as PARTY MUSIC. In the beginning OKOM equaled PARTY.

What changed it?

Old folks with an elitist attitude that THEY had something special. An "art" form with no balls. Intellectual music.
And then bands made up of these same old folks who thought they could continue on forever fooling the audience.


New Orleans 1900-1920 JAZZ = PARTY

Louis Armstrong/King Oliver Jazz = Party

Eddie Condon's Groups Jazz = Party

Lu Watters - Turk Murphy - Bob Scobey Jazz = Party.

Then somewhere After the last revival, a bunch of old folks and lesser musicians changed that equation to: Jazz =
Mundane music. And so Jazz, for them, no longer equaled party.

Yes, that is the problem in a nutshell.

There are, thank goodness, some exceptions, like Ascona and Barbone Street.

Want to see/hear jazz = party again? Come East and hear Barbone Street. Watch the very audience that attends the San
Diego Mardi Gras cheer us on. And, oh yes, hear some great Dixieland, from a group of musicians who were around to
listen to the Condon Groups PLAY this music most of us have de-balled.

Failing that, go to Ascona in 2004 and see the best OKOM musicians in the world, for a change, and while there, attend
a really great party. OKOM and Lago Maggiore, what could be more wonderful?

Steve Barbone

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