[Dixielandjazz] Re: Dixielandjazz Digest, Vol 24, Issue 42

Steve barbone barbonestreet at earthlink.net
Sun Dec 19 13:54:52 PST 2004

on 12/19/04 3:00 PM, dixielandjazz-request at ml.islandnet.com at
dixielandjazz-request at ml.islandnet.com wrote:

Charles Suhor <csuhor at zebra.net> wrote (polite snip)

> The audience etiquette piece below came from a jazz fan....

> By the 1950s modern jazz had generated a culture
> of deep listening, with feedback limited to certain kinds of
> behavior—e.g., applause after solos.....

> But traditional jazz and Dixieland bands have historically been part of
> social settings like dances, bars, picnics, and street events where
> items like 1, 3, and 4 didn’t apply. At most dances I’ve played over
> the years with jazz-based combos, audience chatter was a given. A quiet
> room meant that nobody was there, or they weren’t digging the band. The
> party mood enhanced the evening for everyone, especially the musicians.
> Yet many OKOM concerts today are treated as solemnly as classical or
> modern jazz events.

IMO, the solemn treatment for Dixieland is what just about killed it.
Basically because (IMO again) for the most part, the artsy silent audience
has absolutely no idea of what they are listening to.

This is a simple form of jazz. Meant to, IMO, be played in Speakeasies,
Bars, Whorehouses, at Parties and Picnics etc. And to be enjoyed by regular
folks who are also having a raucous good time.

In effect, the musicians are not, like the avant garde ones, "making a
statement," if you know what I mean.

To me, that means noise and audience participation are part of the deal.

Yep a bar gig, a college fraternity party gig, a restaurant gig where we are
up close and personal to the audience is our preferred venue. It seems as if
the further away from the audience we are, the less fun we have. And when
it's dead quiet, we think the audience is dead too.

Steve Barbone

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