[Dixielandjazz] Re: Darktown Strutters Ball

Charles Suhor csuhor at zebra.net
Mon Mar 14 10:24:02 PST 2005

On Mar 14, 2005, at 2:42 AM, Bill Haesler wrote:

>> We can't take into account every possible offense that might be taken
> to every song, but it doesn't cost a penny NOT to play a song like
> "Darktown" that's known to be offensive to some Black audiences.
> Charlie Suhor<
> Dear Charlie,
> I seem to have missed your point.
> (Not hard for me!)
> We are probably separated by our common language (as 'they' say), but 
> please
> elaborate.
> Kind regards,
> Bill.

Bill and All--

Sorry, my double negative probably tripped over itself. James Thurber 
once satirized such language by coining the phrase, "not 
unmeaningless." A triple negative, no less.

My point was, it's good to take a song out of the repertoire if you 
know it's offensive to part of your audience. Good courtesy, good p.r., 
and good-hearted. This doesn't mean that every song must be scrutinized 
severely and cleared by the Political Correctness police, but common 
sense and simple sensitivity tell me that "Darktown" isn't a good 
choice except maybe in a historical context where vintage tunes or 
arrangements are being featured. This isn't just a theory. Black 
colleagues have stated this, and I respect them.

Hope that clarifies the point, though it might not make it more 

Charlie Suhor

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