[Dixielandjazz] school music thread

tcashwigg at aol.com tcashwigg at aol.com
Fri Oct 21 22:34:21 PDT 2005

What is even more of a Crime is that they are taking these half assed 
kids and their assed teachers on those trips purporting to be promoting 
Jazz and American Culture to foreign countries.   If they are teaching 
them that that is Jazz we might as well bury it now and call me to play 
the Funeral.

I know of where I speak because one of my Trombone players is the head 
of the music department at a major High school here in the Bay area and 
goes on a trip with his high school band every summer disrupting our 
professional tour, and he won't even bring one of those kids top a 
rehearsal with us or invite them into an intern program.   Which speaks 
of the quality of musicianship that the schools are turning out.   I 
have actually just been approached by one of his former students who 
wants to try out for a position with our band.   Did he ever mention 
the kid no not once.  I am going to give the young kid a shot, maybe 
just maybe he can play and I can take him on the road and teach him 
what his teacher could not or would not or was prohibited to teach him.


I can't believe that out of all those kids coming out of schools that 
there are not some of them with real genuine talent I know because I 
was myself a product of that environment and worked my butt off to 
overcome it all NOBODY ever taught me what I know about this business 
in school.  They also did not teach me very much about music either I 
had to learn that on my own as well.

There is a lot of truth to the old adage of "Experience is the Best 
Teacher"  especially when it comes to Jazz.
But that is just my personal opinion and since it is given freely it is 
probably worthless anyway.


Tom Wiggins

-----Original Message-----
From: Cebuisle2 at aol.com
To: dixielandjazz at ml.islandnet.com
Sent: Fri, 21 Oct 2005 21:36:22 EDT
Subject: [Dixielandjazz] school music thread

   Hello list mates-

I've gone through all the posts on the subject of school music. Too 
many  for
private replies, so I'll just add my two notes worth.

The observations , all of them,  are correct.Band directors are  
hampered by discipline problems. An undisciplined student should not  
be part of

a school music organization. Or for that matter, a school sports  team. 
early jazz musicians who quit school to jazz did themselves and their  
a big favor. Today however, quitting is a lot more difficult and 
schools  have
become holding pens for teenagers.

Most newer school band directors have had little or no jazz exposure. 
many posts have pointed out, jazz can't be taught from a text. A local 

at a school where I sub a lot answered my suggestion that his "jazz 
band" play
a  little hot jazz at the next concert to increase  the small 
that usually showed up. He replied that he had already played "String 
of Pearls"

at the last concert. This fellow supposedly majored in alto sax, but I 
never seen him play the horn or even bring it to school during the last 
years. Today he bemoaned the fact that in a school of over a thousand 
  he could not find a piano player for his "jazz band." His equipment 
has been
 damaged, stolen or vandalized repeatedly over the years.

The impossible schedules some music people work under. Football games,
basketball games, annual parades, marching competitions, and on and on. 
time left for jazz if even they wanted to. Mostly this is done by one 
here in the South, no assistants.

And then,there is the poor choice (my feeling anyway) of material they 
for concerts.Far out dissonant harmonies by New Age composers. 
Audiences can't
relate to them, kids can't play them well.

I could run on, but just wanted to say that the list knows the 
What to do is a real nightmare in today's schools, and not just in the 

And then, as one member pointed out, some of these folks really don't 
to know the solutions.

And then there is there annual band trip. My grandkids go to China 
every  two
years! The whole band year is spent raising money for these extravagant 

tours so the director's resume will look good when he or she leaves. 
Not much
time for music-


   as always, tradjazz ted
oh yes-the last time they went to China they forgot to take the tuba

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