[Dixielandjazz] Hip Hop Generation killing Jazz?

Steve barbone barbonestreet at earthlink.net
Tue Sep 27 20:05:12 PDT 2005

Below article sent by a New Zealand mate, Colin Toomer who spotted it on
EjazzNews which may be visited at http://www.ejazznews.com.

Interesting article which IMO is totally wrong about what "we" should do to
solve the problem of the premise; "MTV/Hip Hop Generation may kill jazz".

IMO, what "we in the artistic community" should do is INCREDIBLY SIMPLE.

Hip Hoppers killing jazz? Nah, "we" are doing our best to kill jazz by doing
nothing about bringing it to the kids. Shame on us.


Noted Jazz Musician Says MTV/Hip Hop Generation May Kill Classical and Jazz
Music - Tuesday, September 27, 2005 - 04:06 PM

WASHINGTON, Sept. 26 /PRNewswire/ -- The MTV/Hip Hop Generation, which is
indoctrinated in electronic and non-melodious music, has placed classical
music and jazz in "grave" danger according to trombonist Gregory Charles
Royal, an alumnus of the Grammy Award winning Duke Ellington Orchestra.
Royal, artistic director of the American Youth Symphony (AYS) in
Washington, DC says that the growth in Hip Hop and MTV has resulted in a 30-
and- under generation with no appreciation of traditional music. In fact,
Royal has written a play about the subject, which was a New York JVC Jazz
Festival Special Event. The play is available free on DVD at

"If you consider that the vast amount of college graduates over the past
few years don't even register in their consciousness the sound of a cello,
clarinet, French horn or flute, how can you even begin to expect them to
appreciate traditional forms of music, not to mention going out and actually
purchasing a ticket?" says Royal, who has lectured on American music at
colleges and universities.

Royal says that the lack of general music education in the schools and the
misuse of technology that allows young artists to bypass musical skill have
provided what he calls the "nail in the coffin."

"The fact that the under-30 generation can call Rap records "songs," even
though the vast majority of them have no melody, is a barometer of how far
musical standards have fallen," says Royal, who holds a Master of Music in
Jazz Studies from Howard University.

"We in the artistic community must make up lost ground for our abandonment
and lack of guidance of this generation. We must partner with Hip Hop
artists and labels to lobby them to utilize acoustic instruments. We must
also persuade organizations interested in the preservation of traditional
music, like the Knight Foundation, to offer grants to Hip Hop producers that
choose to use real instruments in their music. We have to get acoustic
sounds back in the marketplace," says Susan Veres, Executive Director of

For more information see http://www.hardboplife.com.

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