[Dixielandjazz] Report on IAJE from a young 20 something who attended
tcashwigg at aol.com
tcashwigg at aol.com
Sun Jan 14 14:14:05 PST 2007
OK folks here is a first hand report from a young person working in the
industry who attended the IAJE Conference this week in NYC.
Not one mention of Jim Cullum, or Traditional Jazz in his article
anywhere, which again tells me that the Traditional Jazz world as a
whole is simply not doing enough to Get Visibility within the
Mainstream Jazz world. Other than JIM CULLUM that we know about, how
many other Traditional Jazz players are even members of this
organization which is now pretty much running the Jazz World
politically all around the world and dictating what kind of Jazz music
gets exposure and played and who gets the nod or the gig and paid to
Two of my regular guys were there ( both Professors of Jazz ) and you
can bet they did not even mention Traditional Jazz since they are
dreaming of becoming famous in tow different arenas, neither of which
will ever happen. Being a Big Band Leader and making a living doing it
for one of them, and being a Hip Hop player and singer for the other
one :)) The only time they play Traditional Jazz is with my band and
are in awe about why they can't find good paying gigs with their ideal
dream sounds. :)) Marketing! Marketing! Marketing! and Promotion, but
those are two words never mentioned at IAJE or in the Academic or
Non-Profit performing arts world.
And I also noted from the comments from the first two speakers that he
heard, that the speakers are obviously out of touch with the audience
not to mention the industry at large. They are once again teaching the
rhetoric of the previous Decade and oblivious to the changes that have
transpired and or simply have their heads still stuck in the sand and
refuse to pull them out and look at reality.
I maintain that the same problem exists with a great majority of the
musicians and IAJE teachers in the rank and file, not to mention the
thousands of musicians that they have turned out over the past fifty
odd years. Now of course I can't be specific about any particular
Jazz Educator no do I want to but some simply do not have enough
experience in the industry outside of the Academic world in which they
live to be able to impart adequate total education benefits to the
students they are churning out. It does little good to keep cranking
out mediocre musicians with no basis for developing an income producing
marketplace to support those who might be good enough to earn a
respectable living from their efforts, practice and developed skills at
a PROFESSIONAL LEVEL.
Now Flame Away !!
Who spent four days booking gigs while these folks went off to talk
about not having any and not being able to find any other than the ones
they create with and for each other in the big academic circle that
they travel in. P.S. My two guys who are staunch members admit to
having NEVER gotten a paid gig from their affiliation other than a
token one with somebody they invited to come play as a guest in their
class. Their SPECIAL EVENT PERFORMANCES AT THEIR Colleges are also
FREE admission and they beg people ANYBODY to come. Usually there is
no one there other than the class members who are required to attend,
as the entire operation is considered by many musicians to be a waste
of time as are their continued BIG BAND rehearsals with no pay just to
keep their chops up for that BIG BAND GiG that the leader keeps telling
them actually might come someday. :)) Not in this lifetime.
Translation, don't quit that day gig yet kid.
Exerpt from the report: About IAJE Conference: 2007
We had a really interesting afternoon which started with a fun
performance from some students at Laguardia High to officially open up
the IAJE festivities. They were followed by Danilo Perez'
(multi-grammy-nominated artist) keynote speech, which was
overwhelmingly passionate, touching, and energetic, and it really set
the tone for what I think will be a cool conference. He only spoke for
about 5 minutes, and he talked about the human responsibilities that
musicians and music (and jazz musicians, in particular) have to the
condition of the world and the living condition of people that could
benefit from hearing more jazz. The last thing he said was, "What's
more important? Life or art?"
In a literal sense, Danilo was saying that in the end, what's
important is the quality of life that people around the world have (in
particular, poor people)... but in a deeper sense, there was a message
there that life conditions are improved by music, and that music is
improved by living."
"The first session Patrick and I attended was the business-section to
talk about the future of jazz. I felt pretty strongly that the speaker
from the RIAA, Barry Robinson, and also Suzan Jenkins (of IAJE but
formerly of the RIAA), were not giving the most accurate, modern
information for the roomful of artists. A lot of the discussion could
have been taking place 5-6 years ago, and Barry focused a lot on
talking about how the RIAA's anti-filesharing and lawsuits to prevent
it was beneficial to artists, but I think he wasn't quite connected to
the audience when he talked about stopping college students from
sharing music with one another, because in all honestly most of the
artists in that room would LOVE for a college full of students to be
listening to their music, even if it was for free (because that
translates into attention, attendance, and sales of other music and
One great question that one Australian-living-in-New-York artist
inspired was, "What would you rather spend your time doing: selling one
album for $105,000 or selling 105,000 albums for $1 each?" It was a
great discussion of goals, and after the session he and I talked about
(1) which would be easier, and (2) that the second option may be better
because some of those people might also buy t-shirts or tickets to a
show. Just an interesting idea as musicians take more and more
responsibility for the business of their music.
The exhibit hall was filled with a lot more college and school
music/jazz programs than I anticipated. It's really a recruiting trip
for them as there are tons of high school, college, and even middle
school students who make the trip."
Check out the new AOL. Most comprehensive set of free safety and
security tools, free access to millions of high-quality videos from
across the web, free AOL Mail and more.
More information about the Dixielandjazz