[Dixielandjazz] Is "elegant" a musical term?

Joe Carbery joe.carbery at gmail.com
Tue Jul 16 16:11:02 PDT 2013

I agree, Ken. I've seen the word applied to mathematical solutions and
always felt it was apt. When applied to a jazz soloist two names that
spring instantly to mind are Lester Young and Louis.

Joe Carbery.

On Wed, Jul 17, 2013 at 10:24 AM, Ken Gates <kwg915 at gmail.com> wrote:

> At one time, I made a living writing computer programs.  A program
> was considered to be "elegant"  if, in addition to running without flaw, it
> had been constructed with a minimum of code and easily understood
> by another programmer.  A brief search of internet definitions gives
> this as used by engineers, programmers, and scientific persons
> seeking solutions of their pursuits.
> --------------------------------------------------------------
> "The word elegant, in general, is an adjective meaning of fine
> quality. Refinement and simplicity are implied, rather than fussiness,
> or ostentation. An elegant solution, often referred to in relation to
> problems in disciplines such as mathematics, engineering, and
> programming, is one in which the maximum desired effect is achieved
> with the smallest, or simplest effort. Engineers, for example, seek
> the elegant solution as a means of solving a problem with the least
> possible waste of materials and effort."
> -------------------------------------------------------------
> This word came to mind after listening to a particular good (IMO) solo
> on a  recording last night.  I don't observe that adjective being used
> very much in describing a reaction to a musical performance.  I
> think it can be a useful in the vocabulary of musical terms.
> Ken Gates
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