Greg Thomas discusses Murray's connection with Ralph Ellison and his ideas about identity formation in American culture.
Race, Ethnicity, & Culture
Author Krin Gabbard sets aside the myth-making around bassist Charles Mingus to argue that he created a unique language of emotions—and not just in music. After exploring the most important events in Mingus’s life, Gabbard’s book takes a careful look at Mingus as a writer as well as a composer and musician. Classically trained and of mixed race, he was an outspoken innovator on his instrument as well as a bandleader, composer, producer, and record-label owner.
In this segment, Dr. Knauer responds to questions from the audience after his lecture on Europe's reception and embrace of jazz. He speaks at length about the crucial differences between the infrastructure of support for jazz in Europe and the United States, in terms of government subsidies versus untrammeled market forces, and the changing balance of these forces in Europe. Dr. Knauer also discusses the differences in European and American audiences, and in the very understanding of the word "jazz."
Dr. Wolfram Knauer, Director of Jazzinstitut Darmstadt, reflects on the fact that to play jazz, one must embody a double consciousness: paying respect to the blues and soul of African-American jazz, while finding your own blues and soul. Taking European trumpeters Harry Beckett, Tomasz Stanko and Enrico Rava as examples, Knauer explores the relationship between blues and soul, while responding to an anonymous e-mail query he once received: "Can a German understand what jazz is?" Dr.
Alto saxophonist Michael Hashim recounts his experiences touring with a group led by drummer Stefan Schatz under the auspices of the US State Department in the Palestinian enclaves. The interview touches on the reasons for the tour, the difficulities of traveling under the tight security regime, and the musical points of accord and dialogue the group was able to achieve nonetheless with Palestinian musicans playing their own native instruments.
This comprehensive study, the first to be written by an African American, is a precursor to the fields of cultural studies and critical race theory. William J. Harris discusses the implications of this sociocultural history of African American music and its unique place in American music history and culture. The talk marks the 50th anniversary of Amiri Baraka’s classic, which was published in New York City On September 25, 1963 with a first impression of 5000 copies and never went out of print.
Jazz Studies Online: You're from New York. What kept you here when you decided to pursue a career as a jazz musician? What features did the city offer then that others did not? Given that you stayed in New York (or nearby) have your motivations for being here changed?
Even the best jazz artists were not filmed under the circumstances they themselves might have chosen, since commercial entertainment was often the overriding concern of film producers. Nevertheless, jazz enthusiasts should be grateful for any film of jazz musicians, if only because so little of it exists. Much can be learned from those bits of film that preserve the images of the artists along with their music. Our pleasure in these images can be greatly enhanced when we know where they come from and why there were made.
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