Wednesday, April 30, 2008

two great losses for jazz

IAJE, the International Association of Jazz Educators, is shutting down. This organization has been a great cheerleader for jazz education, and their annual conventions, to judge by the example of the 1991 DC fest I attended, were heady sessions of love of music and remarkable opportunities to meet with musicians...I met Joe Morello and Max Roach, as well as members of the Mingus Dynasty, on that occasion. Spontaneous jam sessions in the hallways, or wherever a piano might be sitting, never idle for long.
Here's the JazzTimes account.

And last week we lost Jimmy Giuffre...he'd been ailing for a while, but he'd been an innovator, an educator, and a maximum talent. Among his most famous performances were those included in the theatrical documentary Jazz on a Summer's Day...

Here's another reading of that, by the Trio:

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

improbable "service"-esque post

Or, how this blog will never be mistaken for Esquire's (I enjoyed the self-critical piece they ran in the magazine some months back, in which the temporary ombudsman of sorts asked just how many times the magazine felt it could re-run a piece about how to tie a necktie).

But as one who sometimes sports a Jah Wobble/Don Johnson stubble, mostly because like the ex-Public Image Ltd. member I dislike both shaving and beards, I have recently discovered that if one needs to shave a few days' growth, that standard "facial" disposible razors of the sort common today work less well for the gross mowing than do the similar women's leg razors do...with the latter's shallower angles, less perpendicularity (now that word should get this low-intesity blog some engine hits).

(OK...who remembers Jah Wobble?)

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Best Radio Now

So, the best things I get to hear on radio regularly these days include Harry Shearer's LE SHOW (a melange of Shearer's many-voices sketches, commentary on political and social events, readings from trade publications and the foreign press, and musical selections, a few of the last either his own parodic compositions or his wife's performances of pop jazz...she's quite a good singer), the newly Peabody Award-winning WAIT, WAIT, DON'T TELL ME (a comedic news quiz featuring a repertory company of panelists...Roy Blount and Paula Poundstone often among the best), WHAD'YA KNOW? (another comedy quiz show, with a lot of audience participation and a fine jazz combo), and THE SOUND OF YOUNG AMERICA (less gratingly precious and certainly more prone to genuine wit than most public radio programs moving in that direction). These are audible online as well as on air in the Philadelphia area...among those resources only available on the web for a Philadelphian include the Pacifica Radio show COVER TO COVER: BOOKWAVES conducted by Richard Wolinsky occasionally in tandem with that gentleman of letters Richard Lupoff, and the raw interviews that were boiled down for Don Swaim's CBS Radio BOOK BEAT in the 1980s and early 1990s...a remarkable array of writers of most sorts active in those years.

Please feel free to let me know of particularly the odd or rare items I might've been overlooking.