I’ve been researching contemporary jazz in the 80s and 90s and came across this great 1983 quote from Herbie Hancock:
I don’t mind being classified as a jazz artist, but I do mind being restricted to being a jazz artist. My foundation has been in jazz, though I didn’t really start out that way. I started in classical music, but my formative years were in jazz, and it makes a great foundation.
This is Wayne Shorter on jazz:
“If you’re playing something that’s supposed to sound like it’s supposed to be . . . and you’re perfecting this mandatory expression with mandates all around it, it’s nothing more than a statue,” says Shorter. “Like polishing a statue.”
It’s further pinpoints a similar point Wayne made earlier about jazz moving forward. The quote is from a Boston.com article about Wayne’s 75th Birthday Celebration. Also in the article: Wayne meets William Shatner (it’s Shatcember, you know)!
When Javon Jackson played in St. Louis earlier this year, STLToday.com posted an interview with him. It’s not online anymore but I did archive the quote I liked best. With the release of his new recording, Once Upon A Melody, earlier this month, I thought I’d post this.
“Some people don’t think what I’m doing is jazz,” Jackson says. “My answer to that is there is nothing that is whole anymore in jazz, or in any style of music. Can you point to Duke Ellington or Charlie Parker or fusion and say that is exactly what jazz is? No.
“Jazz has always incorporated elements of blues and other musical styles as it’s evolved. At the end of the day, what’s important for me is to present music that’s honest, and that helps me grow. I don’t need anyone else’s opinion to justify my music. That’s another thing I learned along the way, starting with my time with Art Blakey.”
Javon Jackson – Once Upon A Melody
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“There used to be a thing where people would say, “this is not jazz! Blah, blah, blah. It’s supposed to sound like this.” Whenever there’s a prescription for what something is supposed to be, to look like or sound like, then to me, that’s a statue.”
I love listening to Wayne speak. He always makes me think. This quote is from the latest issue of the Jazz Improv magazine.
While trying to find information about the re-release of Groove Collective’s Live…and Hard To Find, I came across this quote from their neglected web site. I love it.
When recently asked to describe the band, a member responded…
“Part social experiment, part musical experience; We’ve tried democracy, communism, capitalism, dorian, chromatic, mescalydian, starvation diets, sleep depravation, meditation, mediation, co-op, cooped up, disco-ambient-futura-trance-jungle-drum and bass-trip hop-hip-acid-transistor-funk-rock-psychedelic-silicon-hard bop-big beat-tube-electronic-live-dub-salsa-mambo combo with a twist… and you know, I think it might be the next big thing!”