All That Jazz

Photo by Lucas Allmann on

Jazz: a contrapuntal elaboration of static harmony –
i.e. barmy, to the uninitiated. It’s chromatic, diatonic, syncopated, pentatonic. It’s harsh on the ear, like a child’s first hearing
of a Shakespearean sonnet, finding the rhythm unclear,
the rhyme invisible, the whole indivisible from a clash
or a bash or a rash of noise. Not all have the chops to relish
bop or bebop, to absorb backbeats and block chords;
yet why not? It is the music of Counts, Dukes and Earls – aristocrats all.

Some ask, What is jazz for?
Counter point: what is any art for?
It is for self-expression; the death of repression; the impromptu
jam session. If you don’t swing that way, that’s cool:
not everyone’s schooled in creativity. Take your time,
whether half/dot/double or broken: jazz is never diminished
by miscomprehension. But try to open up to a little modulation –
a lot more syncopation – take a lick at sweet improvisation.
See your soul augmented as the music pours in;
you’ll find the whole tone legit. Just listen – just hear
and watch the blues quit.