February 25, 2010
This is more a commentary than a recommendation. I am not quite sure what precipitated it—except that it has something to do with a recent discussion on jazz education—but one of my favorite fellow bloggers, Chris Rich, has suddenly decided to call it quits. The site, aptly named Brilliant Corners, is still running, kept alive by his friend and fellow poster, Matt Lavelle, who only gives a hint of what occurred.
Chris Rich is not someone I have ever met or spoken to, nor has it been long since I first stumbled upon his blog, but I have found his writing interesting in style as well as content. So, apparently have many other cyber nomads, for there is a mounting number of comments at Brilliant Corners.
I addd my own comment and, in so doing, checked the box that routes subsequent input to my mailbox, which is why I found one comment today that you will not see at Brilliant Corners. Mr. Lavelle obviously removed it. I have mixed feelings about the removal, although I have done the same when spammed or trolled, but I can understand Mr. Lavelle's decision. The comment in question is a typical hateful utterance from someone named Alan Kurtz, who may or may not still be writing for another jazz blog, Jazz.com. I will not quote from it, for there is nothing there of substance, but this sort of thing seems to be what Mr. Kurtz does. He comes off like a malcontent prig who delights in posting comments that say more about him than they do about the targets of his venom. I find it odd that he chooses to write about jazz, a subject that he clearly knows little about, stranger still is the fact that blog authorities have published his...well, someone called it "crap," and I'll go with that.
I join all who hope that Chris Rich has a change of mind.
January 24, 2010
Right now I highly recommend that you read a post on Chris Rich's blog, Brilliant Corners. This blog is consistently an interesting place to stop in for intellectual refreshment, but I find Chris's observations on "the Kelley Effect" to be particularly insightful. Please note that the Chris Rich piece to which I provided a link has been removed, apparently by the author. I wish I had preserved it.
In the pre-Marsalis/J@LC era, before corporate interests took some of the bombast out of live jazz enjoyment, we had in New York a wonderful community of great artists who represented both the past and the present. You didn't have to spend a fortune at Club Coca Cola or other cold tourist-oriented venues, you could hear the very best for a very reasonable price. Today, do you think you could catch a live show with even a fraction of the talent listed in the 1965 ad below? I don't think so. For that matter, could you even find so much genuine talent in one place today? Granted, we all made less money back then and the cost of living was considerably lower, but with the equivalent of four 2010 dollars in your pocket, don't waste time trying.
All this to lead into my next recommended link. It will take you to Marc Myers' excellent blog, JazzWax, where you will find a two-part 2008 interview with the late Art d'Lugoff, whose Village Gate was an eclectic, extraordinary breeding ground for talent. Here's the link, GO THERE!