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A Pox on Your Pixels - LaPalm who?

I normally don't do this sort of thing, but I feel compelled to point out that a comment placed by me this morning on Marc Myers' JazzWax blog has been deleted by him for reasons that I find disturbing. I'll let you be the judge and I hope to see your comments here. Stomp Off is a blog where only blatant spam or something outright odious is removed (so far it has only been spam)—so, to stifle a comment because the truth might not sit well with some people is, imho, wrong. Anyone who has given my blog more than a cursory look knows that I don't mince my words—one reaps what one sows and should not be shocked when the occasional weed is pulled and waved in the air. Many negative things have been said of me over the years and I only react if they are untrue and need to be corrected. Tell a truth about me and I let it be.

The blog post in question is devoted to Dick LaPalm, whom I had truly never before heard of. Click on his name and check it out, then read my banished comment:

While this guy is right about the importance/influence of many who are on his lists, he obviously is not as "hip" as he would want us to believe. Sid Mark (WHAT), for example, had very limited knowledge of jazz beyond what he read in liner notes, and he was virtually ignorant of its history.

When I asked him why he never played Fats Navarro's records, he said that we weren't "getting his new stuff." Fats had been dead for some time. Sid's thing was and remains Frank Sinatra.

BTW, Joel Dorn replaced me when I moved to New York. WHAT-FM played jazz 24/7 and may have been the country's first all-jazz station, but I don't recall ever hearing Dick LaPalm's name while working there, nor—for that matter—at WCAU. We had a group of promoters/distributors who regularly dropped by, but not this guy.

Sounds like there's some self-puffery going on here.

Make that supported self-puffery. Well, at least Marc had the decency to e-mail me an explanation (see below). I appreciate that, but it does not change the way I feel about his decision. Sometimes the truth is a bit uncomfortable—we all know that—but I find this kind of mother-knows-best attitude to be far more discomfiting. I wonder if that explains why Stomp Off has never been on Marc's blog list. JazzWax has been linked to here ever since I first discovered what I still think is a well crafted, informative jazz site. If only it were more aboveboard.

Read Marc's e-mail to me and let's hear what you think.  

Hi Chris,

I pulled your comment and wanted to let you know why as a courtesy. As
you know, I generally allow pretty much anything and everything but draw
the line when I feel that comments are a tad harsh.

Dick LaPalm's credentials are well known in the industry.
He may not be your cup of tea, or you may find that his list isn't as
authoritative or as complete as you wish. But I kind of like to keep
comments on a friendly level, so readers feel comfortable participating
and feeling that it's a safe town center. I know this is a little different from the free-for-all at many sites, but it's just a thing for me.



Not so cool.


  1. God, I never read that thing. A visit from you to any site is an occasion even if you're 'cussin'.

    I never heard of this renowned fellow and looked him up thinking it was another rab hines persona or an adult entertainment stage name but yes, he did do something once. It seemed to be involved with a corner of jazz that made a lot of money.

  2. Ignore this Marc Myers. I also am banned from his blog.

    He has bad judgement in my opinion.

    Keep up the good work nevertheless!


  3. Thanks for commenting, Chris.

    I used to avoid that corner. People who worked from it were rarely as serious about the music as they were about cashing in on it. These were the guys who implemented the payola system. I was at WHAT when that happened and saw some of my colleagues get related press coverage that they would rather not have had. I never allowed any promo person to make music choices for me, which may be why I never heard of him. As for "Often musicians consulted with him to determine what types of songs and albums would have the best shot of clicking with listeners." I can't imagine a jazz player seeking such consultation—I say that's pure hogwash. Well, the guys is, after all, someone who has spent a lifetime hawking.

    I respect Marc's right to dump any comment that does not sit well with him, and I am sorry that I couldn't be more cooperative.

    Apropos corners, yours is truly brilliant and you will find me there with unfailing regularity.


  4. Zappa called them the Cigar Chompers. It's funny, under the Baby Boomer regimen payola morphed into 'blowola' in that hi flying rock stations in major markets were bribed with cocaine and bimbos as it was harder to trace than cash. If you're gonna be illegal, may as well go all the way.

  5. Watch it! Now you're triggering memories of my days at Blackrock and the Columbia conventions.


  6. Without taking sides in this teacup thing, I'd only mention that censoring (that is, softening) one's own remarks can be wise on occasion. I think we all fire off emails we sometimes would recall if possible. Just yesterday I sent Marc two probably useless comments--not wanting to pay homage to Jazz Motherhood--which might more prudently have been withheld. As it was, I avoided mentioning Miles' infamous favorite, mothereffing word...
    Word up.

  7. Mr. Albertson, if I'm not still banned here, please let me agree that your comment did not merit excision from JazzWax--just as my comments did not merit excision from your own site after I responded online to your February 25, 2010 ad hominem attack. Alan Kurtz, you wrote, "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."

    Now, two months later, you express indignation at being censored by Mr. Myers, and falsely claim that "Stomp Off is a blog where only blatant spam or something outright odious is removed (so far it has only been spam)." Since my comments in February were obviously not spam, they must by definition have been "outright odious," yet you deny ever having deleted something for that reason. The fact is, however, that your hurtful remarks remain archived on "Stomp Off" for all the world to see, whereas you summarily consigned my politely worded replies to oblivion.

    Your self-righteousness, sir, would be less hypocritical if you practiced the tolerance you demand from Marc Myers. You deride Marc's "mother-knows-best attitude," yet that is precisely your own stance towards me and who knows how many other would-be commenters whom you've insulted only to deny us the opportunity to defend ourselves.

  8. Mr. Kurtz, neither you nor anyone else has ever been banned from this blog, nor have any of your comments been deleted. Ergo, I have no idea what you are talking about and can only surmise that you have found and are seizing another opportunity to vent an anger that only you might understand. Chronic negativity is a bore as well as a burden—I hope you find the cure.

    In the meantime, go ahead and be my guest, but please try to get your facts straight. I understand that some comment of yours was deleted, but it just did not happen on my blog.

  9. Mr. Albertson, please let me refresh your memory. In your blog of February 25, 2010 (stored inexplicably in the Stomp Off folder as 2008_01_01_archive.html), you attacked me ad hominem, as readers may verify by clicking on my name in blue above to call up that page. Readers will note, however, that all comments have been deleted, including a piling-on assault by Michael Steinman (February 25, 2010 11:43 PM) and my rebuttals thereto, in which I politely thanked you for the privilege of participating in this thread but objected to the way you and Mr. Steinman had singled me out for vilification.

    I suggested that you may not have seen a representative sampling of my many online comments to form your sweeping judgment that a single short comment deleted two days earlier from Brilliant Corners was what you called a "typical hateful utterance from someone named Alan Kurtz." I also proposed that you are not familiar enough with my body of work as a writer and editor to (a) fairly label it "crap" or (b) dismiss me as an ignoramus, both of which you did in that blog.

    Perhaps you truly do not remember this exchange, and honestly don't recall deleting my comments. Maybe it's a symptom of age. Yet the fact remains that you are criticizing Marc Myers for doing exactly what you have done at Stomp Off: expunge the commentary of those who disagree with you. Of course, as site proprietor, that is your right. But your holier-than-thou pose is a sham.

  10. Playing the old age card will not serve your purpose. I remember very well that I have never deleted an original comment from this blog. I have nipped in the bud the inevitable attempts at trolling the guest books seem to attract, but that is the extent of it. I believe that you may be confused (irrational anger will do that) by the fact that I omitted your comment when I brought up the Brilliant Corners post. This was not a comment you had posted here, but rather one that you had made on Chris Rich's blog.

    As for the "inexplicable" storing under a 2008 date, let me explain. The way Blogger is set up, the only way one can put old posts aside without deleting them is to give them the earliest date. That puts them at the bottom (or top, if you will) of the chronology, yet retains access.

    Now, you are free to continue your frivolous little rants and whines, but I hope you will pardon me if I bow out of this fruitless exchange and turn to more interesting matters.

  11. Mr. Albertson, please accept my apology. If you sincerely cannot remember a discussion that took place on your blog only two months ago, then you cannot be held responsible. Readers should bear this in mind when visiting Stomp Off, and cut you some slack.