Jazz Music is Dead

This blog almost applies exclusively to my generation because perhaps all of you middle-agers out there still get down to John Coltrane, Thelonious Monk, Ella Fitzgerald, or any of the classic jazz cats in which we were so fortunate to have walk this earth and bless our ears with their sweet, sweet musical creations. Now, speaking to my generation (90’s-00’s kids)…come up with ONE jazz artist that has established a significant place in the music industry in the last ten years. An artist as old as perhaps Katy Perry, Ke$ha, Pearl Jam, or even the grunge princes of the 90’s, Nirvana.

The key is commercialism, and jazz artists just don’t have it! There’s no market for jazz music. Perhaps 40-60 years ago, yes indeed there was a market for jazz. That is what people danced to, not any of this auto-tuned crap. It also appealed to a plethora of minorities, African-Americans specifically, as being a gateway out of the oppressing times of the mid-1900’s, coinciding with the blues. As Miles Davis once said,“If you stop calling me a jazz man, I’ll sell more.” A recent survey from the National Endowment for the Arts has documented a steady decrease in attendance at jazz concerts in the last 26 years.

Jazz has become interpretive, like the weird kid with green hair and the long trench coat that nobody talks to and just thinks is weird except the one normal kid who knows him for who he is, and tells everyone that he is actually cool. Music is a cesspool of corporate domination and marketing techniques. Jazz doesn’t swing that way (pardon the pun). I only wish it was this easy…


Dexter Gordon

In photo: Iconic jazz saxophonist Dexter Gordon.

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1 Comment

  1. elliottghall

     /  November 29, 2012

    There are still some amazing Jazz artists out there. The problem is that they will never establish a presence in the music industry because no one listen to that stuff anymore. Lest we not forget our modern jazz artists like MMW, Trombone Shorty (more funky but I love him), Stefon Harris, etc…you are not alone. I still get down!


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