© Andrea Canter
All over the world, April 30th is celebrated as International Jazz Day, a three-year old global event sponsored by UNESCO and the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz. In addition to the internationally webcast live concert from host city Osaka, Japan, there are events ranging from club gigs to workshops to panel discussion registered as Jazz Day activities from all corners of the planet.
Jazz Day, like a concentrated edition of April's Jazz Appreciation Month, is a time to reflect on the contribution of jazz to our lives and ears and minds, to our interactions with others, to the underlying concepts of freedom, collaboration, and improvisation-- however narrowly or broadly defined. Jazz can be appreciated and promoted in many ways. Today, I'll take time out to take five (with apologies to Brubeck and Desmond):
|Dave Mitchell, MN Youth Jazz Bands|
Jazz educators. Hats off to the many school band directors who squeeze jazz into their budget-slashed curricula and/or direct school jazz ensembles with limited time, limited space, limited resources and still manage to put together terrific concerts and bring students to area festivals to learn and perform. And another nod to the many jazz performers who also spend considerable time in classrooms as clinicians, passing on their knowledge and even more important, their passion. Jazz can be contagious.
|Broadcasting Planet Jazz at the Detroit Jazz Fest|
|Graydon Peterson and Dave Karr|
Jazz Day is a good time for all the consumers of jazz to think about the value of this music and how we can ensure another, and bigger Jazz Day. Every day.
|Keep jazz alive. It makes us "pleased and flipped."|