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True. And of course the kids these days have adjusted to a new reality. The live music scene many of us grew up in no longer exists as it once did. It has been seriously diminished. But it's not entirely gone; live music is still out there (as Dave says), you just have to search it out.
It's been covered in other posts, but I'm just sayin' again - with an unexpected level of grammatical and spelling...ical clarity - because bourbon that a LOT depends on where you are. Some cities are simply going to have a stronger scene than others.

St. Louis still has very strong high school and college-level jazz programs, and several quite prominent community bands (Route 66, Genesis, even bands out in St. Charles which I still consider St. Louis so :p) as well as community outreach/education through Jazz St. Louis, as well as top-flight talent at the Bistro (every show I've been to has booked solid within a month prior to its date). The blues sub-genre is especially strong with quite a few venues like BBs, the Broadway Oyster Bar, and the Route 66 Roadhouse (where I was playing until I switched to the Kranzberg jam session on the same night). Although I guess you don't get as much variety there since most of those are focusing on blues/rock and mild country influences. But still, blues is a part of jazz so it's still a good sign in these here parts.

So yeah.

This rambling attempt at optimism is brought to you courtesy of Maker's Mark (tm). Lol
 

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Just like the other thread, there seems to be is no consensus and no real and meaningful source for the derivation of these terms, horizontal and vertical. To me it just seems like some kind of analyst's typical over-acadamising of jazz.

It has a much meaning as my previous coin of phrase of hindsight leading notes - just some bloke coming up with some specious pseudo musicological mumbo jumbo.
I think Bird really said it best:

Master your instrument, Master the music, and then forget all that ******** and just play.

Man, that dude was a philosopher.
 

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This is odd because I see people here say scales are horizontal, arpeggios are vertical. Giant steps has both scales and arpeggios. It's just jazz.
I became aware of the two terms in the late seventies. I believe Ramon Ricker published a book about it. (I may have the wrong author). Vertical and horizontal were just two visual terms. The book about horizontal improv discussed and gave examples of various approaches such as chromatic, over and under the target note to create and release tension. The studies were linear (or horizontal).

I agree. No improvisation will be strictly vertical or strictly horizontal. Citation of Giant Steps is a good example of very strong use of both approaches,
 

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Point 1
- Every time I go out to hear the best players in town, there's no one there but other jazz players. It seems like jazz is largely a cult of academia now, no longer fit for public consumption.

Point 2
- The oppressive bopper **** I hear people playing gets cheers and high fives from the all-player audience, but is inaccessible to the average listener, as evidenced by the fact that they stay away in droves.

Point 3
- It's a pyramid scheme.

Point 4
- I went back to the source, a genre of jazz still appreciated by almost anyone who hears it, and you don't need a music degree to appreciate it. It's wholly visceral, not cerebral. It requires no active listening, it reaches out and grabs people by the heart and that's how music should be, in my humble opinion.
After reading many of the replys in this thread I believe the majority support your original contention, directly although unknowingly (if you could play it you can understand it) and passively yet also unknowingly (if you listen to more of it you'll understand it). It would seem to hold water that Jazz is a cerebral experience which requires (exceptions exist) a strong knowledge of music or its construct to appreciate. Like literature (no one really reads Dostoyevsky unless their (academia) forced) It would also seem the population of listener is very very small. and tends to overwhelming be (at least in my and the OP's world) fellow musicians.

It seems too, that there is some contention to the term "Bopper ****" and the implications of the term '****' itself. Maybe a thicker skin on the reader's part or sensitivity training for the writer would have eliminated that conversation.

It does seem to be a circle of players and learners.

It also appears the mass of population funding (buying music and concert tickets) the musical arts prefers music which is of a simpler more easily understood form. Probably the same reason James Patterson novels and Super Hero movies are so popular.

Which then begs the question, is Jazz actually dead? Depends on the definition of dead. Is it defined by numbers of players, audience/sales or something else? As far as sales go, monies are still being spent to purchase the music and listen. Monies are being earned to create it. Livings are being made (though in many cases small) to play it live. It might not be profitable and it may not be appreciated widely inside or outside the circle of musicians. I'd have to believe the answer is no, it's not dead. It's clearly not as profitable as 'Taylor Swift's' "Shake it Off" but it might be on par with 'Millions of Dead Cop's tune "John Wayne was a Nazi"
 

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... It would seem to hold water that Jazz is a cerebral experience which requires (exceptions exist) a strong knowledge of music or its construct to appreciate. ... It would also seem the population of listener is very very small. and tends to overwhelming be (at least in my and the OP's world) fellow musicians.
It was not always this way. In fact, at least for the first half of the 20th century, jazz was music for dancing. You didn't need to know a thing about music to enjoy it and the audiences were not musicians.
 
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jazz is jazz. I played for a full house at Dizzy's last year and we had a great time. I just released an 8 CD set. I don't worry about all that other crap.

If I was a painter I wouldn't be worried about whether painting was a dead art. Or writer. Or weaver.

I you care about the music you just do it. There are still millions of people who love it. But I play and compose for the music, first.

It's been a privilege to play to it, to work with the musicians I've worked for. I mean, Julius Hemphill died for this music.

Everything else is irrelevant.
 

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It was not always this way. In fact, at least for the first half of the 20th century, jazz was music for dancing. You didn't need to know a thing about music to enjoy it and the audiences were not musicians.
Part of the problem, is the 'thing' called 'Jazz' by the average person. As an example each year we have a fantastic Jazz festival here in Minnesota's Twin Cities.
The festival is free, lasts three days has 250 local musicians performing and some heavy weight headliners performing on the main stage. The festival is very well attended. I believe I'd heard numbers exceeding 40,000 for the weekend. That could be a fabrication on my part. In addition to the outdoor Main Stage there are a number of indoor and outdoor stages nearby. It's been going on for more than 20 years and it is a true gift to the community here.

I invite a number of my family members (about 20) to attend each year and while some are all for it, others turn their nose up at the thought of Jazz. I don't always press them for a reason but when I have - They'll tell me what their definition of jazz is...and it's not to far from what I'd call 'Free Jazz' (of which there are only four fans in the world) so I get their trouble. Now when I break it down and ask, do you like so and so and whosie who? They nod vigorously in agreement and I smile and say "the music those cats played will be there too on the Main Stage."

It would seem the word 'Jazz' has gotten a bad rap. Jazz is no longer one thing. It's a multitude of styles, genres and sub genres. Some are tasty easy to consume pieces of music and others require a focused ear and strong listening skills that most people just don't have.

Take a look at the guy with the number 1 album on Billboard's Jazz Album chart. I don't know if they measure only in the U.S. but Michael Buble's album 'Love' has spent 39 WEEKS ON THE CHART! If I were to ask the people I know if they thought Michael Buble was Jazz they'd unanimously tell me no, they didn't think so. Clearly they'd be wrong. But that's neither here nor there.

It's all about branding and Michael Buble doesn't make a big deal out of the fact that he's a Jazz guy any more than Willie Nelson does even though he's also spent 48 weeks on that same chart and currently sits in the number ten spot. Yes I understand he's dragging cross overs (thank you Willie) from the country world.

Ignoring that Buble and Nelson are performing covers of songs which have been covered a million times by other artists and are historically popular. I don't believe it's a stretch to suggest the music both artists are flaunting on the Jazz chart to be a huge departure from the music Taylor swift performs. All three perform music which is easy to understand, snap fingers to the beat and shuffle their feet. I believe too they're not really performing what the OP was referencing as 'Jazz' in their initial post. But those cats are playing/singing jazz/ The average person just may not realize that's what they're listening to.
 

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jazz is jazz. I played for a full house at Dizzy's last year and we had a great time. I just released an 8 CD set. I don't worry about all that other crap.

If I was a painter I wouldn't be worried about whether painting was a dead art. Or writer. Or weaver.

I you care about the music you just do it. There are still millions of people who love it. But I play and compose for the music, first.

It's been a privilege to play to it, to work with the musicians I've worked for. I mean, Julius Hemphill died for this music.

Everything else is irrelevant.
Props to you Allen. Checked out your website and my curiosity is piqued!
 

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After reading many of the replys in this thread I believe the majority support your original contention, directly although unknowingly (if you could play it you can understand it) and passively yet also unknowingly (if you listen to more of it you'll understand it). It would seem to hold water that Jazz is a cerebral experience which requires (exceptions exist) a strong knowledge of music or its construct to appreciate. Like literature (no one really reads Dostoyevsky unless their (academia) forced) It would also seem the population of listener is very very small. and tends to overwhelming be (at least in my and the OP's world) fellow musicians.
To some extent I would question the contention that you need a strong knowledge of music to appreciate jazz. Way back as a youth in my late teens I came to love jazz--Sonny Rollins, Dexter Gordon, Bird, Dizzy, Mingus, the whole works. Ok, I did get there through the gateway of the blues and I was starting to learn to play the sax. However, at the time I knew next to nothing about music theory and I sure didn't understand what those great players were doing to get that sound. I just knew I loved it and not on a "cerebral level." It spoke to me on a "gut level" (and still does).

On a side note, I read Dostoyevsky in College and sure I was introduced to him in a philosophy class, but I still remember devouring a book of short stories, including "Notes from the Underground" not because I had to, but because I was fascinated with it. Then I read some of his novels after that, which weren't required reading. And I wasn't a literary geek by any means. I also read science fiction and mystery novels (still do).

Anyway, I think allenlowe and Minnesota really nailed it in their recent posts above. Play and listen to the music you love, period. And jazz covers such a huge, wide range that the term is really too general to have much meaning (although we know what it means!). I've played jazz tunes with my "blues band" and have had audience members come up and ask "hey, what was that great instrumental tune you played?" Even had a woman who I've heard proclaim that she hates jazz come up to us on the bandstand and say she loved the tune we just played and "what was it?" Turns out it was Blue Bossa.

Of course if a non musician (and plenty of musicians as well) happen to attend by accident a "free jazz" concert where a bunch of horn players are squealing away at the most outside sounds they can muster with no rhythmic sense, they will probably hate jazz forever.

And yeah Peter (MMM), jazz was dance music at one time and lots of non musicians danced to it.
 

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And yeah Peter (MMM), jazz was dance music at one time and lots of non musicians danced to it.
My dad was a huge jazz fan. He was a semi-pro dancer as a young man and loved to dance to his jazz 78's. He became a professor and really was "Dr. Jazz." This was one of his favorites, written by King Oliver and recorded by Jelly Roll Morton and his Red Hot Peppers (incl. Kid Ory on trombone) in 1926. This was some of the first jazz recorded.
 
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My dad was a huge jazz fan. He was a semi-pro dancer as a young man and loved to dance to his jazz 78's. He became a professor and really was "Dr. Jazz." This was one of his favorites, written by King Oliver and recorded by Jelly Roll Morton and his Red Hot Peppers (incl. Kid Ory on trombone) in 1926. This was some of the first jazz recorded.
My dad, who was a physician as well as a dixieland pianist, made this tune his theme song. I recited the lyrics at the end of his eulogy, and sang it with his band when we reunited last Mardi Gras. Never had the heart to tell him the song was really about a drug dealer...
 

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I think Bird really said it best:

Master your instrument, Master the music, and then forget all that **** and just play.

Man, that dude was a philosopher.
Today we take him too literally. Think how many never just play, because they do not think they have yet reached mastery.
 

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After reading a few more comments I thought I'd once again dip the toe...

While comments like "appreciation of jazz would be better if people were more educated to understand...blah, blah blah", may be slightly true, but miss the bigger picture. There are several inescapable truths:
1. Music and the arts are like fashion. They change over time and do not stand still. Reflecting on a past fashion can be a curiosity, but it won't be "popular" with the majority.
2. When an art form/music is based on an ego showing off their technical abilities it has a very limited audience. A performer who is just trying to impress is TAKING from their audience. A good/great performer GIVES to their audience. Even in Rock music the 5 minute ego guitar solo is a thing of the past.
3. Trying to play the music of a dead sax hero and in their style may be OK (for a short while for learning purposes), but is otherwise just as lame as any other "tribute" player. When the player has been dead for more than 50 years it doesn't even have tribute relevance.
4. If the jazz that's being referred is based on "standards", then there is another layer of obscurity. In the 1950s/60s jazz players were playing variations on tunes that everybody from that time knew. So there was that critical recognition of the tune which gave the variations relevance and a reference point. For 95% of today's public that reference doesn't exist.

Here's a question that I think is relevant (no answers required): Before you started playing sax did you listen to Jazz? I suspect that if most of you are honest you'd recognize that you didn't. The appreciation came through being taught/exposed. No doubt that players from earlier times were pioneers and some truly great musicians, so there is a lot to admire. For sure you should play whatever you like but recognize you're the one out of phase. The music world doesn't want to hear you bleat about not having an audience or that the public should be educated to appreciate you. .

I've heard a non logical comparison saying that 'Classical" music retains an audience so jazz should have a similar following. The obvious is that one is composed and the musicians faithfully recreate the music. Classical music has a better reach into the present than 1950s/60s jazz. Go see a movie or play a video game. Hear any jazz? Nope it's mostly Classical. The music sets a mood or tells a story. Jazz from the 1950s/60s is about the musician, and less about the emotions and experience of an audience. It was (supposedly) intellectual and yet mostly based in smoky bars and clubs where few people stopped talking. What jazz-o-files mostly listen to are studio recordings, whereas jazz was more of a live performance. Lots of live recordings exist and it's easy to hear that the audience was certainly not hanging off every clever note played...they were talking, hustling sex, drinking and smoking...sorry to say I was there and doing all of that myself. Stage/auditorium performances happened, where everybody just sat and listened, but they were rare.
 

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How many of the people commenting on the death of jazz have ever made a living playing music? Not just jazz, any kind of music? The thoughts of dilettantes and hobbyists have no real significance in any discussion of art. Some people devote their lives to things with no consideration for fame or fortune. More power to them.
 
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