10 March 2009

Runnin' the Voodoo Down

  • The fiftieth anniversary of Thelonious Monk's Town Hall concert was celebrated with a pair of concerts by Jason Moran and Charles Tolliver: Fred Kaplan, Ben Ratliff, and Will Friedwald have recaps and comments. Below the links is a video of Moran discussing Monk and preforming "Crepescule with Nellie." (UPDATE: Kaplan also filed a piece on the concerts in Slate today. Read it here).
  • Jazzhouse Diaries posted a paper by Mark Gridley examining the linkages between free jazz and the Civil Rights Movement in the 1960s. It's quite long, but provides a long-overdue counterpoint to the narrative first propogated by Amiri Baraka and Frank Kofsky which placed free jazz squarely within the context of 1960s Black Nationalism.
  • Between the Grooves takes a look at singer/guitarist Madeleine Peyroux.
  • Doug Ramsey examines a recently-unearthed 1956 television performance of the Dave Brubeck Quartet.
  • There is some wonderful jazz photography being shown at Jazz in Photo.
  • This isn't about jazz per se, but interesting to me nonetheless. The LA Times filed a story last week about the increasing number of nonblack faculty teaching African American Studies at US colleges and universities. The piece elicited an interesting response from Keith Josef Adkins on The Root, who recalled questioning the authenticity of white instructors in a graduate seminar on Black Culture and Experience. He writes, "When most students think of Black Studies they imagine 'sanctuary' and a white professor (brilliant or not) is not part of that imagining." This is a subject I once thought about a lot as a white graduate student studying African American history, and one that continues to reveal a certain sense of friction within Academe.

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