26 March 2011

Exercises in Complainbrag

Phil Freemen interviewed the jazz-famous pianist ELEW this week, and I read it (overcoming an admittedly first instinct to ignore the interview). If you do not like his brand of jazz, the interview will likely not change your mind about it. Regardless, it is an interesting read, mainly for the People don't understand me, probably because I'm too awesome for them vibe ELEW gives off. He's clearly spent a lot of time thinking about the music, and what it all means, but he has a habit of complainbragging. 

Here are some actual quotes from ELEW, devoid of any context:
I, having won the Thelonious Monk Competition only to be ignored by the aforementioned jazz labels like a non-connected jerkoff outside of a chic nightclub trying to get a bouncer to bend the admission rules, was pissed off and growing increasingly disenchanted with touring the world with the likes of Wynton Marsalis and Elvin Jones, ruminating in a musical cone of ’60s-era activism pathology.

I was ridiculed by the New York Times for stating that the screams of Chester Bennington reminded me of late-period John Coltrane‘s wails on the saxophone.

My work is quite conceptually identical to the work of Erroll Garner, Fats Waller, Duke Ellington and Art Tatum.

Also I have more reason to be pissed off, which fuels my determination and creativity in the face of abject hopelessness and socio-economic roadblocks.

People like me make people like [Wynton Marsalis] hostile. As his type should be about people like me.

But branding eclipses righteousness or being correct.
RTHTH. I don't listen to ELEW, his music does not connect with me. Also, I find his incessant need to present himself as something pure in an ocean of artifice grating (and his self-proclaimed lack of artifice is a form of artifice itself). But as far as I can tell, he seems to be sincere about his music, so I can't get real worked up the way some in the anti-ELEW crowd do.

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