What is Jazz

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Re: What is Jazz

Post by Sam Spoons »

What about Western Swing?
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Re: What is Jazz

Post by OneWorld »

Sam Spoons wrote: Sat Feb 04, 2023 11:31 pm What about Western Swing?

This bloke, in defining western swing........

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DLVJenO26Js

Said western swing is hard to define, it is many things, but there is definitely one thing that what western thing isn't, and that's country?

I like west swing though......

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JVT5saGp1Wc

Important thing is, I played guitar along with it, and the eSsential 7#9 chord fits!
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Re: What is Jazz

Post by awjoe »

Jazz is whatever jazz musicians say it is.

Miles is jazz. (I've been listening to 'In a Silent Way' for the last three days.)
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Re: What is Jazz

Post by Arpangel »

Do we really need to ask this question?
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Re: What is Jazz

Post by merlyn »

GilesAnt wrote: Sat Feb 04, 2023 8:34 pm I agree harmony alone can't be the defining characteristic though it is an important one. I would suggest rhythm is a more defining characteristic - especially thinking back to the origins of jazz.

They could be equally important. Jazz educator Mike Longo said :

Jazz is the marriage of African rhythm and European harmony.

The cyclic form is also important, which may be the influence of Scottish and Irish folk music. And, of course, improvisation. I think a lot of people don't get jazz because they hear the solos as random. They don't hear the form -- the tune -- going underneath the solos.

One thing jazz is is the only American art form.

GilesAnt wrote: Sat Feb 04, 2023 8:34 pmOne of the earliest manifestations of jazz was Ragtime.

Ragtime isn't jazz as such to me, as there is no improvisation.

GilesAnt wrote: Sat Feb 04, 2023 8:34 pmIf you remove the syncopations from say Scott Joplin's The Entertainer it sounds not unlike popular music of classical derivation like Sousa's marches.

I see what you're saying, that syncopation is important, but de-syncopate The Entertainer and there isn't much left. Here is the first phrase of The Entertainer, with the syncopation marked :
Image
Now, take that out :
Image
Pretty lame, don't you think? :D

GilesAnt wrote: Sat Feb 04, 2023 8:34 pmConversely, add some syncopation to The Liberty Bell (Monty Python theme music) and you arrive more or less at Ragtime. We still use the phrase "to jazz it up".

The phrases in Liberty Bell end on downbeats, and there is not a lot of room to shuffle notes around.
Image
Those with delicate sensibilities look away now. The fact is Scott Joplin, being black, was coming more from the black tradition, and Sousa, being white, was coming more from the white tradition.
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Re: What is Jazz

Post by GilesAnt »

merlyn wrote: Sun Feb 05, 2023 10:46 am
Pretty lame, don't you think? :D

Yes and that is more or less my point. I was trying to suggest that jazz is characterised by syncopated rhythms more so than the harmony or melodies. Without the syncopations we have a 'lame' parlour piece of more or less classical origin.

Put that Sousa march into a 4/4 beat with swing and that can easily be jazz. Sorry I don't have the technology on hand to show.

Well done for going to the trouble of demonstrating this in detail by the way!

And yes, I know ragtime isn't truly jazz, but it probably marks the point at which jazz separated from the mainstream at that time.
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Re: What is Jazz

Post by OneWorld »

GilesAnt wrote: Sun Feb 05, 2023 11:44 am
merlyn wrote: Sun Feb 05, 2023 10:46 am
Pretty lame, don't you think? :D

Yes and that is more or less my point. I was trying to suggest that jazz is characterised by syncopated rhythms more so than the harmony or melodies. Without the syncopations we have a 'lame' parlour piece of more or less classical origin.


Really?????

Listen to the following, the full 11:00 minutes, and by the way, if this isn't jazz then what is it.

Gato Barbieri

Intro/Cancion/Tango (00:00 - 11:13) from the album The Third World (1969)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pp5XcEi8cvc
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Re: What is Jazz

Post by GilesAnt »

OneWorld wrote: Sun Feb 05, 2023 12:17 pm
Listen to the following, the full 11:00 minutes, and by the way, if this isn't jazz then what is it.

I haven't said that isn't jazz - I'm not quite sure what specific point you are alluding to.

My remarks on suggesting that rhythm was perhaps the supreme defining characteristic of jazz were placed in a context of early jazz because we can get some glimpses there into how it emerged from earlier genres and forms.

Modern jazz is much more free of course.
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Re: What is Jazz

Post by OneWorld »

GilesAnt wrote: Sun Feb 05, 2023 12:31 pm
OneWorld wrote: Sun Feb 05, 2023 12:17 pm
Listen to the following, the full 11:00 minutes, and by the way, if this isn't jazz then what is it.

I haven't said that isn't jazz - I'm not quite sure what specific point you are alluding to.

My remarks on suggesting that rhythm was perhaps the supreme defining characteristic of jazz were placed in a context of early jazz because we can get some glimpses there into how it emerged from earlier genres and forms.

Modern jazz is much more free of course.

The point is.......just asking
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Re: What is Jazz

Post by GilesAnt »

OneWorld wrote: Sun Feb 05, 2023 3:41 pm The point is, jazz is many things to many people and I am perplexed as to why we have this need to put everything in a box like we do with washing powder or whatever. The original question was ‘What is Jazz’ and not ‘What were the origins of jazz’

We were discussing some of the most important musical elements that distinguish jazz. By looking at the origins of jazz it is easier to see what these elements might be. Obviously things are so diverse nowadays that the picture will be more obscured.

Jazz is about other things too of course, but we just happened to be talking about these aspects.
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Re: What is Jazz

Post by OneWorld »

GilesAnt wrote: Sun Feb 05, 2023 4:15 pm
OneWorld wrote: Sun Feb 05, 2023 3:41 pm The point is, jazz is many things to many people and I am perplexed as to why we have this need to put everything in a box like we do with washing powder or whatever. The original question was ‘What is Jazz’ and not ‘What were the origins of jazz’

We were discussing some of the most important musical elements that distinguish jazz. By looking at the origins of jazz it is easier to see what these elements might be. Obviously things are so diverse nowadays that the picture will be more obscured.

Jazz is about other things too of course, but we just happened to be talking about these aspects.

I'm still none the wiser. It seems if I play a piece of music, then add 7#9 chord it becomes jazz, really? Well I'll t'top of our stairs
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Re: What is Jazz

Post by GilesAnt »

OneWorld wrote: Sun Feb 05, 2023 5:12 pm I'm still none the wiser. It seems if I play a piece of music, then add 7#9 chord it becomes jazz, really? Well I'll t'top of our stairs

Nobody is saying that. There are many elements to jazz, but the 7#9 is one characteristic feature. Most of the elements individually occur elsewhere in music, but when many are combined it looks and sounds a lot like jazz.
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