Friday, August 31, 2007

"Indie" Jazz Artists

Today, like others, I received more than a handful of recordings from Jazz artists from a variety of places, some beyond the borders of the USA. This is a good thing. A very good thing. I love receiving these packages from these artists, I love hearing their music. It belies the rumor that Jazz is dead or dying, or that it doesn't receive the respect it once did.

One of the recordings that came today is "The Jazz Life" by saxophonist Bradford J. Hayes. An excellent recording by the way Bradford. I haven't yet had time to listen to them all, but I of course will. You'll have to listen to hear which get played on the air. I may eventually from time to time write in this blog space about others that I receive. Although, I hadn't thought of turning this blog into a Jazz record critiquing whatever, but I may write about those that impact me the most. Like the physical feeling I had the first time I heard and felt the immensely spiritual strength of Pharoah Sanders.....that's another post. Perhaps.

Back on point. Bradford referred to himself as an "unknown Indie" and then went on to say "...I need you all there. All Jazz musicians need you." I'm sure the "you" wasn't only me he was referring to. I feel certain that his comment was relative to the impact that not only the few full-time terrestrial Jazz radio stations that are left can have, but the huge impact that internet broadcasters have on the exposure these Jazz musicians can get. More and more people are turning to the internet for their music. The world of internet broadcasting has become something akin to the Jazz lofts where a musician could hang out and play, thus being heard. Internet broadcasts have become very much what college stations were 30 years ago when I started doing radio on KCRW. We didn't, but we could have referred to Vinny Golia as an "Indie Jazz" artist in 1977. He was just starting to produce recordings on his Nine Winds label, which by the way is still producing marvelous recordings 3 decades later.

While there are people in D.C. who are still debating whether or not they are going to let laws pass that would silence many, many internet broadcasters small and large, I am going to continue producing Jazz from Gallery 41. I have goals for the program. There are satellites flying around out there and I'd like to find one with my name on it, in the mean time however, whether it is 10 or 1000 people listening at any one time, I am going to produce the best shows I can. Just like these musicians I'm certain do every time they pick up their instrument. It comes from the heart this music. It encourages me to continue doing what I am, yet it is also very humbling to receive comments like the one from Bradford J. Hayes. It isn't about me (although in three decades of doing this I have met one or two dj's whose egos were so overblown they would try to make you believe the show was about them...that too, perhaps, is another post). So, let's all say it together... It's about the music. Thank you for playing it everybody. You all keep doing that, and I'll keep doing whatever I can to get it to an audience.

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