I personally feel Jazz is an expression of the an artist’s deep emotional connection to the rhythms of life and the search for their identity among life’s reallocates of experiences and capabilities, always ready to improvise to the ever changing environment. I think the most important thing about jazz is that it is America’s music. Reflecting its birthplace of Storyteller, a small section near the French Quarter In New Orleans, Jazz too has the influence of whites of English and French descent, Blacks and immigrants from the Caribbean and other European countries.
After the closing of Storyteller In 1917 Jazz was further developed and refined In Chicago and New York. I was formally Introduced to Jazz on Thursday September 27, 2012. All I knew about jazz was that it was a form of music. I didn’t really understand what jazz was. That was until I went with a fellow music student to a jam session at the 57th Street Gallery to review a live performance. The Gallery was small but quaint. Not really a place you would expect to find a live music performance of any sort.
There was no large stage with an elaborate lighting system with bright lasers reflecting off a disco ball or a huge surround sound system with speakers bigger than me, but there was a simple raised area with a piano, a drum set and a couple of microphones. Which I eventually found out, is all you need when It comes to playing a Jam session of Jazz. The walls were decorated with paintings of various famous musicians which I felt maybe gave a sense of Inspiration to anyone who played there. There was only about a handful of people In the audience, mostly made up of women of various ethnicities and that were of an older generation.
The session was to begin a little after the time I arrived which was 8 pm. I started to get discouraged when there was only one guy in the playing area warming up. Rather than feeling discouraged, I decided to use that time as an opportunity to try and talk with the gentlemen warming up. His name was Michael Jones and he was laying the stand-up bass. He didn’t seem concerned or worried given the fact it was already past the start time and there weren’t any other musicians there yet. He was happy to be playing his Instrument Just Jamming out by himself.
After I introduced myself I explained to him that I was a music student and I was there to do a review on the style of Jazz and the musicians that played It. He was more than happy to talk about his passion for music and Jazz In general. Next I had the pleasure of meeting a wonderful woman who Mr.. Jones had pointed out as an amazing singer, who just Crawford. Stephanie was exposed to music at an early age, as were most people growing up in the ass’s and ass’s, when the piano was considered an essential home furnishing. It was part of her culture growing up in Detroit.