vendredi, septembre 08, 2006

Learning to Listen

The following is a posting that illustates a free jazz course being offered in New York:

The Jazz Museum in Harlem
104 East 126th Street
New York, NY 10035


The Jazz Museum in Harlem proudly announces its new, free jazz course, JAZZ FOR CURIOUS LISTENERS. Classes will be held at the Museum’s offices (104 East 126th Street, accessible by the 2/3/4/5/6 trains, the M60, 101, Bx15 buses and Metro-North) TUESDAYS, 7 p.m. - 8:30 p.m., September 19th through December 12th, and will be led by the Museum’s Executive Director Loren Schoenberg and guest instructors.

Topics covered will include:

How to Listen to Jazz
Classic Jazz Albums
Harlem’s Jazz Legacy
Ellington and The Cotton Club
Louis Armstrong in New York
Living Jazz Musicians You Should Know About But Probably Don’t
Jazz Demystified
Classic and rare jazz films

Over the past four years, the JAZZ MUSEUM IN HARLEM has distinguished itself through its programming dedicated to celebrating Harlem’s legacy. Led by Co-Directors Loren Schoenberg and Christian McBride, the Museum’s concerts, educational programs in the public schools, the HARLEM SPEAKS interview series, and other initiatives, all presented free of charge, continue into the fall with a new addition: JAZZ FOR CURIOUS LISTENERS. Loren Schoenberg, currently on the faculty of The Juilliard Institute for Jazz Studies, has previously taught at The Manhattan School of Music, The New School, William Paterson College, SUNY/Purchase, and Long Island University. He has lectured at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Museum of The City Of New York, Columbia University, Leeds University, Brigham Young University, just to name a few. His book, THE NPR CURIOUS LISTENER’S GUIDE TO JAZZ will be used as the textbook for the course. As a musician, Mr. Schoenberg has worked with, among others, Wynton Marsalis, Benny Goodman, John Lewis, Benny Carter, Jimmy Heath, Jo Jones, Buck Clayton, James Williams, Christian McBride, Marian McPartland, Bobby Short, Sylvia Syms, Ella Fitzgerald, Dave Schildkraut and Eddie Durham. He has conducted the jazz orchestras at Lincoln Center, the Smithsonian and Juilliard, as well as the American Jazz Orchestra, The WDR band in Cologne, Germany, and for the past his 26 years, the Loren Schoenberg Jazz Orchestra.

To register, please call the Museum’s offices at 212-348-8300 or go to the Museum’s newly redesigned website.

I signed up already! I love jazz but I'm ashamed to say that up until this point, I have been a lazy jazz listener. I appreciate the improvisation, tonal switches and melodic mellifluousness that jazz affords but, as I said before, I'm a lazy listener. Which is surprising because I tend to be a pretty good one when I'm with others but when I'm with myself, my thoughts intervene with the music. Perhaps this class, along with jalylah's 52s club, will help me sophisticate my listeneing techniques. Next week, the Rose Theatre Wynton Marsalis and the Jazz at Lincoln Center ensemble will perform a show entitled "Coltrane", a tribute to the late master. I'm going to try to go. I myself don't boast a significant knowledge of jazz but I certainly do wield a voracity for it. Although, it seems kind of hard for me to find someone my age who has the same reverence and appreciation for it as I do. Which leads me to the questions: Are you a good listener? Do you know how to listen to jazz?

small beer, noun: 1. Weak beer. 2. Insignificant matters; something of little importance. adj:1. Unimportant; trivial.

"It may be that the satisfaction I need depends on my going away, so that when I've gone and come back, I'll find it at home"
--- Rumi