Thursday, May 24, 2007

90s Jazz - a question of vibrancy

Carl Wilson digs Destination: Out's 90s Jazz poll, but questions whether such a poll is the right way to go if the object is to show how or indeed if jazz remains a vibrant, living, and evolving art form. Agreed, the selections won't really offer much insight into that question, but rather, they are just examples of what the contributors think are great jazz recordings from that decade.

Unless, of course, they are accompanied by comments of some sort. I myself tried to give a bit of insight into some of the selections I made in my (messy and uneditied, my apologies) comments below, notably Vandermark. But I could for example have written a bit more about what I think William Parker brings to jazz composition that I feel is new or "fresh" too - e.g. the almost narrative structure coupled with free jazz improvisations - although I think it may have just as much to do with his personal approach as it is an evolution of the genre.

Also, not all of my selections are good examples of an art form in evolution. The Pharoah Sanders record, for example, is a standards record, albeit a terrific one.

He poses an interesting question, though, and it deserves a closer look. Maybe when the final results are up they will spur a series of discussions on the topic in the blogosphere? Here's hoping they will.

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