It happens all the time: a poem gets turned into a song; a linguist will write a poem or poetic description of a work of art; a painting may even be drawn based on the emotional response an artist had to a piece of music. Although instances of this transformation of one art medium into another has happened frequently throughout history, the debate is open (especially in philosophical circles) whether this transformation is either possible, or worth the effort.
The music scene in Toronto and around the world was forever changed in 1968 when valve trombonist Rob McConnell formed his flagship ensemble The Boss Brass. McConnell, a London, Ontario native, gathered some of the top studio musicians from around the city to form what would become one of the most swinging, recognizable, and influential big bands among his contemporaries
Making a living as a musician of any breed is not a simple path to embark upon. Not only do we have the task of making enough money to afford room and board, but we also have a long musical legacy to respect and find our place in. For this blog entry, I thought I would take the reader through various tenures the ‘jazz’ musician may have found themselves in throughout the history of the genre. (Jazz-o-philes beware! This is meant to be a brief overview!)
It’s difficult to put into words how much jazz musicians have to constantly prove their worth in the music industry. Our validity as modern musicians is an apparently debatable thing in today’s realm of artistic expression and to be brushed off as nothing more than a relic from the swing era is an unfortunately common occurrence. Over and over I have heard the question “why not perhaps consider putting on an event that is less old fashioned?” and the statement “jazz is an extinct genre”.