New Old Jazz Blues

When Ornette played the blues
He blew with passion not fashion
Freeing jazz from restriction
With conviction
Energising his need
With fresh blown reed
New wave harmolodics
No time histrionics
Jazz played free
Can’t you see

Now Wynton
The jazz that you play today
It don’t have to be that way
It’s cold not cool
It’s old you fool
Those Lincoln Centre stuffed shirts
Will never make that gig work
Don’t play their part
Get to the heart
Forget history admit mystery

Mr Pine with your hip-hop
You don’t know when it’s time to stop
That new mix is all froth
Too many licks can spoil that broth
Holding one note without breath
Is causing a jazz death
There’s no need to showboat
It’s cut throat

So young people
Who play right now
Take a knife to that sacred cow
With free expression
Every session
Just cut out the excess
Don’t blow to impress
Move forward your own way

Just play

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I wrote this poem as my take on an old debate between the free jazz lobby and the musicians who wanted to dumb down jazz (in my opinion) by trying to ‘fit in’ with the current pop music fashions. Also those who try to re-create ‘old’ jazz styles, to make it ‘easier’ for commercial consumption.


jazz, music, free, fashion, blues, ornette coleman, wynton marsalis, courtney pine

Nobody’s perfect…

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  • martinilogic
    martinilogicalmost 5 years ago

    Denis, your prose are sublime, they even rhyme, Dude, you blew my mind…
    seriously this is awesome and it hits the mark dead on

  • Hey Rick. Thanks so much for that. I was wondering if anyone out there in Bubbleland would get what the hell I was talking about. Wynton… yeah, a lovely guy and educator, but like you say, no soul. So glad you picked up on this. Cheers my man!

    – Jazzdenski

  • martinilogic
    martinilogicalmost 5 years ago

    Oh, you are right about wynton…. he is a virtuoso…….but doesn’t play with soul…

  • martinilogic
    martinilogicalmost 5 years ago

    you should submit this to the JaZZED up art group..

  • I was going to, but the box was empty. No submissions it says.

    – Jazzdenski

  • BabyM2
    BabyM2over 3 years ago

    You can rhyme your passion shows in this write wordplay

  • Thanks a lot for that. As you can see I haven’t had many
    comments on this. A tad too obscure perhaps? Glad it chimed with you

    – Jazzdenski

  • Clo Sed
    Clo Sedover 3 years ago

    I love the text
    Even in jazz, we need to put people in “boxes”
    but in anything , why do we love borders so much……
    thanks you sent me the link

  • So true Magali. Traditional; New Orleans; Chicago: Dixieland; Swing; Be-bop; Hard Bop; West Coast; East Coast; Cool; Hot; Free: Avante Garde; not to mention European and not forgetting, Le Jazz Hot! Long may it continue. What box are we in mon ami?

    – Jazzdenski

  • Clo Sed
    Clo Sedover 3 years ago

    what box ?
    The one with no walls ….

  • Exactement!!!

    – Jazzdenski

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