What’s with all that ‘Jazz’?

…For Jazz is like not knowing the ground for the next step.


As we entered twentieth century, behind us were the musical riches of a great civilization, but twentieth century was not going to be defined by classical music, the glory was destined to be somewhere else. Bach set the benchmark for the classical music that succeeded him. With his extraordinary mathematical harmonies and profound melodies of Beethoven–throw in the genius Mozart and later romanticists like Chopin to complete the picture— the canon of western classical music seemed to have been sailing without any rival. But the discipline of classical music was never going to fall in line with the experience of our messy, tumultuous twentieth century. In place of textually refined sheet music, a taste for free creation, spontaneous making of music was gaining currency. This new music was termed Jazz.

Imagine a jazz melody: a flurry of notes running from lowest to highest registers, an astonishingly rapid succession of scales;feels like a chest full of sounds suddenly opened. The approach of careful measurement and trimming of the sounds, as is the case with classical music, is replaced in Jazz with maximization. It gives place to every sound, every expression, and let the entire personality of the musician fuse with the music.

Briefly, a jazz band chiefly consists of wind instruments accompanied by a keyboard instrument and a bass, mostly covered by a string instrument. The melodic component of music comes from wind instruments and some of the common ones include Saxophone, Clarinet, Flute and Trumpet.

It’s been a few decades since the demise of late great saxophonist John Coltrane and he is great in more ways than one. Largely self-taught, by the time he started collaborating with other musical giants of his age, his talents were quite obvious. He was the most talked about musician of his time garnering universal acclaim for his dense improvisations, his classic album ‘Giant Steps’, and his friendly rivalry with Miles Davis.

Jazz Music

The collaborations with The lonius Monk, Miles Davis (There is a reason why Miles Davis can’t be named enough, he is up there brushing shoulders with “the Trane”) and Eric Dolphy are part of the jazz legend now and one of greatest acts in the history of music.


Also related: Electronic Music In India

What if I want to pursue Jazz? What sort of instructions should i take? What sort of training should I be looking for? All these questions inadvertently come to the budding musicians’ mind while harbouring a desire to make it big. Although there are schools around for virtually everything, Jazz is still one of those genres of music that flowers with stubborn practice and individual discovery. The highlight of Jazz, apart from the music, is a kind of personal acquaintance with the instrument, whether it is Saxophone or clarinet or Flute. In absence of any written rules, Jazz gives the musicians freedom to explore the expressive possibilities of the instrument. No wonder Dolphy’s flute and Monk’s piano don’t sound like anything heard before.

Again– one can’t underline this enough– Finding one’s own sound is a feeling beyond comparison and is almost a spiritual joy. You just need to pick ‘your’ instrument and start toying around, as if it’s a labour of love. Hurry, hurry, hurry is all the background we can give for now.
While you prepare to give wings to your musician, awide range of flutes, saxophones and trumpets is up on Buxsa for sale.

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