Jazz music is an important part of American culture, it may not be as popular as pop music in America, but it is still a popular choice. In fact, in a survey conducted in 2018 to find out what type of music American people like to listen to, Jazz music ranked 8 out of 12 on the list. According to the report, more people listen to Jazz than Reggie, Heavy Metal and Classical music.
The popularity of Jazz continues to grow with more younger people becoming fans. According to recent research there are more than 63 million people living in America who enjoy Jazz music, and part of that is down to The Jazzsippers Consortium.
The Jazzsippers Consortium helps to promote Jazz by and one promotion they are doing now is a virtual run. So, we decided to speak to them to find out more about them and Jazz and their virtual 5K race. Here is what they had to say.
- First of all, please introduce yourself.
My Name Aurwin Nicholas Sr., and I’m self-proclaimed Jazzsipper. Which basically means that I’m a Jazz Connoisseur who savour the sipping taste of eclectic vibes that enhances one’s lifestyle through sipping Jazz.
I’m always moving through life sipping and savouring every aspect of what life has to offer within the spirit of a roaring lion. In essence my view of life is seen through a prism of Jazz, with the core understanding that Jazz is more than a genre of music. But a vibrant breathing lifestyle that’s outwardly displayed through my body; heart; soul, and mind!
- You are one of the members of The Jazzsippers Consortium, can you explain more about the group?
We are a collective group of liked mined individuals that are coming together to do our part through assisting each other in bringing Jazz back to the forefront of American music. What we do is embedded in our simple but, yet powerful core message. And that is, we do three things, (1) Promote Jazz Advocacy through providing advocacy guidance that can be taken on individually, or collectively as a group endeavour to highlight Jazz importance to America History. (2) Promote Jazz Appreciation through finding, and creating innovative entrepreneurial approaches, along with strategies that’s design to engage the public awareness as whole consensually and sub consensually about Jazz, using a mass media vehicle like local community Jazz themed monthly newspapers that are distributed to the community for free and allows for induvial Jazzsippers, to work and live their passions and be able to receive an equitable monetary return on their efforts. (3) Promote Jazz Appreciation through providing pathways for younger individuals to become aware of Jazz, through strategic alliances with youth-based organizations and providing 3rd party services to help them manage their organizations, and to act as focal point in assisting their youth, in Job Training; Art Awareness; Mentoring, and Tutoring. W e at The Jazzsippers Consortium see this as an excellent opportunity to expose a younger wider eclectic audience to Jazz, by having Jazz in action, through the Art Awareness, and Mentoring components of this concept we can teach, inform, and show that Jazz is alive and a genre to be reckon with. So, here at The Jazzsippers Consortium we believe that enforcing, and living our core mission, we together can affect the outcome of the trajectory of Jazz and not only make it relevant again from cultural perspective but form an economical perspective as well.
- So, your website mentions make a difference today, what do you mean by that?
Simple, promoted it in some form of another and educate as many people as possible you can about it!
- April is Jazz Appreciation Month, why is it so important to celebrate Jazz?
Because, when we look back at America History through all its trials; tribulations; and triumphs the one constant, once Jazz! That in it self-speak volumes of the Historical importance that Jazz played in the building of Americana, its wars that she fought, the building of race relations that it helped to change, our education policies that it affected, the persona of a nation of complicated coolness that it echoed around world and much, much more!
- Buddy Bolden, was African American bandleader called “the first man of jazz”, but a lot of people who are knew to Jazz don’t recognize that name, why is it important for more people to be aware of Buddy Bolden and what he did for Jazz music?
Because he alone helped in the beginning of which is known as Jazz, to single handily helped to make Jazz popular through his improvisations that was not by choice, but by the simple fact he couldn’t read music which led to him becoming identify as the father of Jazz. Before Bouldin Jazz didn’t have a residency, it had different sounds coming different ethic groups. He brought all those different musical nuances together to create a new art form that became world renowned. So, to understand Jazz, you must know Buddy Bolden and his significance to this American art form. He basically set in motion, a circular musical metamorphosis with the restrictiveness of the parameters of being in a musical box. Which makes playing Jazz challenging process.
- Jazz has often been referred as the Devil’s music, why is that?
Because of where it got it roots, inside brothels and speakeasies. Along with the fact when it was a popular music for teenagers to dance to, the dancing that was be done was gyrating type of dancing, which was consider back then as being sexual in nature and uncivilized. Jazz came about when American was still holding and practicing a Puritanism mind set.
- You have announced a virtual race to celebrate Jazz, can you tell me more about that, and how a virtual race can celebrate Jazz music?
It helps in supporting Jazz based initiatives in promoting Jazz Appreciation; Jazz Awareness; and Jazz Advocacy, while brining Jazz to the forefront and allowing Jazzsippers to work collectively in these endeavours.
- How can people apply to take part in the virtual race?
Go to our website www.thejazzsippersconsortium.org and register for this Global Highted Event, or by contacting us via email at: email@example.com
- New Orleans is the birthplace of Jazz, but where would you say is the second-best place to go in the world to listen to Jazz?
That is easy Europe, since its heyday it has been a popular and receptive place for Jazz music.
- I hear a lot of people say that Jazz is neglected compared to other music such as country, and pop, what would you say to that?
I would say that is a true statement, but I would go on to say, that if any of those other genre’s music went from being the lead dog to just a team dog, they probably be neglected as well and may not even be around. Take in consideration at one point I read that Jazz had a market share 97 percent and now it has a market share well below 3 precent and have been in existence for over 100 plus years, and we’re still talking about. I think if Jazz were to show a up tic in its trajectory of records sales that would start changing immediately.
- When we look at talent competitions such as American Idol, they ignore Jazz Music, why is that?
Well popularity, and that’s our fault as Jazzsippers, we spend money like everyone else, but we don’t advocate for its presence, like other genre of music lovers do for their music preferences.
- Would you like to see more schools teach jazz?
Yes, I would like it to be a class elective option for High Schoolers, and Middle Schoolers throughout America. I think Jazz is an Art form that requires discipline to play the music, but it requires discipline to listen to it as well. So, what we better way to teach discipline and it’s and it benefits to young people, in life everything we do requires certain discipline, and with Jazz you get even more of benefit you get to teach American History as well.
- Like with all the Arts, Jazz has been hit hard with the COVID19 pandemic, do you believe Jazz venues will recover?
Absolutely, Jazz is a up close intimate relationship with the musicians and their listeners, and people are intimate beings. It allows people to reflect cognitively in the present, now conceptually you can do that at home listening to a great Jazz album, but it’s the next best thing, and not the best thing, my experience as Jazzsipper is to get that authenticated feeling, is to be their live in present, and I believe other Jazzsippers who love this music feel the same way, and as the country opens back safely you more and more people venturing to these venues.
- Do you believe with all the work that you are doing to promote Jazz, that we can expect more of the younger generation to keep Jazz alive?
Yes, young people for the most part are inquisitive, explores; and innovators Jazz as an Art Form allows young people to reach into it and do those things. Between 2018 – 2019 Spotify told the Guardian that about 40% of jazz listening on the streaming website is done by people under 30, with the percentage holding steadily since 2014. So, I think there is a great underlining of interest in Jazz by our youth, but we have as an industry been slow to react to that interest. But as Jazzsippers it’s essential that we take up arms and band together as an army of Jazz Lovers and address that interest.