Nate Chinen, estimable New York Times music journalist, questions the effect of grants like the $253,000 announced by Chamber Music America for jazz composers: Are applicants pressed to create overly grand and pc projects? Ottawa Citizen blogger Peter Hum asks why Canada’s government supports jazz at all.
I don’t mind other people liking jazz. What people listen to behind closed doors is their own business. I accept it: Jazz happens. I just don’t see why we need to use tax dollars to promote it. . .
and a more straightforward putdown by Ottawa Citizen‘s Randall Denley headlined “Throwing Parties With Your Money” that starts with
The government of Canada is now so desperate to spend the billions of dollars it is borrowing that it is shoveling money out the door to New Orleans jazz musicians.
To pay tribute a woman who has shown incredible progressive judicial prowess, someone who has distinguished herself on so many levels, ,et alone come out of the Bronx, out of a housing project, and done such incredible and amazing things, it’s an opportunity of a lifetime.
Opportunities — to perform, to find audiences, to make statements, to take chances, to make livings — that’s what musicians (among other artists) need. Considering today’s economic realities, few of us are being too scrupulous about where the bucks for sustaining opportunities come from, but in truth no jazzer worth his or her name is conning anyone out of their dollars or loonies with sub-par music, which isn’t signficantly easier to realize or monetize if it’s a suite or multi-media experiment than if it’s a jam session. Let’s keep applauding governments that give jazz its propers, and clap in clavé for Judge Sotomayor upon her upcoming confirmation, without Republicans if need be.