Are there new songs? Play what’s recorded on gigs?

The venerability, relevance and novelty of the “jazz standard” is being questioned in the jazzosphere, but I wonder about the dearth of new songs

Jazz song composers Ellington and Strayhorn

that are sticking in my latest column in CityArts-New York. In my just- previous column I reviewed recent albums by a few musicians gigging in NYC, and warned there’s no reason to expect them to do live what they committed to record.

Abiding by space limits on both these columns, I didn’t expand as I would have, to say that while there aren’t necessarily new songs that are sticking with us or being played scene-wide, there are a lot of current musicians coming up with personal sounds (for themselves and/or their ensembles). And if I wasn’t completely blown away by any of albums I surveyed by players  around town last month, there are a couple of dozen recent releases that are rewarded repeated listening, and I’ll have to write about them soon — watch this space!

Meanwhile, I’m looking forward to attending the Newport Jazz Festival this weekend — it’s got a great lineup for Saturday and Sunday, and I’ll boil down a lot of impressions for coverage in my next CityArts-New York column, to be published Aug. 14.

howardmandel.com

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