Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. weekend ’18 was a big one for jazz in NYC with the first Jazz Congress at Jazz at Lincoln Center, a glorious Winter Jazz Fest, artists showcases at the conference of APAP (the Association of Performing Arts Presenters) and diverse independent venues — but not least of all the first ever (?!?) panel discussion of gender issues by four women who are professional jazz journalists (documented to vlogger Ms Michal Shapiro).
Above, Jordannah Elizabeth
Michelle Mercer, of NPR and DownBeat’s Hotbox reviewing section, author of books on Joni Mitchell and Wayne Shorter, moderated a candid 90-minute session with Jordannah Elizabeth (Amsterdam News, Ms. blog, author, lecturer and educator; ethnomusicologist, educator, writer and radio producer Lara Pelligrinelli, and Natalie Weiner, associate editor of Billboard, podcast co-host and writer on sports as well as jazz.
“Women in Jazz Journalism” was the morning opener of three discussions in a daylong Jazz Media Summit, free to the public, at the Jazz Gallery on January 13, produced by the Jazz Journalists Association. Some 60 people attended the discussions, many participating — including WBGO’s director of content Nate Chinen, singer Joan-Watson Jones, cellist Akua Dixon, flutist Andrea Brachfeld, Capital District media activist Susan Brink, saxophonist Roxie Coss, public relations expert Carolyn McClair and veteran jazz journalists such as David Adler, Steve Griggs, David Grogan, James Hale, Willard Jenkins, Ashley Kahn, Jimmy Katz, Jim Macnie, Bill Milkowski, Russ Musto, Don Palmer, Ted Panken, Greg Tate, Neil Tesser.
The Jazz Congress, Jan 11 and 12, produced by Jazz Times magazine (as it did the Jazz Connect Conference this congress has replaced) and Jazz At Lincoln Center — drew some 400 attendees from the international cadre of music makers and sustainers for intense schmoozing, a keynote speech by Kareem Abdul Jabbar, and also panel discussions. The Winter JazzFest Marathons on Friday and Saturday nights featured more than 50 performances in almost a dozen venues, from 6 pm to after 2 am. Both events to be covered in my next post. For now, consider the works of women in jazz journalism.