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Why dosen't anyone want to play jazz?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Alan Vorse, Sep 16, 2005.

  1. Here's my story. I just turned 31. Over the last 10 years, I have played in a number of rock groups with some kind of adjective in the beginning (experimental, progressive, funk) with varying degrees of success.
    The music that I love the most, the music that makes me happy, the music that my own original compositions are inspired by is stuff like:
    David Fiuczynski/Screaming Headless Torsos, Medeski Martin and Wood, Steve Coleman's Five Elements, Decoding Society, Tribal Tech, Headhunters, Mahavishnu Orchestra.
    I figured out a long time ago that you meet people who play this kind of music when you go to school for music (esp Berklee). I couldn't go to college, but have had a string of private teachers and feel I am at a level to play music like this.
    In my town, there is a descent Traditional jazz scene (don't have Double Bass) and even a free jazz scene (I know what its like to play empty rooms from playing prog rock ;) ). I have put out numerous ads with little results. I do have a badass drummer who can do the whole Weckl/Vinnie/Chambers thing, so its a start, but guitarists want to play metal and keyboardists have paying gigs.
    Is there any way to find these types of players short of moving to New York?
  2. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    Check your local community college's music department. There's a good chance they'll have some kind of jazz band. Minneapolis is a big city, so there must be some underground scene you haven't tapped into.

    I know you said you couldn't go, but I think that you should make an effort and look there.
  3. DaftCat


    Jul 26, 2004
    Medicine Hat
    To add to Blackbird.... What about Universty campuses?

    Try some beatnik coffee shops and see if they have a Jazz night.

    Hope this helps,
  4. Passinwind

    Passinwind I Know Nothing Supporting Member Commercial User

    Dec 3, 2003
    Columbia River Gorge, WA.
    Owner/Designer &Toaster Tech Passinwind Electronics
    I've been trying for years to find someone locally who even knows who Steve Coleman is ! Oddly enough, I've found hip-hop guys to be the most receptive to the edgy and/or funky jazz style you're talking about. Jambase types dig MMW and Scofield a lot too, and I've been surprised at some of the jazzers I've met who are "slumming" in hippie bands. You could also just try doing the duo thing with your drummer, which is what I did for a few years. Maybe you'll get lucky and someone will want to join the party if you're already out gigging?

    It might not hurt to get involved in playing trad jazz in some fashion too. I bought an EUB and took a trad gig, and it's made a huge difference in the opportunities I'm getting to play outside the box as well. The sax player from my trad band heard me going off at a party, and has asked to be included in the next incarnation of my originals band. I've been waiting for this for a long, long time, hope you do better! :cool:
  5. Jazzin'

    Jazzin' ...Bluesin' and Funkin'

    Move to Montreal!