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ARSCLIST  April 2013

ARSCLIST April 2013

Subject:

Re: revisiting an old thread -- jazz anthologies

From:

Arthur Gaer <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Association for Recorded Sound Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Thu, 4 Apr 2013 14:20:36 -0400

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Just a quick note: I saw Ken Burns speaking about his Jazz series on a panel with Stanley Crouch at Harvard at the time of the initial broadcasts.

Burns was pretty emphatic that Wynton Marsalis had little to do with the content or structure of the series.  That they didn't talk to Marsalis until they were well into the production of the series  when the content and structure had already been established, and that they basically just did one three-hour interview that was interspersed throughout the series.

I probably have some of the details wrong (the talk was twelve years ago) but Burns was quite adamant that Marsalis did not guide the series.  So Burns may have adopted Marsalis's outlook as part of his conventional narrative, but unless Burns was deliberately dissembling in his discussion, Marsalis wasn't the one who was controlling the history in the series.

So it may be that Marsalis *would have* or (even did) discuss the traditional revival movement, Bunk Johnson, etc. but if so, it was likely Burns who wasn't interested in putting that in his series, rather than Marsalis.

Arthur Gaer
[log in to unmask]


On Apr 4, 2013, at 12:38 PM, Cary Ginell wrote:

>  I might also add that the early world music efforts of Herbie Mann and Stan Getz and the bossa nova movement are also excluded from these so-called representative anthologies, more detritus from the ill effects of Ken Burns' "Jazz," which ignored all of this, probably because the trad jazz, world music, and boss nova movements were all spearheaded by white performers. You'd think Wynton Marsalis, a traditionalist himself and the Svengali behind Burns' myopic rewriting of jazz history, would have embraced the coming of Lu Watters, the rediscovery of Bunk Johnson, and the British trad movement of the 1950s, but I have not seen acknowledgement of this period at all from him. 
> 
> Cary Ginell
> 
> 

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