Jazz is Dead. Long Live Jazz.
by Mark Shilansky
In recent memory, every few months, in a major newspaper or magazine or website, there is an article about the Death of Jazz. Ben Schwartz’s review of Ted Gioia’s The Jazz Standards: A Guide to the Repertoire, for the Atlantic is titled “The End of Jazz: How America’s most vibrant music became a relic.”i Michel Martin’s NPR interview with drummer/radio host Jae Sinnett bears the headline, “Jazz Musician says Genre is Dying.” (It is important to note that the NPR interview is from 2008, and the Schwartz review is from 2012, so the 2008 premonition did not come true, at least in the four years between the stories.) Even popular culture references far removed from music journalism score easy points with insults about the idiom, like this one from “Last Week Tonight,” John Oliver’s comedic news commentary show on HBO: “Congress is like jazz. It’s really about the bills it’s not passing. It’s also like jazz in that most people hate it and anyone who says they don’t are lying,” ii or the probably improvised non-sequitur in a final episode of NBC’s “The Office.” (Dwight is consoling Angela, whose husband has been revealed to be secretly [actually not-so-secretly] gay. Angela: “How could I have been so stupid?” Dwight: “You’re not stupid. Jazz is stupid.” Angela: “[crying] Jazz IS stupid! Why don’t they just play the right notes?”)iii As a jazz pianist still trying to play this “stupid” music, and trying to teach its intricacies to my students, I have been tempted to suspect a conspiracy to suppress this music, to use it as a representative of all that is antiquated, illogical, needlessly complex, and old-fashioned (which is especially ironic because of the “hip” status jazz has enjoyed through much of its existence). Though I doubt the existence of such a secret plot, I am inspired to investigate and catalog the various sides in the debate “Is Jazz Dead?” It would seem that proving that the answer to this question is “No” would be important to my livelihood, but that is too large a task for this paper, and probably impossible. Exploring the arguments, however, can be important in understanding the conflict, and in helping move toward solutions for the preservation of the genre, if in fact it is dying. The points raised in these warnings about the music’s death tend to fall into two camps: Aesthetic Success and Commerce. Jazz is Dead if its quality has diminished, or Jazz is Dead if it does not make enough money.
These arguments, though sometimes eloquently made, ultimately reflect the circumstances and biases of those advancing them, which mitigate their accuracy. The arguments are colored by those making them, and we can unpack them by observing what is at stake for them. Also, we will see that pronouncements are the observations of a moment in a pendulum swing. At a particular time, one may observe a trend in one direction that inspires movement in another, avoiding the foretold outcome.
THAT’S NOT JAZZ! I AM JAZZ!
Generally, in the history of music when there is an innovation or departure from established norms, there is a critic or musician who criticizes this development as a death knell. Louis Armstrong denounced bebop on numerous occasions, as in the interview with Metronome magazine when he alleged “[bop] doesn’t come from the heart the way real music should... They never learned right. It’s all just flash,” and declared in a DownBeat magazine profile with the contentious title “Bop Will Kill Business Unless It Kills Itself First,” that he preferred the music of trumpeters of his generation to “that out-of-the-world music... you get all them weird chords which don’t mean nothing, and first people get curious about it just because it’s new, but soon they get tired of it because it’s really no good and you got no melody to remember and no beat to dance to.”iv Bebop progenitor Dizzy Gillespie remarked of free-jazz pioneer Ornette Coleman, “I don’t know what he’s playing, but it’s not jazz,” and Miles Davis said of Ornette, “Hell I just listen to what he writes and what he plays. If you’re talking psychologically, the man is all screwed up inside!”v Contrasting with his public criticism, Davis would go on to embrace the chordless improvisation strategies of Coleman in his late ’60s quintet with Wayne Shorter and Tony Williams and invite criticism of his work in the 1970s and beyond for its use of funk and rock grooves. In fact, publicly undermining another artist’s work might be seen as a rite of passage by which a musician establishes one’s career, or at least stirs up controversy which brings attention to it. Wynton Marsalis rather famously took swings at Miles Davis in the press, accusing him of selling out, no longer playing jazz (or playing well for that matter), going so far as to attempt to commandeer the stage, though uninvited, and sit in with Davis’s band in Vancouver in 1986.vi In this case, the warning about the death of jazz comes not from a veteran artist, but from a younger one playing in a more conservative style.
There will be much more about Mr. Marsalis later, as his name is often spoken in these debates, but these examples of artists tearing each other down reveal a fundamental reason for their critiques, and the doom and gloom about the genre that accompanies them. These artists play in a style which is dissimilar to the one they are criticizing, which also at the time of their criticism is gaining in popularity. If the overall genre changes to reflect the new style, the critical musician’s art may no longer be considered relevant, and therefore no longer patronized, leaving this musician either A) out of a job or B) changing their style to include the new elements. Musicians may feel that their reputation depends on their contributions being essential, and where their influence is threatened, so is their very existence, even their legacy.
SO, WHAT DO YOU WANNA PLAY, MAN?
Ben Schwartz makes the following assertion in his review of The Jazz Standards: “...despite Gioia’s ardency, there is no reason to believe that jazz can be a living, evolving art form decades after its major source—and the source that linked it to the main currents of popular culture and sentiment—has dried up.” The statement holds some water, as the melodic and harmonic content of the songs Gioia calls “The Great American Songbook” includes active melodies with wide leaps and stressed dissonances, and harmonies that contain most of the chords in a key, and which move through a variety of keys. As Peter Townsend points out in Pearl Harbor Jazz, “In the popular song of the late 1930s and early 1940s, every possible chromatic addition to the diatonic scale had been used: the lowered ninth, the raised fourth, and the raised fifth having been used by writers such as Harry Warren and Hoagy Carmichael... By 1942 any professional musician who played enough selections from the current repertoire would come across these chromatic alterations.”vii This harmonic sophistication was in the popular music of the day and had been heard by the average casual music fan, not just music scholars. The complexity of popular music mirrored that of jazz, as they had influenced one another. To Schwartz’s point, rock music and most of the popular music that followed has contained much less harmonic and melodic complexity, making these songs less natural for jazz interpretation and improvisation. If the repertoire has dried up or become less interesting, so perhaps Jazz music has as well. Foreshadowing a point later in this paper: Since the average person in the first half of the 20th Century was familiar with the popular songs of that era, it would have been easier for him to understand their jazz interpretations, and they were more likely to listen to (and purchase the commodity of) the music. More recent artists have found some popular songs to interpret in a jazz context (Miles Davis with Cyndi Lauper’s “Time after Time” and Michael Jackson’s “Human Nature,” Vijay Iyer also with “Human Nature,” Joshua Redman with Eric Clapton’s “Tears in Heaven”), with mixed results, but the harmonic and melodic content in much popular music is rarely of the same richness of a Duke Ellington or Gershwin piece.
The above Louis Armstrong quote (“no melody and no beat to dance to”) sums up another frequent rationale for pronouncing the death of jazz. At some point, most notably in the bebop idiom, where instrumental virtuosity and expression of the soloist prevailed, jazz is said by these critics to have divorced itself from its primary purpose: as a background for dancing (and how could one dance to bebop, as the tempo was often so fast!?). Though Townsend describes how this schism between bebop and the jazz that preceded it was exaggerated by the press and was not necessarily thought of as “revolutionary” or “progressive” by the musicians themselves,viii (especially given its harmonic and melodic similarities with popular music) jazz “swung” back and forth between being primarily a groove-based music and an interactive “mainly-for-listening” music. Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers bands and the groups of Horace Silver (the primary writer in Blakey’s first Jazz Messengers) featured jazz with simpler, catchy melodies and grooves that were reminiscent of the rhythm and blues and rock of the ’50s and ’60s. Miles Davis embraced modalism on his Milestones and Kind of Blue albums, striving for melodic eloquence in limiting harmonies and limiting improvisers to fewer melodic choices. These trends existed alongside the free-jazz explorations of the aforementioned Ornette Coleman and Cecil Taylor (who owed much of his dissonant content to European 20th Century classical music). All these threads became intertwined in the fusion music of the ’70s, which often featured grooves inspired by artists like James Brown, Sly and the Family Stone, and Jimi Hendrix, so again embracing dance music, while taking a cue from bands like the Grateful Dead and Santana and featuring extended, adventurous improvisations. We can observe a pattern here similar to the movement from the European Classical period to the Romantic period: from dance-based pieces with mass appeal, the music performing a prescribed role in society, to the rise of the auteur, the composer, the voice of the artist, combined with the idea of individual emancipation from the constraints of society. Jazz moved through this process from the Swing into the Bebop era, back into more compact forms with hard bop and modalism, then into more freedom, and then freedom and groove combined, and all in the span of about 50 years, while it took European classical music 200-250 years to go through the same process.
JAZZ AND THE ACADEMY
The fact that Jazz has accumulated a history of over one hundred years, coupled with its commercial decline, has led to its home in the Academy. David Hajdu quotes saxophonist James Moody, “You need a good education to play jazz. The professor is ‘the road.’”ix As jazz has taken a commercial backseat to other genres of music, there are fewer gigs. Musicians could go on the road for weeks at a time, playing multiple nights at the same venue in major cities, and could learn about how to play music and about the business of being a musician through experience, often as an apprentice with older, more experienced musicians. Now, to have access to master musicians in this way, and to have the time to develop one’s craft, musicians wishing to learn about jazz increasingly need to do it in school. There are numerous programs where one can do this, from strong university music programs to conservatories. The decrease in performing opportunities has necessitated that most professional jazz musicians teach at these institutions as well, so it is a happy coincidence, and in fact as it gets harder and harder to make a living solely as a performer, and as these performers advance in age, more and more established jazz musicians find their home in the Academy. Princeton University just hired alto saxophonist and Indian/jazz fusion artist Rudresh Mahanthappa, Harvard University boasts both Vijay Iyer and Esperanza Spalding on faculty, and Berklee and New England Conservatory employ jazz luminaries too numerous to name, including Joe Lovano, Donny McCaslin, Danilo Perez, some of the busiest performers in the idiom, with “real” recording contracts with major labels. The Academy is the place where a student will enjoy the greatest access to these artists, more than “the street” or “the road,” and therefore a great opportunity to learn the practice and history of this music. Institutionalization creates more musicians than the marketplace can sustain, perhaps, if one thinks of Higher Ed as some kind of trade school where students learn a profession and go out and do it. Thought of in the Liberal Arts tradition, where music is part of a curriculum that encourages one to be a well-rounded, thinking, empathetic human being, the Academy does an important service in teaching jazz, and as a fringe benefit to the financial well-being of its artists, hopefully creates educated listeners who can appreciate it (and patronize the commodity). However, though schools and historical institutions are important in the preservation and dissemination of the history of jazz, this relationship can be problematic. In her article on the canonization of jazz by Jazz at Lincoln Center, of which Wynton Marsalis is Artistic Director and principal performer/bandleader, Kimberly Hannon Teal discusses the distortion of the legacy of pianist/composer Mary Lou Williams. On one hand, JALC patrons who might have had no exposure to the relatively obscure artist are made aware of who she is, biographical details, and are treated to performances of her music. On the other hand, many of the pieces on the particular concert Ms. Teal describes are arranged by JALC band members and contain significant written material not by Ms. Williams. Ms. Williams’s more traditional blues-based, simpler compositions are favored over her oratorio and free-jazz experiments, presenting only some aspects of her eclectic body of work. Piano improvisations by Ms. Williams are performed verbatim from notated music, by other artists, transforming these living artists, who normally work in an improvised idiom, into repertory artists, which implies two things: 1) The work of Ms. Williams is more important than anything the living artists could do, and 2) You, the audience member, have missed out on the really amazing thing, the performance of Ms. Williams, but here, settle for this recreation. Teal also explores the recasting of Ms. Williams as a feminist icon, a position she did not relish or accept while living, as interviews reveal.x When such canonization distorts aspects of the memorialized artist’s work and diminishes its excitement, it makes the case against the memorialization of jazz in this way. Currently, if one would type “jazz.org” in one’s browser window, the Jazz at Lincoln Center website would load. If a listener curious to learn about jazz were to do that, that listener would land on the JALC page. JALC registered that web address for that purpose. JALC = Jazz. Again, I don’t think jazz is dead merely because we can learn about it in mostly clean classrooms and not hungover in the back of malfunctioning vans, but this does give some weight to the argument for “the road” over the ivory tower. The fact that a music heavily containing “folk” elements is not as commonly disseminated and learned among the general populace, and more in an educational setting, could signal its aesthetic or commercial death to some.
JAZZ ISN’T DEAD? THEN SHOW ME THE MONEY!
Articles like David La Rosa’s on a website called “Jazzline News,” regurgitate data from polling sources like Nielsen and Billboard Magazine with statistics such as the sobering news that jazz plus classical music encompass only 1.4% of the music consumed in America.xi This statistic is much, much lower than the percentage of other music that is a product of the African Diaspora, such as R&B and hip hop. Why does it seem, then, that the African American community does not enjoy jazz as much as other music from African American culture? The answer may lie in jazz’s dissemination through the school and higher education system. In an interview with pianist/journalist/- NEC jazz faculty member Ethan Iverson, African American saxophonist Jaleel Shaw relates his experience with jazz in school. “I never learned about ‘jazz’ or anything that had to do with my culture in grade school. Luckily, I had a mother that was into this music and exposed me to it at a young age... I was a Music Ed major at Berklee. When I went to do my student teaching I noticed the urban music schools had no music classes. Meanwhile, the suburban schools were learning all about Ellington, Monk, Armstrong. Almost all of the suburban schools I visited didn’t have many if any black students. The urban schools were all black.”xii African American youth are learning about jazz from middle-aged white guys like the author of this paper but being told that it is “their” music and that they should be digging it, but they have little experience with it to prove that assertion. Certainly, young people become fans of music which aren’t taught in their schools, as was the case with jazz and rock throughout the 20th century, but learning about it in primary and secondary schools would certainly contribute to its consumption, and possibly enable the students to see their heritage as an essential part of creating an American art form.
Elsewhere in the interview, Shaw states, “...we have to remember there was a time when blacks couldn’t use the same entrance to clubs as whites. If a club told me I had to use a separate entrance, I still wouldn’t want to go to that club once things changed.” xiii I’m not sure how that observation squares chronologically with the perceived decline of jazz, but it does remind one that jazz was for a time an expression of African American political identity. Certain branches of the avant-garde, such as the AACM in Chicago, and the mid-’60s music of artists like Max Roach, were tied in with the civil rights movement. Ingrid Monson catalogs how Sonny Rollins, Max Roach and Abbey Lincoln, and Miles Davis used their power as public figures to raise money through benefit concerts, programmatically use their works to address the movement, even though they often found themselves at odds with one another (Max Roach actually leading a sit in/protest at a Miles Davis benefit concert!).xiv
HOW DO YOU PLAY THAT CRAZY PEOPLE MUSIC?
I will take one further opportunity to demonize Wynton Marsalis. The apprentice system of learning on the job espoused by James Moody, above, was ruined by Mr. Marsalis, or by Columbia records and the institutions that promoted the “Young Lion” movement of which Marsalis was a part. The 1980s saw younger and younger artists, plucked from music schools and even earlier, signed to record deals, and promoted with the full advertising budgets of record labels. Prior to this, a young musician would join a band and learn to play under the “tutelage” of a master musician, and at a certain point would strike out on his own (sadly, mostly “his” own, as gender equality was virtually non-existent for much of jazz history) and lead his own band, mentoring young musicians and continuing the cycle. Miles Davis mentored John Coltrane, Coltrane mentored Elvin Jones, Elvin (and Miles) mentored Dave Liebman, and so on. The “Young Lions,” musicians with comparatively little artistic experience, were now hiring older musicians as sidemen, without “the lions” having developed their own artistic voice or sometimes essential skills. To be fair, the musicians most likely did not choose this moniker for themselves; rather, the record companies (most notably Columbia) used it to commodify the artists’ music, which was also used in TV and radio ads to sell the suits and watches the musicians wore, and the luxury automobiles which contained high-end stereo systems from which jazz music emanated. Though many of these musicians were talented and became valid artists in their own right (bassist Christian McBride comes to mind as someone who sprang from Zeus’s head fully formed and kept developing even more), most took several albums to become mature musicians, and a generation of mentorship was lost or at least turned on its head or postponed. Several musicians (pianists Mulgrew Miller, James Williams, and Hal Galper come to mind) missed their “turn” at being a band leader, after apprenticing with artists like Woody Shaw, Art Blakey, and Cannonball Adderly. Though this may not have “killed” the music, it
certainly may be one of the thousand cuts that has fueled claims of its death, in that one of the major avenues of jazz transmission and pedagogy was now broken, or at least forced into a detour back in on itself.
The commodification of jazz now often needs the boost of a story or conceit to bring listeners in, aside from the music itself. The late Mulgrew Miller (felled by a stroke at age 58, while the Artistic Director of Jazz Studies at William Paterson University) spoke of “...interview music. You do something that’s obviously different, and you get the interviews and a certain amount of attention. I maintain that jazz is part progressive art and part folk art, and I’ve observed it to be heavily critiqued by people who attribute progressivity to music that lacks a folk element. When Charlie Parker developed his great conception, the folk element was the same as Lester Young and the blues shouters before him. Even when Ornette Coleman and Coltrane played their conceptions, the folk element was intact. But now, people almost get applauded if they don’t include that in their expression. If I reflected a heavy involvement in Schoenberg or some other ultra-modern composers, then I would be viewed differently than I am. Guys who do what I am doing are viewed as passé.”xv Miller expresses the frustration of an artist continuing the tradition of the music the way he learned it, from the masters with whom he played, while being noticed less than artists with eclectic or novel approaches. Artists like John Scofield and Dave Douglas use a different band on almost every CD project and tour the festival and club circuit each year with a different cast of characters, partially because they are prodigious artists, but also to give audiences (and the promoters who book the festivals) variety and selling points. Douglas’s bands are so plentiful (he may have formed two or three more bands since I began this paper) and eclectic, I sometimes think he hits the internet to check on the current musical fad (“is it Americana? Balkan music? Grunge with DJs and live-explosives?) calls up promoters and critics and tells them about his new project, gets the bookings, then calls the musicians and books them, and then gets around to researching and writing the music.xvi Though the attachment of jazz to a novel concept can help sell it, the fact that it happens so much weakens the idea of jazz as a living, breathing music because it implies that Jazz needs this extra “interview”-ready element to sell it. Promoters reluctant to book and writers reluctant to document ordinary jazz without the novelty hook spread this implication, that “regular jazz” isn’t enough, isn’t worthy of consideration.
Though I am still not sure why so many are eager to pronounce Jazz dead (time of death: the moment I hit send for this blog post), I hope that by examining some of these arguments that steps can be taken so that the patient is never taken off life support until such time that it is able to leave the hospital and enjoy itself again. Grants from the government or foundations can help support musicians by funding concert series and educational programs, where the marketplace has failed. Jazz’s increasing residence in institutions of higher learning can keep it alive and developing until such time that it is appreciated by a wider audience again. “The Academy” is often a laboratory where artists develop their work when it does not have wider acceptance.
NEC professor Anthony Coleman just debuted his “Streams” suite of new original music on May 3rd, featuring several ensembles of NEC students and faculty. They rehearsed for hours, on a weekly basis, as Coleman added to and revised the piece. The NEC community served as Coleman’s repertory ensemble! How much would it cost, and where else would one have such unfettered access to so many high-level musicians to workshop one’s music (many of whom are paying for the privilege to do so, in return for a grade and degree)?
Perhaps by attending to each one of these arguments, musicians, historians, and fans can conspire to keep Jazz alive. First, comedians of NBC and elsewhere in popular culture, stop the easy jokes and low-hanging-fruit snarky attacks on an art form that I know you enjoy. Many of these folks, from the writers of “The Office” and “Saturday Night Live” to popular stand-up comedians are huge jazz fans (see Marc Maron’s “WTF” podcast interviews with Robin Williams, Bill Hader, and Jason Manzoukas xvii) and look to the art form as a source of inspiration. Their snarky comments contribute to the overall disrespect for the music. Secondly, before denigrating a new development in jazz, musicians could stop for a moment to see themselves in the continuum of “new thing” criticism, and the jazz culture as a whole could avoid being sucked in by these polemical disputes, instead seeing them as an ephemeral part of the history of music. It can be exciting to read and listen to artists take potshots at one another, but unless it helps us understand the music better, it is a mere distraction. Also, arts presenters and recording companies could do more to encourage younger and older musicians to play together, the elders passing on the jazz language of the past while becoming aware of newer developments by the young ‘uns.
Education can play a part in restoring melodic and harmonic complexity to popular music, so that it is a more effective vehicle for jazz improvisation. But educators must take care to present jazz history as completely and accurately as possible, to try and eliminate bias and cherry-picking of details to support select narratives. Most importantly, to this musician and fan, we need more live concerts, more places for people to experience the music up close. Curated Spotify playlists and placement in Hollywood movies can be helpful, but, to quote John Philip Sousa, “It is the living, breathing example alone that is valuable to the student and can set into motion his creative and performing abilities.” xviii To create young Mozarts and Beethovens (Ellingtons and Shorters?) we need them to hear the real thing live to hear musicians making decisions in the moment, often based on their interactions with audience members, to see their facial expressions and body language as they play. This spirit of creativity and human interaction is at the heart of jazz, and to experience it is to know that Jazz can never die.
Agovino, Michael J. "Almost Famous, Almost Broke: How Does a Jazz Musician Make It in New York Now?" Village Voice. June 21, 2016. Accessed April 09, 2018. .
Alkyer, Frank, ed. DownBeat - The Great Jazz Interiviews - a 75th Anniversary Anthology. Milwaukee, WI: Hal Leonard, 2009.
Brown, Lee B. "Jazz: America's Classical Music?" - Scholars on the role Jazz plays in American music.
Clark, Philip. "Wynton Marsalis: Trumpeting Controversial Ideas of Classicism." The Guardian, November 6, 2015. Accessed April 8, 2018.
Daniels, Greg, writer. "Finale." The Office. NBC. May 16, 2013. February 5, 2018. Accessed April 8, 2018.
Douglas, Dave. "Greenleaf Music by Dave Douglas." Greenleaf Music - Dave Douglas Jazz Blog and Store. Accessed April 09, 2018.
Ehle, Robert C., and Robert E. Ehle. "JAZZ CLASSICS or CLASSICAL JAZZ: The Story of Third Stream Jazz." - American Music Teacher 22, no. 1 (1972): 22-31.
Bibliography - Philosophy and Literature 26, no. 1 (2002): 157-172. (accessed February 26, 2018). A comparison of popular opinions by leading jazz
Gioia, Ted. The Jazz Standards: A Guide to the Repertoire. New York: Oxford University Press, 2012. An appreciation of the source material for jazz artists, from material written by the musicians themselves, to the “Great American Songbook” of Broadway and Popular tunes used as vehicles for improvisation.
Goldberg, Joe. Review of Jazz, Documentary by Ken Burns, The Threepenny Review. Summer, 2001. /goldberg_su01.html
Hajdu, David. Love for Sale - Pop music in America. New York, NY: St Martins Press, 2017. A history of the commodification of music in America, from piano-rolls to sheet music to the recording industry and how each has affected the music itself.
Hajdu, David. "From Jazz Clubs to Classrooms." The Nation. August 31, 2017. Accessed April 09, 2018.
Iverson, Ethan. "The Drum Thing, Or, A Brief History of Whiplash, Or, "I'm Generalizing Here"." DO THE M@TH. August 24, 2016. Accessed April 09, 2018.
Lu, Alicia. "John Oliver's Absolute Best 'LWT' Quotes." Bustle. March 23, 2018. Accessed April 08, 2018.
Maron, Marc. "Interviews with Robin Williams, Jason Manzoukas, Bill Hader." WTF with Marc Maron - Podcast. Accessed May 06, 2018.
Martin, Michel, "Jazz Musician Says Genre is Dying." NPR. April 10, 2008. Accessed February 26, 2018.
Monson, Ingrid. "The Problem with White Hipness: Race, Gender, and Cultural Conceptions in Jazz - Historical Discourse." Journal of the American Musicological Society 48, no. 3 (1995): 396-422.
Monson, Ingrid. Freedom Sounds: Civil Rights Call Out to Jazz and Africa. Oxford University Press, 2010.
Panken, Ted. "Mulgrew Miller, R.I.P. (1955-2013) - A DownBeat Article and Several Interviews." Today is the Question: Ted Panken on Music, Politics and the Arts. August 13, 2017. Accessed April 09, 2018.
Payton, Nicholas. "On Why Jazz Isn’t Cool Anymore." Nicholas Payton. April 14, 2012. Accessed February 26, 2018.
Roberts, Randall. "Why Was Ornette Coleman So Important?" Los Angeles Times, June 11, 2015. Accessed April 8, 2018.
Rosa, David La. "Jazz Has Become The Least-Popular Genre In The U.S." Jazz Line News. March 09, 2015. Accessed February 26, 2018.
Schwarz, Benjamin. "The End of Jazz." The Atlantic. Nov, 2012. Accessed February 26, 2018.
Sousa, John Philip. “The Menace of Mechanical Music.” Appleton’s Magazine. Vol. 8, 1906. American Music
Teachout, Terry. Pops: A Life of Louis Armstrong. Boston: Mariner Books, 2010. American Music
Townsend, Peter. Pearl harbor Jazz: Changes in Popular Music in the Early 1940s. Jackson: University of Mississippi, 2009. An examination of the years which began significant trends away from dissonance in jazz and popular music.
Stephens, Vincent. "Crooning on the Fault Lines: Theorizing Jazz and Pop Vocal Singing Discourse in the Rock Era, 1955-1978." 26, no. 2 (2008): 156-95.
Teal, Kimberly Hannon. "Posthumously Live: Canon Formation at Jazz at Lincoln Center through the Cas of Mary Lou Williams." 32, no. 4 (2014): 400-22. doi:10.5406/americanmusic.32.4.0400.
Walls, Seth Colter. "Is jazz entering a new golden age?" The Guardian. July 08, 2016. Accessed February 26, 2018.
Woodworth, Griffin. "Prince, Miles, and Maceo: Horns, Masculinity, and the Anxiety of Influence." Music Research Journal
i ii iii iv Teachout, Terry, Pops: A Life of Louis Armstrong, Boston: Mariner Books, 2010, p. 280 v
vi vii Townsend, Peter, Pearl harbor Jazz: Changes in Popular Music in the Early 1940s, Jackson: University of Mississippi, 2009, p. 50.
viii Townsend, p. 140.
ix x xi xii xiii Iverson.
xiv x xvi xvii xviii Black 33, no. 2 (2013): 117-50.