Top critical review
DVD needs better balance between music performance and oral interviews
on January 3, 2013
When evaluating jazz music performance I prefer the music do the talking and minimize the words. If the performers featuring on this DVD were left to play longer this is a five star, but they were constantly interrupted by a narrator or the artist himself trying to define present Jazz in their own abstract or personal terms. Not an easy task, particularly when you ignore or bypass the old icons. Of course not everyone ignored the roots of jazz. Maybe all this DVD needed is more balance between live performance and interview.
The best commentary on the DVD is from Paul De Barros; he is absolutely right when he states Jazz was once connected to society, to civil rights movements (1950-60). John Coltrane, Sonny Rollins, Charlie Parker, and other greats performers had something to say to society: "people we exist, we are black and this is our music, it is unique and good". At present some contemporary jazz groups do not seem to show any connection to society except for money. Of course society is changing and we live in a "brave new world" and no need to look back; all improvisation must be accepted, etc. That's a way of thinking, but unfortunately some "modern jazz" performers (not true musicians) think they can mix or add noise improvisation to jazz and call it "music",...and then expect we buy that kind of music.