Tuesday, January 26, 2016


Cross-Blogging With the Dadster...

If you haven't been keeping up with my Dad's blog, you have been missing out on some great photos and descriptions of the jazz scene back in Detroit. I love the photo above, for example, and his plan for the coming year:

What our children think is important… and why this matters.

I grew up before television was our primary information center. Before dinner our family huddled around the radio for the news and after dinner we were entertained by a record going round and round on the Victrola. All kinds of music surrounded us with all its imagery. Those were magical moments. Sometimes we accompanied our parents to a concert or an opera but never to a jazz joint. Jazz and popular music were only on the radio and records. It did get into our heads and we learned to move and sway when nobody was watching. I did catch my dad once practicing his moves. It has  remained part of the rhythm of my life. Thankfully it has also leaked into my children’s lives.

Life isn’t as simple for kids today.

There is plenty of music all around us but often it is in the background while our brain is focused on a task. Getting the time to get lost in some music just isn’t always available. Luckily in Detroit there are earnest efforts to bring our master artists into the community to share their gifts. Providing  an intimate experience with these teachers will assure that many young lives will be richer. I have witnessed the skill of our jazz educators and seen  kids abandon their cell phones while being introduced to something new. This year I am planning to spend time documenting the programs and the individuals whose lives will be enriched. I have always been impressed with the ability jazz musicians have to listen to the children. They seem to know how much that matters. Maybe it is that listening to others is the key to jazz.

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