I’m enjoying the accumulating comments and blog dialogue at A Blog Supreme, to which I’ve already contributed. It’s especially interesting to see which records show up on multiple lists, and there are some consistent choices so far; The Bad Plus (a variety of records), Vijay Iyer’s “in what language?” and Darcy James Argue’s Secret Society. There’s nothing to dispute, it’s a great sample of records all around.
One thing I do disagree with is Patrick’s contention that jazz, especially modern jazz, just needs more exposure and it will be more popular. Art Blakey made the case best when he said that jazz is an intelligent person’s music. You don’t need a music education, but jazz is for people who take pleasure in thinking, as well as grooving, and jazz is for people who listen actively, who reach out to the music in attention and anticipation. That is not the mass of Americans, and it never will be.