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The Decade in Jazz: 10 Definitive Moments

Esperanza Spalding upset Justin Bieber at the Grammys, #MeToo shook the scene and Jason Moran made giant leaps. A look back at how the music moved forward.

Credit…Lester Cohen/Getty Images

Giovanni Russonello

At the end of the decade, where does jazz stand?

Is it the proud tradition of America’s “classical music,” rooted in the blues but now happily subsumed into the academy? Is it the domain of no-holds-barred experimentalism, where standard ideas of harmony and rhythm have grown passé? Or is it an ever-evolving form of black music that allows young virtuoso musicians to incorporate pop, hip-hop and electronics into new styles that sound like our information-overloaded, 21st-century lives?

All three are valid answers — and as the past 10 years have shown, it’s the friction between them that keeps jazz’s engine running.

A decade ago, musicians were still working to outrun the ideology of Neo-Classicism. Today, the two other definitions have the edge.

A decade ago, New York was still the undeniable center of the jazz world, where young musicians fresh out of school would inevitably flock to compete for gigs. But the past 10 years have seen the resurgence of local jazz scenes — especially in Chicago and Los Angeles, as well as London — where young musicians can sometimes play a greater role as organizers and outside-the-box collaborators, and can stay connected to the heritage of their hometowns.

And a decade ago, jazz’s gender imbalance still felt implacable. But thanks to an influx of female and nonbinary students at academic institutions, the advocacy of virtuoso musicians like Geri Allen and Terri Lyne Carrington, and agitation by young musicians demanding change, a new paradigm is starting to emerge.

After all, this has always been the way of the music: Planted in tradition, buzzing with activity and contingency, it cannot help but grow. Here are 10 moments that tell the story of jazz’s progress in the 2010s.

When this singing, bass-playing young virtuoso stole the best new artist Grammy from under Justin Bieber’s nose, it incited a Twitter fury among his fans and — more important — established her as the first in a new generation of crossover jazz stars. (Robert Glasper, Kamasi Washington, Thundercat and Makaya McCraven would soon follow.) In the decade that followed, Esperanza Spalding proved adept at making use of her platform: Her albums grew only more ambitious and rewarding and her artistry now encompasses interdisciplinary art, activism and, apparently, writing operas with Wayne Shorter. (Some tantalizing videos from the studio keep landing on Instagram, but the work remains unfinished.)

“Jazz is a label that was forced upon the musicians.” “Jazz separated itself from American popular music. Big mistake. The music never recovered.” “Jazz ain’t cool, it’s cold, like necrophilia.” The Grammy-winning New Orleans trumpeter Nicholas Payton was looking for converts, not friends, when he posted an entry on his personal blog over Thanksgiving weekend 2011 titled “On Why Jazz Isn’t Cool Anymore.”

His droll, 1,100-word critique immediately became the “Jazz and the White Critic” of the new century, arguing that the so-called jazz establishment has cut musicians off from the rest of contemporary society. If jazz’s artists had more control over their industry, he argued, genre divisions would matter a lot less. In a separate post, Mr. Payton introduced a term to replace jazz (and R&B, hip-hop and house music, theoretically): “Black American Music,” abbreviated with the hashtag #BAM. That phrase, like the argument it represents, has not gone out of style yet.

For years in the late 2000s and early 2010s, in half-hypnotic, half-electrifying live shows and lengthy rehearsals that sometimes involved playing a single hip-hop groove for an hour, Robert Glasper’s Experiment band honed a new kind of jazz/hip-hop fusion. It was a flexible science by the time this quartet released its first full-length album, “Black Radio,” full of short, airplay-ready tunes and star guest vocalists. Paying equal debts to 1980s quiet storm, Radiohead’s moody ooze and the slackened rhythmic stamp of J Dilla, the record won a Grammy for best R&B album — and opened up a fresh sense of possibility in jazz.

Rarely does a tribute concert really touch the spirit of its honoree. It helped that Ornette Coleman himself was onstage that drizzly June night at BRIC’s Celebrate Brooklyn Festival, presiding like Buddha, occasionally shedding tears, even though he didn’t play much saxophone. Sonny Rollins, Laurie Anderson, Patti Smith, the Master Musicians of Joujouka and others came onstage to affirm his importance as a founding figure on the avant-garde, some by speaking and others simply by playing. One year later, almost to the day, Mr. Coleman died.

By the time the pianist and MacArthur fellow Vijay Iyer became tenured at Harvard University — a first for a jazz musician — he had already set about changing the place. He encouraged the music department to ditch its Eurocentric core curriculum, and founded a one-of-a-kind, interdisciplinary doctoral program in music. It is evidence that jazz musicians entering the highest rungs of the academy will radically alter it with their presence.

Just two months after Kendrick Lamar released his masterpiece “To Pimp a Butterfly,” a tenor saxophonist who had played a big role on that album put forth an opus of his own. Kamasi Washington’s three-disc “The Epic” — with horns, strings, choir and an outsize jazz combo funneling into a titanic blend of postbop, calypso, funk and gospel — was a runaway success, thanks to the allure of its ambition and the co-signs of Mr. Lamar and Flying Lotus, who released the album on his label. Mr. Washington soon became one of today’s more popular musicians of any kind, as well as an ambassador for Los Angeles’s thriving scene.

Two events on opposite ends of the Eastern Seaboard — jazz’s newest festival and its oldest — each provided a keyhole into the music’s future. In February, the nerdy jazz-funk phenoms in Snarky Puppy held their first GroundUp Festival in Miami Beach, showing that the young, hyper-technical musicians coming out of jazz-education programs could make up a consumer base of its own. In Rhode Island, the 45-year-old bassist Christian McBride became artistic director of the Newport Jazz Festival (taking over from its nonagenarian founder George Wein), and immediately nudged it toward an embrace of the #BAM philosophy: His first festival featured the Roots, Maceo Parker, Esperanza Spalding and Henry Threadgill.

After years of buildup, in 2017 young female and nonbinary musicians forced a major reckoning with jazz’s old ethic of gender exclusivity, which pervades the bandstand, the studio and the classroom. Buoyed by the #MeToo movement, a number of young musicians went public with stories of harassment and assault, posting lengthy personal essays online that landed like a boulder in the center of the road. The entire community had to come together to figure out a way forward, and to open up a broader pathway into jazz. The next year, the #WeHaveVoice collective released a broad Code of Conduct establishing what behavior is unacceptable on the bandstand and off, and Ms. Carrington started the first-of-its-kind Institute of Jazz and Gender Justice at Berklee College of Music.

For over a decade, the Stone served as a ballast for the avant-garde on the Lower East Side. In 2018 it moved across town, voluntarily, into the New School, signaling an ascent that’s both a victory and a loss. It meant a new kind of institutional acceptance for downtown New York experimentalism, but also felt like a goodbye to Manhattan’s last truly outsider space devoted to improvised music.

The broader his artistic identity grows, the more Jason Moran, 44, seems like the elder statesman-to-be that jazz has been waiting for. Aside from the continuing bounties of his trio, the Bandwagon — still the finest small group in jazz in its 20th year — much of his influence comes by way of assembly: This year he and the vocalist Alicia Hall Moran, his wife, barnstormed classical stages across the country with “Two Wings: The Music of Black America in Migration,” a multidisciplinary performance bringing together blues, rock, jazz and Western classical musicians, as well as scholars. A few months later, Mr. Moran’s first museum retrospective show, featuring the fruits of his collaborations with visual artists, arrived at the Whitney Museum of American Art. If jazz is to live in the academy, Mr. Moran wants to ensure that it changes the nature of what that means — making institutions more socially engaged, more interdisciplinary, more improvisational and more awake.

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Director Bryan Singer is accused of raping a 17-year-old boy

A few days after being fired as director of the movie “Bohemian Rhapsody,” filmmaker Bryan Singer was sued on Thursday in Washington state on charges of raping a minor in 2003, according to media reports specialized.

The victim, Cesar Sanchez-Guzman, accused Singer of raping him on a yacht when he was seventeen. According to his testimony, the director forced the young man to have oral sex on him and then penetrated him.

Later, Singer told the young man that he was a well-known Hollywood producer and that he could help him enter the industry with roles as an actor if he did not reveal what happened.

Image result for Director Bryan Singer is accused of raping a 17-year-old boy

“He told Caesar that no one would believe if he reported the incident and that he would hire people who could ruin his reputation,” the suit filed in a Seattle court.

The yacht was owned by Lester Waters, a billionaire investor in the world of technology “who often organized gay homosexual parties in the Seattle area,” according to the text.

It’s not the first time Singer has been accused of anything like this.

Three years ago he was accused by Michael Egan III of sexual abuse when he was a minor in 1999.

Egan III stated that she was “repeatedly raped” in a Los Angeles (California) mansion where “sordid parties” were routinely performed in which guests, related to the Hollywood industry, were naked and had sex with teenagers.

The 20th Century Fox studio fired Bryan Singer last Monday for the post of director of “Bohemian Rhapsody,” a movie about British band Queen.

Image result for Director Bryan Singer is accused of raping a 17-year-old boy

The decision was made because of the filmmaker’s repeated absences on the set of the film.

Earlier, Fox had announced on the 1st of this month that the recording was temporarily suspended because of an “unexpected problem” of Singer.

A representative of the producer stated that his absence was due to a “personal health issue.”

The director, 52, has signed films such as “The Suspects,” “Superman Returns,” and four of the “X-Men” saga.

“Bohemian Rhapsody” is set to hit theaters on Christmas Day 2018.

The Decade in Jazz: 10 Definitive Moments

Esperanza Spalding upset Justin Bieber at the Grammys, #MeToo shook the scene and Jason Moran made giant leaps. A look back at how the music moved forward.

Credit…Lester Cohen/Getty Images

Giovanni Russonello

At the end of the decade, where does jazz stand?

Is it the proud tradition of America’s “classical music,” rooted in the blues but now happily subsumed into the academy? Is it the domain of no-holds-barred experimentalism, where standard ideas of harmony and rhythm have grown passé? Or is it an ever-evolving form of black music that allows young virtuoso musicians to incorporate pop, hip-hop and electronics into new styles that sound like our information-overloaded, 21st-century lives?

All three are valid answers — and as the past 10 years have shown, it’s the friction between them that keeps jazz’s engine running.

A decade ago, musicians were still working to outrun the ideology of Neo-Classicism. Today, the two other definitions have the edge.

A decade ago, New York was still the undeniable center of the jazz world, where young musicians fresh out of school would inevitably flock to compete for gigs. But the past 10 years have seen the resurgence of local jazz scenes — especially in Chicago and Los Angeles, as well as London — where young musicians can sometimes play a greater role as organizers and outside-the-box collaborators, and can stay connected to the heritage of their hometowns.

And a decade ago, jazz’s gender imbalance still felt implacable. But thanks to an influx of female and nonbinary students at academic institutions, the advocacy of virtuoso musicians like Geri Allen and Terri Lyne Carrington, and agitation by young musicians demanding change, a new paradigm is starting to emerge.

After all, this has always been the way of the music: Planted in tradition, buzzing with activity and contingency, it cannot help but grow. Here are 10 moments that tell the story of jazz’s progress in the 2010s.

When this singing, bass-playing young virtuoso stole the best new artist Grammy from under Justin Bieber’s nose, it incited a Twitter fury among his fans and — more important — established her as the first in a new generation of crossover jazz stars. (Robert Glasper, Kamasi Washington, Thundercat and Makaya McCraven would soon follow.) In the decade that followed, Esperanza Spalding proved adept at making use of her platform: Her albums grew only more ambitious and rewarding and her artistry now encompasses interdisciplinary art, activism and, apparently, writing operas with Wayne Shorter. (Some tantalizing videos from the studio keep landing on Instagram, but the work remains unfinished.)

“Jazz is a label that was forced upon the musicians.” “Jazz separated itself from American popular music. Big mistake. The music never recovered.” “Jazz ain’t cool, it’s cold, like necrophilia.” The Grammy-winning New Orleans trumpeter Nicholas Payton was looking for converts, not friends, when he posted an entry on his personal blog over Thanksgiving weekend 2011 titled “On Why Jazz Isn’t Cool Anymore.”

His droll, 1,100-word critique immediately became the “Jazz and the White Critic” of the new century, arguing that the so-called jazz establishment has cut musicians off from the rest of contemporary society. If jazz’s artists had more control over their industry, he argued, genre divisions would matter a lot less. In a separate post, Mr. Payton introduced a term to replace jazz (and R&B, hip-hop and house music, theoretically): “Black American Music,” abbreviated with the hashtag #BAM. That phrase, like the argument it represents, has not gone out of style yet.

For years in the late 2000s and early 2010s, in half-hypnotic, half-electrifying live shows and lengthy rehearsals that sometimes involved playing a single hip-hop groove for an hour, Robert Glasper’s Experiment band honed a new kind of jazz/hip-hop fusion. It was a flexible science by the time this quartet released its first full-length album, “Black Radio,” full of short, airplay-ready tunes and star guest vocalists. Paying equal debts to 1980s quiet storm, Radiohead’s moody ooze and the slackened rhythmic stamp of J Dilla, the record won a Grammy for best R&B album — and opened up a fresh sense of possibility in jazz.

Rarely does a tribute concert really touch the spirit of its honoree. It helped that Ornette Coleman himself was onstage that drizzly June night at BRIC’s Celebrate Brooklyn Festival, presiding like Buddha, occasionally shedding tears, even though he didn’t play much saxophone. Sonny Rollins, Laurie Anderson, Patti Smith, the Master Musicians of Joujouka and others came onstage to affirm his importance as a founding figure on the avant-garde, some by speaking and others simply by playing. One year later, almost to the day, Mr. Coleman died.

By the time the pianist and MacArthur fellow Vijay Iyer became tenured at Harvard University — a first for a jazz musician — he had already set about changing the place. He encouraged the music department to ditch its Eurocentric core curriculum, and founded a one-of-a-kind, interdisciplinary doctoral program in music. It is evidence that jazz musicians entering the highest rungs of the academy will radically alter it with their presence.

Just two months after Kendrick Lamar released his masterpiece “To Pimp a Butterfly,” a tenor saxophonist who had played a big role on that album put forth an opus of his own. Kamasi Washington’s three-disc “The Epic” — with horns, strings, choir and an outsize jazz combo funneling into a titanic blend of postbop, calypso, funk and gospel — was a runaway success, thanks to the allure of its ambition and the co-signs of Mr. Lamar and Flying Lotus, who released the album on his label. Mr. Washington soon became one of today’s more popular musicians of any kind, as well as an ambassador for Los Angeles’s thriving scene.

Two events on opposite ends of the Eastern Seaboard — jazz’s newest festival and its oldest — each provided a keyhole into the music’s future. In February, the nerdy jazz-funk phenoms in Snarky Puppy held their first GroundUp Festival in Miami Beach, showing that the young, hyper-technical musicians coming out of jazz-education programs could make up a consumer base of its own. In Rhode Island, the 45-year-old bassist Christian McBride became artistic director of the Newport Jazz Festival (taking over from its nonagenarian founder George Wein), and immediately nudged it toward an embrace of the #BAM philosophy: His first festival featured the Roots, Maceo Parker, Esperanza Spalding and Henry Threadgill.

After years of buildup, in 2017 young female and nonbinary musicians forced a major reckoning with jazz’s old ethic of gender exclusivity, which pervades the bandstand, the studio and the classroom. Buoyed by the #MeToo movement, a number of young musicians went public with stories of harassment and assault, posting lengthy personal essays online that landed like a boulder in the center of the road. The entire community had to come together to figure out a way forward, and to open up a broader pathway into jazz. The next year, the #WeHaveVoice collective released a broad Code of Conduct establishing what behavior is unacceptable on the bandstand and off, and Ms. Carrington started the first-of-its-kind Institute of Jazz and Gender Justice at Berklee College of Music.

For over a decade, the Stone served as a ballast for the avant-garde on the Lower East Side. In 2018 it moved across town, voluntarily, into the New School, signaling an ascent that’s both a victory and a loss. It meant a new kind of institutional acceptance for downtown New York experimentalism, but also felt like a goodbye to Manhattan’s last truly outsider space devoted to improvised music.

The broader his artistic identity grows, the more Jason Moran, 44, seems like the elder statesman-to-be that jazz has been waiting for. Aside from the continuing bounties of his trio, the Bandwagon — still the finest small group in jazz in its 20th year — much of his influence comes by way of assembly: This year he and the vocalist Alicia Hall Moran, his wife, barnstormed classical stages across the country with “Two Wings: The Music of Black America in Migration,” a multidisciplinary performance bringing together blues, rock, jazz and Western classical musicians, as well as scholars. A few months later, Mr. Moran’s first museum retrospective show, featuring the fruits of his collaborations with visual artists, arrived at the Whitney Museum of American Art. If jazz is to live in the academy, Mr. Moran wants to ensure that it changes the nature of what that means — making institutions more socially engaged, more interdisciplinary, more improvisational and more awake.

Read More

Lady Gaga: Start your tour with a shocking change of image

Lady Gaga has returned to the stage after the break caused by her illness. He has done it in Barcelona, in the first of the two concerts at the Palau Sant Jordi, and he has done it in style. With an intense concert where it has been delivered to an audience, which sold out all the tickets. Mind you, get ready to see a Lady Gaga more changed than ever. A change of image that has impacted its fans.

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A few months ago Lady Gaga left with her mouth open to all her fans when she announced that she was postponing her tour because of her fibromyalgia problems. Well, he has returned and he has done it through the front door. Barcelona, the first city of his return, surrendered to the pop star. On this occasion, he drew attention to the soberness of his wardrobe. No makeup or outlandish dresses, we saw a Lady Gaga soberer than ever.

Naked stage, with a long mobile platform that has been filled with dancers as the singer went to glam-rock in A-Yo and took the landmark poker face out of the hat. She started the show like a cowgirl with a glitter hat on Diamond heart, between nostalgic stanzas of when she was “young and wild” and allusions to that rape: “an asshole ruined and ruined my innocence”, which she told a few months ago. make public their problem.

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Lady Gaga: Support the LGBT community

Lady Gaga spent so much time singing and talking. “How many members of the LGBT community are there? How many are not? It does not matter, we love everyone. ” And we already know that the artist is a defender of rights.

Gaga, the richest young woman in the world, started in Barcelona the European section of her “Joanne World Tour”, with which she presents her latest album, “Joanne”, entitled in homage to a deceased aunt of his. In October, Gaga announced the reprogramming of the European tour, in which the spectators will be able to listen to their usual songs, but also their fifth studio album, ‘Joanne’, disc that debuted recently at number 1 of the Billboard list , standing as the first female artist to achieve it four times consecutively in this decade.

What do you think of his return? Do you think it was up to the expectations?

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