Jul 20, 2012

Well, here we go. The journey of a thousand blog entries begins, I suppose, with a single cliched expression.

Welcome to Kind of Blog: An Occasional KWGS Jazz Journal. Of course, if this journal should actually survive for anything remotely near 1,000 entries, I'll be pleased as punch. Whoa, another cliche. Bear with me.

As the host of All This Jazz here at KWGS-FM --- a weekly, two-hour music program offering "modern jazz, both recent and classic," as I've said on the air ad infinitum --- I am inaugurating, with this here blog, a listening diary, a jazz-focused bulletin board or events calendar, a ongoing almanac of jazz history and culture and achievement, a checklist of recommended recordings and notable performances, and (I hope) much more. (But I did drop the adjective "occasional" at some point, right? Just making sure.)

My reasons for creating this blog are, unsurprisingly, the same reasons I have for bothering with the All This Jazz program in the first place. (I've been doing the show every Saturday night since October of 2006, by the way.) Put simply, I love the music --- I'm forever drawn to it, in all its varied forms and styles --- and likewise I love sharing it with others.

So, again: Welcome.

Two parting thoughts, before I spilt:

1) Since the peak temperature here in Tulsa, Oklahoma, will be --- for today, tomorrow, and the next day --- approximately 106 degrees, I'm now heading off to take my air-conditioned and late-breaking lunch break while thinking about the expression "le jazz hot" (its history and connotations, for the most part, a la Grappelli and Django's Quintette of the Hot Club of France). I'm also thinking about which jazz tunes or styles most agree with, um, insanely hot weather. Bossa nova music immediately comes to mind, as does, more broadly, Latin Jazz --- and maybe the geographical and cultural parallels here are obvious. Example: you could surely pick any ol' track from the landmark Stan Getz/Charlie Byrd album, JAZZ SAMBA, and the steamy climate (apologies for this yet-additional cliche) would seem to be built right into the music. Have you any other examples, dear reader? (Email me at AllThisJazzRadio@aol.com.)

2) A bit later today, I'll start pulling records for tomorrow night's show. In the second hour of said program --- wherein we always present jazz music per a given theme, with a new theme for every show --- I'll be saluting four individuals who've each done, over the respective courses of their lengthy, still-active careers, a tremendous amount to enrich and enliven jazz music. These key contributors are Mose Allison, Lou Donaldson, Lorraine Gordon, and Eddie Palmieri; earlier this week, all four were named by the National Endowment for the Arts as the 2013 NEA Jazz Masters. This "Jazz Master" award is the nation's highest honor in jazz; details of the announcement can be found here.

Congrats and kudos all around!