Some years ago I read an article about jazz that included an interview with a jazz aficionado in his 60s. The guy was devoted to getting out to hear live jazz, and he told the interviewer that he did it because “jazz never lets you down.”
I have the same feeling, JazzBabies, when I hear the great stuff and – well, really, even some of the not so great stuff played by up-and-comers or just amateurs who love the music.
For this post, though, I’m adding my own thought, and that thought is that “jazz will keep you young.”
In my jazz novel, Listen, I wrote about a girl singer and noted that musicians use the “girl singer” description “as long as she can get her walker up to the stage.” Think about Ella, Anita O’Day, Jeannie Cheatham and so many other “girl singers” who were still hitting the notes in their 70s, 80s or 90s.
Instrumentalists climbing the stairway of time often find that they do, in fact, get better as they get older. Same with visual artists who attribute the gain to being willing to take more risks. And creativity is all about risk taking.
So tonight, I bring you three cool cats – Bucky Pizzarelli, John Pisano and Mundell Lowe – who have marched right into their 80s and 90s. They were taped at the local jazz station in Seattle a couple of years ago while in town to appear at Dimitrou’s Jazz Alley as part of the Great Guitars series.
Like I said, jazz will keep you young. And possibly forever in blue jeans.