It’s been a long week, JazzBabies, with a lot going on around the country. The thing at the top of my personal list of things to think about has been the blossoming Children’s Crusade coming out of the Florida high school tragedy and the blowback the students have received from various groups and politicians in answer to their stand on gun control.
This is not a site for politics, but it’s damned hard to ignore them in these fraught days. Still, we’re a place for jazz, so after some thought it occurred to me to post Billie Holiday’s anthem to independence, to taking a stand, and in this case, to the blessings on those who do.
While I love Billie’s own version of “God Bless the Child,” I’m choosing tonight to give you this terrific rendition from Blood, Sweat and Tears whose jazz/rock sounds of the late 60s and early 70s gave many of us some hope of better days and times as we continued to struggle with an earlier battle – the Vietnam War. No music, including jazz, exists outside its time and place.
As in other times, we’re caught in a cultural context at the moment where money and power are at the leading edge. And as someone once said, “If money talks, why doesn’t it ever say anything good.” Well, sometimes it does, but at the moment, I’m hard put to hear what that is.
Still the students from the Parkland high school are standing up, speaking out and not knuckling under to the voices of money and power. This song is dedicated to those kids and in memory of the ones whose voices were stilled. Viva, sweet and well-spoken youth!
Blessings, JazzBabies, blessings.