issue’s article by Clare Hansson (Jazz
— a Womanly Thing?) has prompted me this time to explore Internet
coverage of jazz. At the outset I should remind you that the topic has
already been covered very fully in George Howell’s column Jazz on the
Internet, a regular feature in Eric Myers’ Australian publication
Jazzchord, News & Information from the National Jazz Co-ordinator
(ISSN 1039 7795).
best to avoid duplicating the places mentioned in that
column, I will nevertheless start with Howell’s own site,
Oz-Jazz Worldwide, “a free information service
dedicated to bringing Australian jazz to the Net”. Ongoing
sections include Musician Profiles, Festivals (local),
On-air (radio) and Bookshelf.
useful site, but maybe one not kept as current as one would like. It also
has links to other sites (e.g. Sydney’s jazz venue The Basement).
mention is due for the Where Do You Get It section. Among other listings
this includes a link to that Sydney Mecca for jazz CD explorers —
— where the shop’s current catalogue is available for your perusal.
itself is represented, and the most recent issue is reproduced in full.
Subscription details are provided.
way to start surfing the Net for jazz is to type the word “jazz” into the
search engine Yahoo. Not only do you get about 80 sites already linked for
you, you also are presented with a series of subcategories like Big Band,
Bossa Nova, Dixieland, Magazines, MIDI Files, Radio Programs, Ragtime,
Yahoo’s links and groupings your exploration possibilities open out into a
whole variety of styles and geographical locations.
how I stumbled on to a strong site called American Jazz Symposium.
Sadly it also is out of date* in places (e.g. its record reviews section),
but overall I have found it pretty useful, especially its Internet links
section, AJS Presents Jazz on the Web. For example, the Jazz Bands and
Artists section, though selective, gives a good coverage of such legends
subsections for trumpet players, trombonists and guitarists. As well, many
minor instrumentalists have entries.
with the best name is, of course, that run by D.C. DowDell he calls
Passion for Jazz. I wholeheartedly recommend it to all Bikwilians.
With commentary, history and education as its aims, this enthusiastic site
is open-minded about all styles, from Dixieland to Acid Jazz, and a
feeling for its spirit can had by reading this:
is not the result of choosing a tune, but an ideal that is created in the
mind, inspired by one’s passion and willed next in playing music! Jazz
music is not found on websites or in books or even written down in music
script; it is in the act of creating the form itself that we find Jazz.
Etymology, Music Instruction, Basic Musicianship, Jazz MIDI Files — these
are just some of its subsections.
equally convincing site is
NPR Jazz Profiles. This is based on the
weekly (U.S.) National Public Radio’s series of the same name whose
objective is to “document the careers of living jazz masters, through
their own voices”. In other words, the radio show is a series of
interviews with the musician(s) concerned, and the Web site reflects this
admirably. Apart from a text outline of the career, we are given a
selection of “live” audio extracts for your Internet browser to play
through your computer speakers. Topics so far covered, or in the planning
stage, include these — plus loads more:
a Jazz City
at the Public Broadcasting Service, I must mention the
Ken Burns Jazz
phenomenon. Jazz is a ten-part TV series being screened in 2001 on
PBS channels. It promises to be as provocative as Burns’ Civil War
and Frank Lloyd Wright. (I hope we see it in Oz soon.) Very full
details are available at the PBS site.
effective site based on a radio station is
WNUR-FM Jazz Web *. This
is maintained by volunteers at Northwestern University, Chicago, and
comprises the following areas of interest:
(radio, TV, press)
Education and Musicianship
Labels on the Net
Jazz Resources on the Net.
last named section, Other Jazz Resources on the Net, for instance. Among a
selection of over 30 links is one to
What Is Jazz? — a site well worth a
visit. This too is digitised audio you can listen to through your
computer. It consists of a series of four enlightening lectures on the
history and nature of jazz presented by pianist and educator Billy Taylor.
Another of those 30+ links I appreciated was that of the
Music Society, dedicated to the preservation of 78s.
of jazz education, I recommend you pop into
Outside Shore Music, a
site that is particularly useful for the full text of a primer on jazz
has been read and appreciated by tens of thousands of musicians around the
world, and is used as course material in improvisation classes by several
major universities. It covers the basics of jazz improvisation and
accompaniment, as well as more advanced theoretical topics, yet it can
also be used by non-musicians who wish to gain a deeper understanding of
author, Marc Sabatella, also sells lessons by email.
if these sites fail to point you towards information on your favourite
jazz musician, style or instrument, just type the name or phrase into your
search engine, and you’re off and running.
Since this article was first published in 2001,
Jazz Symposium seems to have vanished from the Internet,
(b) WNUR-FM Jazz Web has moved to