Hersh Gupta ’19, the president of the Yale Undergraduate Jazz Collective, stated, “Jazz is a spontaneous form of communication like a language.” Its phrasing, concord and rhythm are just like the grammar, syntax and vocabulary of a language. Again, jazz advanced and made itself new, holding on to its roots by way of the advent of bebop. In the Nineteen Forties, Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie and Thelonious Monk rejected the mainstream recognition and industrial mediocrity of swing. They performed an esoteric music characterised by blazing tempos, advanced harmonics, small groups and solo improvisation.
Detractors recommend that his ornately orchestrated music was jazz in name solely, lacking the genre’s improvisational and emotional depth, and co-opted the innovations of black musicians. Defenders observe that Whiteman’s fondness for jazz was real. He worked with black musicians as much as was feasible during an era of racial segregation. His bands included many of the … Read More