Louis Armstrong Back in the Day

Louis Armstrong Back in the Day
With His Signature White Handkerchief and Smile

The significance of the blues aesthetic for those who are not professionally conversant in musical notation or the academic discipline of music or jazz history.

Sunday, May 17

Blues People Ph.D. Class

This was a wonderful class in the end with inspiration to spare although we ended getting more and more inclined to the musical rather than the literary.  I just want to thank Tim, Patrick, Fabienne, Adam, Karen, Chris, Tsedale, Jason, Jeremy and Rachel for a wonderful semester.  

Chris did a blog on Bert Williams included here and Tim did one on Nina Simone, which follows.  

Adam did something, which I would like to post on this blog, which is so stunningly wonderful that I have to think more how to describe it.  It includes a technical discussion of the blues along with illustrations on cd: Fred McDowell, Dizzy Gillespie, Freddie Hubbard, Clark Terry, Oscar Peterson, Charlies Mingus, Abbey Lincoln and Oscar Brown Jr., Mary Lou Williams and so on and on with reference to Leroi Jones/Amiri Baraka's Blues People and other writings on Jazz.   

Patrick has promised me something soon on Sister Rosetta Charke. 

Karen has promised work on Paul Robeson and Tsedale on Photographs of lynching.  Jason did a thrilling presentation on orisha dancing comparatively in Cuba and Brazil, and has promised to compose a blog we can post on the topic.  

Fabienne is unique in this class in having chosen to submit as her final work a personal scrapbook, which actually is only completed by the stories that Fabienne has to tell about her life and her journey.  Adam says I said in class that I said I wanted to have an individual relationship with each of the students.  As such, he wrote his paper in the form of a letter to me.  I am deeply moved.  And thanks.

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