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46,579. It was an age of miracles. It was an age of art. It was an age of excess. And it was an age of satire. We were the most powerful nation. Who could tell us any longer what was fashionable and what was fun? It was a whole race going hedonistic. Deciding on pleasure. The jazz age now raced along under its own power served by great filling stations full of money. (United States of America & 1920s & Jazz & Age) F Scott Fitzgerald, Echoes of the Jazz Age
46,580. Somebody had blundered. And the most expensive orgy in history was over. Now once more the belt is tight. And we summoned the proper expression of horror as we looked back on our wasted youth. Sometimes though there is a ghostly rumble among the drums. Enigmatic whispers in the trombones. That swings me back into the early twenties. When we drank wood alcohol and every day in every way grew better and better. And there was an abortive shortening of the skirts. And people you didn’t want to know said, Yes, we have no bananas. And it all seems rosy and romantic to us who were young men. Because we will never quite so intently about our surroundings any more. (Jazz & United States of America & 1920s) ibid.
46,532. Though the Jazz Age continued it became less and less an affair of youth. The sequel was like a children’s party taken over by the elders. ibid.
9,736. Art is constant tension and release. That is where artists live, between the two, or at times, submerged in either. (Art & Jazz) Dave Liebman
39,244. I have learned as much about writing about my people by listening to blues and jazz and spirituals as I have from reading novels. The understatements in the tenor saxophone of Lester Young, the crystal, haunting, forever searching sounds of John Coltrane, and the softness and violence of Count Basie’s big band - all have fired my imagination as much as anything in literature. (Black People & Jazz) Ernest J Gaines
43,949. A lot of people think jazz musicians are dope addicts. But we’ve proved it ain’t so. (Heroin & Jazz) Milt Jackson
46,359. Jazz as a style eluded definition. (Music & Jazz) Howard Goodall’s Story of Music: The Popular Age, BBC 2013
46,362. In the music of Charlie Parker, Thelonious Monk and Dizzy Gillespie, Bebop became the most influential form of jazz. (Music & Jazz) ibid.
46,416. One Week Only – Beg, Friday Nov. 5th Count Basie And His New Band with Billie Holiday and Jas Rushing: At The 125th Street Apollo: America’s Smartest Colored Shows! (Jazz & Poster) Poster
46,562. Le Hot Club de France Et ‘Jazz Hot’ presentent Django Reignhardt, Stephane Grappelly et laeur Quintette du Hot Club de France. (Jazz & Poster) club poster
46,417. I realized by using the high notes of the chords as a melodic line, and by the right harmonic progression, I could play what I heard inside me. That’s when I was born. Charlie Parker, cited Masters of Jazz
46,418. I’d been getting bored with the stereotyped changes that were being used all the time at the time, and I kept thinking there’s bound to be something else. I could hear it sometimes but I couldn't play it ... I found that by using the higher intervals of a chord as a melody line and backing them with appropriately related changes I could play the thing I’d been hearing. I came alive. Charlie Parker, cited Hear Me Talkin’ to Ya 1955
46,419. Music is your own experience, your own thoughts, your wisdom. If you don’t live it, it won’t come out of your horn. They teach you there’s a boundary line to music. But, man, there’s no boundary line to art. Charlie Parker, cited Bird: The Legend of Charlie Parker 1977
46,420. You’ve got to learn your instrument. Then, you practice, practice, practice. And then, when you finally get up there on the bandstand, forget all that and just wail. (Jazz & Music) Charlie Parker
46,421. They just came out to see the world’s most famous junky. Charlie Parker, to friend
46,422. Why don’t you save me, Diz? Why don’t you save me? (Jazz & Save) Charlie Parker to Dizzy Gillespie, last words before stumbling into the night
46,423. The whole essence of a Gillespie solo was cliff-hanging suspense: the phrases and the angle of the approach were perpetually varied, breakneck runs were followed by pauses, by huge interval leaps, by long, immensely high notes, by slurs and smears and bluesy phrases; he always took listeners by surprise, always shocking them with a new thought. His lightning reflexes and superb ear meant his instrumental execution matched his thoughts in its power and speed. And he was concerned at all times with swing – even taking the most daring liberties with pulse or beat, his phrases never failed to swing. Gillespies’s magnificent sense of time and emotional intensity of his playing came from childhood roots. His parents were Methodists, but as a boy he used to sneak off every Sunday to the uninhibited Sanctified Church. He said later, ‘The Sanctified Church had deep significance for me musically. I first learned the significance of rhythm there and all about how music can transport people spiritually.’ Carr & Fairweather & Priestley, The Rough Guide to Jazz
46,440. It’s taken me all my life to learn what not to play. Dizzy Gillespie
46,441. Dancers didn’t care whether we played a flattened fifth or a ruptured hundred and twenty-ninth. They just stand around the band-stand and gawk. Dizzy Gillespie
46,456. Thelonious Monk is one of the jazz pianists who came along and just found the cracks in the middle of the diatonic scale. Cassandra Wilson, singer
46,424. I don’t know where it’s going. Maybe it’s going to hell. You can’t make anything go anywhere. It just happens. Thelonious Monk, cited Jet Magazine 1960
46,425. Well I enjoy doing it. Thelonious Monk
46,426. I don’t consider myself a musician who has achieved perfection and can’t develop any further. But I compose my pieces with a formula that I created myself. Take a musician like John Coltrane. He is a perfect musician, who can give expression to all the possibilities of his instrument. But he seems to have difficulty expressing original ideas on it. That is why he keeps looking for ideas in exotic places. At least I don’t have that problem, because, like I say, I find my inspiration in myself. (Jazz & Music & Inspiration) Thelonious Monk
46,427. At this time the fashion is to bring something to jazz that I reject. They speak of freedom. But one has no right, under pretext of freeing yourself, to be illogical and incoherent by getting rid of structure and simply piling a lot of notes one on top of the other. There’s no beat anymore. You can’t keep time with your foot. I believe that what is happening to jazz with people like Ornette Coleman, for instance, is bad. There’s a new idea that consists in destroying everything and find what’s shocking and unexpected; whereas jazz must first of all tell a story that anyone can understand. Thelonious Monk
46,428. I say, play your own way. Don’t play what the public want – you play what you want and let the public pick up on what you doing – even if it does take them fifteen, twenty years. Thelonious Monk
46,429. Working with Monk brought me close to a musical architect of the highest order. I felt I learned from him in every way – through the senses, theoretically, technically. I would talk to Monk about musical problems, and he would sit at the piano and show me the answers just by playing them. I could watch him play and find out the things I wanted to know. Also, I could see a lot of things that I didn’t know about at all. John Coltrane, cited Downbeat September 1960
46,430. All a musician can do is get closer to the sources of nature, and so feel that he is in communion with the natural laws. (Jazz & Music) John Coltrane
46,431. I’m into scales right now. John Coltrane
46,432. You know, John Coltrane has been sort of a god to me. Seems like, in a way, he didn’t get the inspiration out of other musicians. He had it. When you hear a cat do a thing like that, you got to go along with him. I think I heard Coltrane before I really got close to Miles [Davis]. Miles had a tricky way of playing his horn that I didn't understand as much as I did Coltrane. I really didn’t understand what Coltrane was doing, but it was so exciting the thing that he was doing. (Jazz & Inspiration) Wes Montgomery, cited Downbeat 1961
46,501. I never practice my guitar ... From time to time I just open the case and throw in a piece of raw meat. (Jazz & Guitar) Wes Montgomery
46,433. I can’t stand to sing the same song the same way two nights in succession, let alone two years or ten years. If you can, then it ain’t music, it’s close-order drill or exercise or yodeling or something, not music. (Jazz & Singer) Billie Holiday, Lady Sings the Blues
28,562. You can be up to your boobies in white satin, with gardenias in your hair and no sugar-cane for miles but you can still be working on a plantation. (Slavery & Racism & Jazz) ibid.
43,685. In this country, don’t forget, a habit is no damn private hell. There’s no solitary confinement outside of jail. A habit is hell for those you love. (Drugs & Habit & Addiction & Jazz & Heroin) ibid.
43,675. Dope never helped anybody sing better or play music better or do anything better. All dope can do for you is kill you – and kill you the long, slow, hard way. (Drugs & Heroin & Jazz) Billie Holiday