Dear Local Radio Station… An Appeal for More Jazz!

“Jazz speaks to everybody on the planet.” (Eric Clapton during a concert with Wynton Marsalis)

Recently I ran three posts on my Facebook Jazzers Group which elicited a host of responses. The title of one of these posts was the theme of all three – i.e. “Campaigning for the Future of Jazz”, which in effect is what Jazz&Jazz is all about.

One bone of contention frequently aired on Jazzers is the lack of New Orleans Revivalist Jazz (which came to be known as Traditional Jazz) played on the radio and the suggestion was made that fellow Jazzers join in a campaign to lobby broadcasters and radio stations across the length and breadth of the United Kingdom and Europe to play more, much more, of “our kind of music”.

This brought a healthy response from members of Jazzers prepared to support the campaign and along with Jeff Matthews I agreed to draft a letter which our fellow Jazzers could use to send to local radio stations in their areas.

So below is the draft letter and I would urge jazz lovers everywhere to use it to send to their local broadcasters and even telecasters. You can reinforce our campaign by telling us in the “Speak Your Mind” slot below just which stations you have lobbied.

I will share this post on my Facebook Jazzers Group so that members of the Group will also be able to join in and reinforce our campaign.

 

 

Peter M Butler
Editor and Owner of Jazz&Jazz

PS Anyone on Facebook who is not a member of Jazzers and would like to join the group can do so by sending a Friend Request to me at Peter Mark Butler. I will then send you an invite to join the Group.

THE DRAFT LETTER

Dear Local Radio Station,

I sometime wonder if it has passed the attention of radio station controllers that increasing numbers of potential listeners are over 60. Many of us didn’t follow the Beatles or the Stones, because we had already become hooked on jazz. In those days the in thing was traditional jazz. We packed the jazz clubs, followed the bands and danced to their music. Many of us even found our future ‘mates’ at jazz gigs.

Those were the days when Louis Armstrong was still a major artiste and ‘Wonderful World’ and ‘Hello Dolly’ were regularly played on radio programmes. We were mesmerised by Acker Bilk’s ‘Stranger on The Shore’ and Kenny Ball’s ‘Midnight in Moscow’ and we tapped our feet to many other hits. They made us feel happy and lifted our spirits like other music didn’t. To this day it’s said in the jazz world “If you can’t whistle the tune on the way home, it just ain’t jazz!” We had a vibrant jazz music scene in those days, before over produced ‘pop’ was forced on us.

Sadly, some people think this music is too out of date to play today. It is not. It is still as much alive in our hearts and souls as it was in our youth. Kenny Ball and Terry Lightfoot may no longer be with us, but Keith Ball and Melinda Lightfoot are following in their footsteps. Acker still tours and Chris Barber’s band features some wonderful young jazz musicians. Not only that but a new era of young bands is emerging on both sides of the Atlantic. In the UK we have The Rich Bennett Band, The Adrian Cox Quartet, TJ Johnson, The Brownfield Byrne Quintet, The Fallen Heroes, Dom Pipkin and The Ikos (Dom is Paloma Faith’s pianist and musical director), and in the USA, amongst others, a wonderful new band called Tuba Skinny.

Jazz isn’t dead. It’s vibrant, alive and thrilling. Not only are there significant numbers of us silver haired music lovers who want to hear and enjoy much more traditional jazz played on our local radio stations, there is also an emerging new generation of jazz fans.

As Eric Clapton recently confessed when starring with Wynton Marsalis, “There’s something about jazz and there always will be in my heart that puts it somewhere up there with the gods … it’s refined … sophisticated … and has a lot of humour and depth. It speaks to everybody on the planet.”

So on behalf of jazz fans young and old, might I appeal to you [Radio Whichever Station Controller] to dedicate a fair chunk of time to jazz and satisfy our needs?

Sincerely,

Signature & Name

A silver haired music lover OR  A New Generation Jazz Fan!

Note: This could be sent by email but if sent by post it might be a good idea to enclose an SAE.

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Comments

  1. Syd says:

    A well crafted letter Peter, we can discuss at The Brothers tomorrow!

  2. Syd says:

    Hi Peter, I hope you don’t mind me using your wonderful online organ to make an appeal to The Brothers, AKA The United Life Chuch of Oregon, regarding attendance figures. In my time as a Brother we have initiated many good young musicians who seem to have have got out of the habit of going. It was proposed by The Dervish, Mike Hogh, at Monday’s meeting that we change from the evening gathering to a lunchtime instead. This may be better for both the older and younger members. We are accepting new members as always but they have to be of the Jazz fraternity and sponsored and seconded by existing members. The editor of this site, Peter Butler, was initiated this week and is none the worse for it. So, back to the point …. Dear Brothers, young and old, it would be a pity if the Brotherhood were to fold through lack of support, it’s usually a lot of fun and great for networking ……… please reply on here your view regarding lunchtime meetings …. Syd

  3. Brian says:

    For all you Jazz buffs ,you might like to know about a small radio station ” Biggles FM 104.80. broadcasts from Potton Bedfordshire. 24/7
    On a Friday night 7.00- 10.00 once a fortnight, next one 14 March 2014 the “Doris & Flo” show play good jazz mainly between 8.00 and 9.00. if you are more than about 12-15 miles from Potton you would have to tune in on your computer just type Biggles FM and follow the links and it can be heard all over the world. Phone 01767 260111 and give them some support.
    Cheers Brian.

    • Peter Butler says:

      Thanks for that, Brian. I have in fact tuned into Biggles FM whilst on the road in Bedfordshire. But not yet the “Doris & Flo” show. I’ll have to make a point of listening to it.

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