“Jazz Changes: An interdisciplinary jazz studies colloquium"
March 4, 2004, in conjunction with the 27th Annual KU Jazz Festival, March 3-6 2004, University of Kansas, Lawrence
Dixieland, boogie-woogie, swing, jump, bebop, modal, free, fusion, hip-bop: dissimilar musics in many ways, yet all called "jazz" by some people (though usually not without a fight) until absorbed (or not) by what Krin Gabbard calls "the jazz canon." Yet, if there's one thing we can learn from this vast collection of musics known at different times as "jazz" it's this: jazz changes. Historically, jazz has proven to be a flexible category that crosses musical, social, political, cultural, commercial, technological, and geographic borders. At the same time, "jazz," or what Scott DeVeaux has called the "jazz tradition," signifies for its supporters fiercely guarded notions of which specific sounds and meanings belong in the category of "pure jazz." The "jazz wars" between traditionalists and modernists that Bernard Gendron has tracked in revivalist/swing debates and over the swing/bebop split, now appear as debates over whether new forms--electronica, for instance, or hip hop inspired styles--count as "real jazz." In spite of a history of jazz changes, the discourses of jazz reception, criticism, marketing, education, and historiography are permeated with notions of purity and authenticity--not of hybridity and difference.
"Jazz Changes" is an all-day colloquium organized by the newly formed KU Interdisciplinary Jazz Studies Group, that will explore jazz, not as a logical march from style to style, but as a history of often drastic change and debate. The colloquium will be held in conjunction with the 27th Annual KU Jazz Festival, directed by Dan Gailey, at the University of Kansas, a series of concerts and workshops that will also explore jazz as a dynamic and changing field. Participants will have the opportunity to hear papers and concerts, and also to explore jazz studies resources at University of Kansas, including the Dick Wright Jazz Archive. Keynote speakers include Ingrid Monson, Harvard Professor and author of Saying Something: Jazz Improvisation and Interaction and another distinguished speaker TBA.
We seek papers that focus on moments of drastic jazz changes: historical, aesthetic, social, political, geographic, critical, cultural, commercial, technological. Some examples might be sudden shifts of jazz styles, debates over what counts as jazz (for instance current debates over whether a turn-table can be a jazz instrument, which jazz styles should receive institutional support at Lincoln Center or academic jazz studies programs, what is the role of social categories such as race, gender, sexuality, nation, and capitalism, in jazz debates at particular times), and fissures in binaries of tradition/modern, art/entertainment, black/universal, American/global, etc.
CALL FOR PAPERS
Deadline: November 1, 2003
Send 300-word proposals for individual papers or panels, electronically or by mail, to the contact below.
"Jazz Changes" is organized by the KU Interdisciplinary Jazz Studies Group, whose members include: Chuck Berg, Professor, Film/Video; C.C. Herbison, Instructor, Department of African and African-American Studies; Dan Gailey, Associate Professor and Director of Jazz Studies; William J. Harris, Associate Professor of English; Clarence Henry, Assistant Professor of Ethnomusicology; Paul Laird, Associate Professor of Musicology; Roberta Freund Schwartz, Assistant Professor of Musicology; and Sherrie Tucker, Assistant Professor, American Studies.
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