Moving jazz forward
Jazz. It’s magical, inspirational and meaningful. At its core jazz is about remembering the past, but always with a focus on progression. And while there is still amazing jazz product being created, the general perception of jazz to music consumers is that it can be stuffy, difficult to access, and stuck in neutral. This is a paradigm that seemed logical ten years ago when purchase habits were extremely genre-focused, but the death of the physical music store is demolishing that consumer behavior. In the world of iTunes and digital music sharing, the genre-lines are increasingly blurred. This is enabling music purchases to be defined as 'what song I like' rather than 'what genre I attach my identity to'. This evolution is a great opportunity for jazz to find a sustainable and profitable path.
Here at THIS IS RED we know that jazz needs to have some realignment to be relevant now and into the future, so one of our own is helping to make a change. THIS IS RED Principal Jeff Myers joins Peter Gordon (Thirsty Ear Recordings), Michael Ricci (All About Jazz), Marty Ashby (MCG Jazz), and Don Lucoff (DL Media) to work in the leadership group of the newly formed Jazz Forward Coalition, an organization seeking to create a global and unified voice for jazz.
We're no strangers to the style and emotion jazz exudes. We have been commissioned to create artwork for several Grammy-winning jazz releases (not to name drop, but Dizzy Gillespie, Nancy Wilson and Paquito D’Rivera have some GREAT-looking album covers), and have developed initiatives combining Coca-Cola and jazz for the European market. However, thus far the biggest initiative has been the Jazz Forward Coalition. Jeff and the other jazz megaminds have been getting some pretty hip media attention, with mentions by NPR, All About Jazz, and the Jazz Journalists Association. Check out the “Business of Jazz” newsletter for a look at one of the first activations of the Jazz Forward Coalition.
Kudos to Jeff and the JFC team for helping to raise the profile of jazz in our vibrant and ever-evolving culture. While our ii-V-I's may never be up to snuff, there is usually some serious scatting going on in our office. Or maybe that’s just Destro mumbling some code to himself...