The Jazzonian

Jazz is Diversity. Jazz is Democracy.


From the demented mind of Rusty Taylor
Jester and Vocalist for jazz band

Southern Standard Time
Points of Interest
in this month's issue

  • Salutations
  • A Few Jazz Notes
  • My Journal Entry for October 22, 2018
  • Mueller Time
  • Women's Global March for Dignity
  • Apothegmatical Axioms of the Month
  • Humanity Is Not Sacrosanct
  • It's A Quad Thing; You May Not Understand
  • Glossary
  • Valediction
If, perchance, you, dear reader, are interested in following my musings, my singing, my puns, my dancing, or simply wish to receive an occasional jolt of cognitive stimulation followed by restorative positive energy, I encourage you to join my facebook group:

A Monthly Storyletter
November 2018

The Jazzonian is a quirky e-storyletter published monthly unless the author is somehow incapacitated. It details the growing jazz scene in Columbus, Georgia and the surrounding Chattahoochee Valley, written exclusively by Rusty Taylor, a Mercer alumnus and the quadriplegic jester-singer for the vocal jazz band Southern Standard Time. The newsletter takes a rhetorical approach to current events from the point of view of a progressive student of Life who, for thirty-two years and counting, has been unable to perform even the most rudimentary acts of daily living.

But he can write... and sing.

Schwob Jazz Orchestra

2018-2019 Season

  • October 11 - Schwob Jazz Orchestra | RiverCenter for the Performing Arts, Studio Theatre | 7:30 PM | Free admission
  • October 30 - Kevin Whalen Faculty Jazz Recital | RiverCenter for the Performing Arts, Studio Theatre | 7:30 PM | Free admission. Chances Are It Swings: The Music of Shorty Rogers featuring Matt Roehrich (Valdosta State), Dan Kolan (Andrews College), Joe Girard (CSU), Bryan Canonigo (CSU), Randy Hoexter (LaGrange College), Ben Weatherford (CSU), Chris Enghauser (Georgia College), and Paul Vaillancourt (CSU)
  • November 2, 2018 - Schwob Jazz Quartet and the Cannonball Jazz Sextet | The Loft Upstairs (1032 Broadway) - Listening Room | 7:00 PM | Free admission
  • November 9, 2018 - Schwob Jazz Orchestra (SJO) | The Loft Upstairs (1032 Broadway) - The Loft Music Hall | 7:00 PM | Free admission
  • November 30, 2018 - Schwob Jazz Orchestra (SJO) @ The Broadway Ball | Rivermill Event Centre | 6:30 PM | Ticketed event

The Schwob Jazz Orchestra (SJO) is an18-piece large jazz ensemble focused on presenting the best in classic and modern big band music. For this concert, the band will be featuring the music of a wide variety of jazz big band icons. Selections will include The Queen Bee from the Count Basie Orchestra, an arrangement of Oliver Nelson’s Down By The Riverside, the iconic Big Dipper from the Thad Jones/Mel Lewis Orchestra, a special contribution from noted modern jazz composer Ben Markley, and a soprano saxophone feature on Pat Metheny’s perennial favorite James.

Under the direction of Dr. Kevin Whalen, the Jazz Studies Program builds upon the mission of the Columbus State University Schwob School of Music by offering its students engaging jazz performance opportunities synchronized with in-depth study of jazz music. The program also hosts several small jazz combos, a jazz workshop experience, and a thorough curriculum of jazz courses designed to enhance performance ability and prepare future music educators to teach jazz in their communities.

Live-stream: TBD
Dr. Kevin Whalen, Director of Jazz Studies
Columbus State University

Columbus Jazz Society

The Columbus Jazz Society is a (501)(3)(c) non-profit organization who, for over 30 years, have existed solely for the benefit of enjoying the expression of live jazz and to promote the education of this art form to our members and the general public. The Society is about rendering service and promoting, creating and supporting musical events.

The Columbus Jazz Society began in the 80‘s as a few musicians got together monthly to play, sing and enjoy live jazz. As more and more musicians and their friends came together they found the need to locate into a common public area to accommodate everyone. This began at hotel convention rooms, then local restaurants, and a night club (The Loft) that would host them for the joy of the music. They later established a membership fee to cover the costs of paying musicians to insure that a full set of players would be in attendance. Any money over and above our society needs is used for charity. 

For a list of area jazz events, click  here  .
Monthly Musician Birthdays

November 1
1959 - Conrad Herwig - trombone

November 2
1924 - Rudy Van Gelder - producer (died August 25, 2016)
1926 - Lou Donaldson - alto sax
1967 - Kurt Elling - vocalist
1971 - Antonio Sanchez - drums

November 3
1933 - John Barry - Composer (died January 30, 2011)
1977 - Jane Monheit - vocalist

November 6
1854 - John Philip Sousa - composer/conductor (died March 6, 1932)
1949 - Anturo Sandoval - trumpet

November 7
1943 - Joni Mitchell - vocalist/composer

November 8
1963 - Russell Malone - guitar

November 14
1934 - Ellis Marsalis - piano

November 16
1873 - W. C. Handy - arranger (died March 28, 1958)
1964 - Diana Krall - piano/vocalist

November 19
1905 - Tommy Dorsey - trombone/conductor (died November 26, 1956)

November 20
1925 - June Christy - vocalist (died June 21, 1990)
1946 - Duane Allman - guitarist (died October 29, 1971)

November 21
1904 - Coleman Hawkins - tenor sax (died May 19, 1969)
1940 - Dr. John - piano/vocals

November 22
1899 - Hoagy Carmichael - piano/vocals (died December 27, 1981)

November 24
1868 - Scott Joplin - piano (died April 1, 1917)

November 26
1924 - Paul Desmond - alto sax (died )
1931 - Nat Adderly - trumpet (died January 2, 2000)

November 27
1942 - Jimi Hendrix - guitar (died September 18, 1970)
1945 - Randy Brecker - trumpet
1953 - Lyle Mays - piano
1960 - Maria Schneider - composer/big band leader

November 29
1915 - Billy Strayhorn - piano/composer (died May 31, 1967)
1940 - Chuck Mangione - flugelhorn

Happy birthday Joni Mitchell, November 6
Friday Evening Jazz at The Loft
Monthly Schedule for November 2018
At this moment, I haven't received info on who is playing at The Loft throuthout November; however, I will post the info when I get it to my facebook group Southern Standard Timers.


The times are a-changing, and it’s beautiful. Sure, we’re witnessing the unadulterated—or a supremely courted and adulterous—white-knuckled panic from proponents of a status quo that is insidiously evanescing into nihility, but their plangent pearl-clutching fear is finally falling on deaf ears. The patriarchal influence that has directed the political agenda ad nauseam is dying; it is insidiously being replaced by matriarchy that appropriates authority equitably, which makes the status quo nervous… mainly because, as we have all inherently understood deep within the visceral resources that reside beyond conscious thought, the status quo has been cheating, which is corroborated by the fact that both Bush the Lesser and Trump the Least lost the popular vote of their inaugural presidencies. Their overt cheating has finally unnerved the cultic allegiance that hitherto animated the divisiveness that has permeated every crack in the foundation of our nation’s Democracy. It must be difficult for GOP parents to tell their children to not act like the president of the United States, to not act like the deplorable man whom they elected into the most prestigious job on the planet. Talk about your mixed message.

So here we are at a crossroads. We have fleeting days until we, as a nation, decide whether or not we want the next decade or score to be administrated by speciously accessorized monochromatic oligarchy personified in the flaccid jowls and weak chin of Mitch McConnell or whether we anti-transmogrify the gothic grossly gargoyle-like covetousness of personal wealth and power into the more equitable, democratic inclusion of social reform as personified in the likes of the vernally exciting vigoroso of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez or Beto O’Rourke.

For those of us who are the most vulnerable, this outcome has undesirable peripheral effects that are life threatening and that prompt the questioning of whether or not people with pre-existing conditions are worthy of Life, which is confusing to me on a personal level because I seem to make some people smile… inwardly.

Late last month (October), I was invited to sing for a fundraising talent show that highlighted amazing entertainers who possess physical handicaps (all of which are preexisting conditions that are the bane of the GOP’s money lusting over a for-profit healthcare system). SHOW-Ability™ is an annual event sponsored by the non-profit Abel2, which is spearheaded by international singing sensation Myrna Clayton. (Fo’ mo’ info, I highly recommend your visiting the organization’s website by clicking here .) Fortunately, the program was videoed; however, due to the quickly approaching deadline and a staff of one, I have been unable to procure a copy; although, I encourage your patience because as soon as I get a copy, I will be sharing it with the unabashed shamelessness of our current administration’s lascivious coveting for lying to the public.

(For those of you interested in my musings, singing, writing, dancing, and potential delving into the arena of the standup comedian— a single person with only a microphone versus the leonine crowd of people who paid money to make them laugh —then I cordially invite you to join my facebook group Southern Standard Timers , a group of people who yearn for positive energy. If you’re interested, please click here and join the fun. Be the first in your neighborhood to realize that I can be a funny dude with a botanically and pharmaceutically inspired wit.)

Sorry for the shameless promotion, but the tacit theme of this particular essay is to determine whether or not I deserve to live, so…

Many of you Southern Standard Timers already know that I cut my teeth as a singer at the swanky restaurant Carriage and Horses restaurant in Pine Mountain, Georgia surrounded by acres of pastoral pastureland grazed by bovine and equine majesty in a portrait composed by a master artist. Serendipitously, I’ve returned with pianist Mark Young to sing, once again, among the Robin Leach lifestyle of the rich and famous. Dagher, the proprietor, informs me that his busy season is quickly approaching (neighboring Callaway Gardens’ Fantasy in Lights draws in tens of thousands of tourist dollars each year to the area), and he expects to use Mark and me a few times a week.

I am also honored to sing four to six songs by the Jane Drake Band who hosts the weekly jazz jam at Eighth and Rail, which is so groovy because the people who listen (both the musicians and audience) seem to genuinely dig it. I am also respected by heavyweight jazz musicians whom I will not embarrass by listing (although a few of them are of GRAMMY nominated quality). The vexing concern by some of my friends and family is that I don’t get paid for singing each week at the jazz jam or other area jams, but not I.

If I get paid over a certain amount of income, I lose my Medicare and my monthly Social Security income even though I wouldn’t make near enough to support my living… my life. Again, this doesn’t bother me in the least because, quite simply, I am doing exactly what I want to by singing, writing, dancing, and spreading positive energy while the very good friends I met while working in corporate America still struggle towards a retirement so that they can pursue their respective felicities afterward. I, on the other hand, not only have different fingers, but I also have nothing to lose but happiness, and, quite frankly, I believe that I can be happy anywhere as long as I am not in pain… and am able to sing.

Peace Through Music

Callaway Gardens's Fantasy in Lights

Jazz Poetry

From wikipedia: Poets have been drawn to jazz by the oral roots and oral power of jazz music, and often they recite their verses. They have come in search of the body, of rhythm and of sound, refugees from the printed page, seeking a popular voice and public ear denied to poetry of the page. In his book Digitopia Blues – Race, Technology and the American Voice, poet and saxophonist John Sobol argues that jazz was a transformative vehicle for African-American self-empowerment whose dominant characteristic and purpose was a search for mastery of a language of power, undertaken by a historically enslaved oral people denied access to words of power. Sobol believes that poets who have felt constrained by the hegemony of the literate tradition have grasped an essential kinship with jazz as a realm of masterful oral power and have sought to mimic or recreate jazz modalities in their poetry, thus earning the description 'jazz poetry'... It was with the advent of the Harlem Renaissance that jazz poetry developed into what it is today.
The Weary Blues
by Langston Hughes (1902-1967)

Droning a drowsy syncopated tune,
Rocking back and forth to a mellow croon,
I heard a Negro play.
Down on Lenox Avenue the other night
By the pale dull pallor of an old gas light
He did a lazy sway . . .
He did a lazy sway . . .
To the tune o’ those Weary Blues.
With his ebony hands on each ivory key
He made that poor piano moan with melody.
O Blues!
Swaying to and fro on his rickety stool
He played that sad raggy tune like a musical fool.
Sweet Blues!
Coming from a black man’s soul.
O Blues!
In a deep song voice with a melancholy tone
I heard that Negro sing, that old piano moan—
“Ain’t got nobody in all this world,
Ain’t got nobody but ma self.
I’s gwine to quit ma frownin’
And put ma troubles on the shelf.”

Thump, thump, thump, went his foot on the floor.
He played a few chords then he sang some more—
“I got the Weary Blues
And I can’t be satisfied.
Got the Weary Blues
And can’t be satisfied—
I ain’t happy no mo’
And I wish that I had died.”
And far into the night he crooned that tune.
The stars went out and so did the moon.
The singer stopped playing and went to bed
While the Weary Blues echoed through his head.
He slept like a rock or a man that’s dead.

Abel 2, Inc.

Mission Statement: To enhance the Quality of Life of People with Disabilities and the Under-served by Creating Music and Arts opportunities for Employment and Enjoyment!

  • Are you a Performing Artist (singer, dancer, musician, actor, comedian, poet, etc.)?
  • Do you have a disability?  
  • Do you know anyone who is?  

Abel 2 wants you to promote your talent!

We are in the process of building a database of performing artists with disabilities who reside in the Southeast. Send us the contact name and information on our "Contact Us" page or email us at Be sure to include your talent, level of experience, head shot, and video of one of your performances. Click on banner for more info about Abel 2 or click the photo of Myrna Clayton, artistic/executive director for Abel 2.

An Archived Essay I Wrote on March 24, 2016

Eugenics Shapes A Southern Strategy

A Contemporary Tragedy

For the too many nativists who currently embrace the ignorant and racially divisive rhetoric of Donald J. Trump as he grandstands his way toward the GOPʼs nomination for the 2016 presidency—and who erroneously believe that the U.S. is not only the greatest nation on the planet but who also believe that it is the singular, exclusively infallible government that has ever existed—arenʼt really paying attention or havenʼt studied our nationʼs history very thoroughly, and Iʼm not going to mention the way we, as a nation, destroyed almost entirely the aboriginal population that Christopher Columbus “discovered” on his failed journey to find a western oceanic passage to India; the unconscionable institution of slavery; the subjugation of women, including unequal pay for equal work; the emetic acceptance that the Japanese internment camps of WWII are a verity of our nationʼs history; the failure of Reaganomic hubris; and the equally embarrassing wars on drugs and poverty. These are but a few examples of what may go awry when groups of people become clans of chaos.

In the early 20th century, a popular Eugenics program emerging from Great Britain infiltrated into the U.S. political scene. Eugenics is a social philosophy advocating the improvement of human genetic traits through the promotion of breeding couples with superior genetic traits while reducing reproduction in couples with inferior genetic traits via sterilization, marriage restriction, or forced abstinence. Unfortunately, since there was no unified, codified test for negative genetic inferiority, many groups were exploited. People with mental and physical disabilities, people who scored negatively on various IQ tests, criminals, deviants; and members of minority groups: Jews, homosexuals, Muslims, Romani, and the homeless were targeted by supporters of what was, and is, in reality, justified genocide.

The various IQ tests that were given to the social outcasts were laughable. They were very primitive tests of the time which included insipid questions that were irrelevant to whether or not one was deemed an imbecile, idiot, or moron, yet this was the formal hierarchy established by conventions of the time, a hierarchy established by the psychological profession and was actually written in government pamphlets. The state of Virginia used these tests as a way to promote Eugenics that resulted in the sterilization of a young woman named Carrie Buck.

In 1927, the United States Supreme Court case of Buck vs Bell upheld a statute that enabled the state of Virginia to sterilize people who had been deemed mentally defective even if their diagnosis wasnʼt conducted by objective scientific methodology. Carrie Buck had been confined to the Virginia State Colony for Epileptics and the Feebleminded even though she was neither mentally disabled nor epileptic; she was merely poor, and as a result of her penury, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the state of Virginia had the right to sterilize her. Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr., one of our nationʼs most celebrated justices, wrote the majority opinion stating with authoritarian confidence that “Three generations of imbeciles is enough… [The nation must sterilize those who] sap the strength of the state [to] prevent our being swamped with incompetence… It is better for all the world if, instead of waiting to execute degenerate offspring for crime or to let them starve for their imbecility, society can prevent those who are manifestly unfit from continuing their kind.” The chief justice of the Supreme Court at the time was William Howard Taft, the former President of the U.S. as well as former president of Yale Law School.

This embarrassing decision, considered unconscionable now, resulted in 60,000 to 70,000 sterilizations of American citizens deemed “unfit” to reproduce under questionable guidelines. The Supreme Court decision was not only accepted by a significant number of our nationʼs citizenry, it became justification to pursue Eugenics. Sadly, there are some who even today, with all the scientific evidence to the contrary, embrace Eugenics as a way to justify racial supremacy and stereotypes that are simply ignorant.

During this time period, the “Roaring Twenties” with its flappers, bootleg whiskey, and sensual jazz music, there was major international support for eugenics. Among its proponents were such notable historical icons as Teddy Roosevelt (who wrote in the January 1914 edition of The Outlook magazine, “I wish very much that the wrong people could be prevented entirely from breeding… Feeble-minded persons [should be] forbidden to leave offspring behind them”), FDR (who thought that the Japanese were inherently inferior, which facilitated the internment camps during WWII), Alexander Graham Bell, H. G. Wells (who later rescinded), Winston Churchill, Herbert Hoover, George Bernard Shaw, John Maynard Keynes, W. E. B. Du Bois even Margaret Sanger, the founder of Planned Parenthood. Eugenics was taught in major universities. It was popular in the press and in best-selling books, all part of a major movement.

People throughout the world honestly believed that their respective nations needed to uplift racial profiles by manipulating their gene pools. This very sad example of U.S. jurisprudence was also cited by lawyers for Nazi scientists in defense of their WWII war crimes at the Nuremberg Trials. In 1925, Adolf Hitler praised and incorporated eugenic ideas in his book “Mein Kampf” and emulated eugenic legislation for the sterilization of “defectives” that had been pioneered in the United States. The state of Indiana, in 1907, passed a eugenics sterilization law, well before the rise of the Nazi party. In fact, Harry Laughlin, a U.S. citizen who ran the Eugenic Records Office of Long Island and who was granted an honorary degree from the University of Heidelberg in 1936—the same year that the university purged all Jews from its faculty—was in correspondence with the Nazi scientists throughout the whole period. In his eugenics-based magazine, he often wrote how the Nazi Partyʼs eugenics program was based on his.

Contrarily, the Labor Party and the Catholic church each opposed eugenics. In the Buck vs Bell decision, eight of the nine judges voted in favor of the state of Virginiaʼs sterilization of human beings deemed somehow inferior even through questionable processes of determination. The only vote against it was the Catholic judge Pierce Butler. However, the American Eugenics Society initially gained some Catholic support, but it quickly waned after Pope Pius XIʼs 1930 encyclical that stated “Public magistrates have no direct political power over the bodies of their subjects, therefore, where no crime has taken place and there is no cause present for grave punishment, they can never directly harm, or tamper with the integrity of the body, either for the reasons of eugenics or for any other reason.” (I reckon that even though public magistrates have “no direct political power over the bodies of their subjects,” religious magistrates, probably exclusive to the papacy and, by extension, the Catholic community, can and do have power over oneʼs body when considering the right to abort unwanted pregnancies.)

A more negative reaction to eugenics nourished after it became associated with Nazi Germany and its holocaust movement wherein the German state murdered approximately 11 million people deemed inferior to the fabled Aryan myth. Many of the defendants at the Nuremberg trials decried that there was little difference between Nazi eugenics and the eugenics espoused by, among others, Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. One of the many things of which the Naziʼs were accused was their setting up a eugenics program in which they sterilized over 375,000 people. The Nazis argued that the U.S. Supreme Court declared eugenic sterilization Constitutional and thereby beneficent to society. Our own revered Oliver Wendell Holmes agreed. Why then was it a bane in Germany?

After WWII and the emergence of the concept of human rights, many nations abandoned their overt associations with Eugenics, criticizing a vulnerability towards abuse due to a criteria of selection that is determined by whoever holds political power at any given time. The fact that Eugenics directly violates basic human rights, including the right to reproduction, along with the possible loss of genetic diversity and interbreeding depression, also led to the movementʼs decline.

During the early twentieth century, Eugenics dealt more with sterilization and enforced reproduction laws (no inter-racial marriage and marriage restrictions based on land ownership). Modern Eugenics has unprecedented capabilities to map genomes; embryos can be tested for life-altering diseases, and vitro fertilization is increasingly more common. Eugenics no longer has much to do with living adults and their biological relationships but, instead, now mainly deals with preemptive action on the unborn. Still and all, Eugenics can lead to loss of genetic diversity—the ability to manipulate the fetus and determine who the child will be is something questioned by both opponents and proponents of eugenics. Most of the ethical concerns over Eugenics involve issues of morality and power. Obviously, Eugenics controls racial determination within the fetus as well as other measurable aspects of the human condition that can be manipulated by the powerful and, as such, must be debated assiduously before something possibly cataclysmic results. In this particular instance, objective scientific methodology should be considered before subjective political prowess.

Although Eugenics declined shortly after its association with Nazi Germany and its abominable holocaust, its connection with racial supremacy helped develop the Southern Strategy. In U.S. politics, the Southern Strategy refers to a strategy used by Republican Party candidates to gain Southern support by appealing to racism against African-Americans, mostly as a reaction against the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965, which pushed to dismantle the restrictive Jim Crow laws that had enforced legal segregation in the South since the Reconstruction Era. President Nixon used it very effectively, attracting white Southern voters who had traditionally voted Democratic to vote Republican instead by consciously appealing to southern votersʼ racial resentments to gain support. In 2005, Republican National Committee chairman Ken Mehlman formerly apologized to the NAACP for exploiting racial polarization to win elections and ignoring the black vote.

One of the more overt strategies was for the GOP to express support for state rights, which was, and is, a covert way to associate their support for a pre-Civil War opposition to the federal government that ended slavery. It became a code-word to represent opposition to federal enforcement of Civil Rights. The Southern Strategy moved from national politics and soon incorporated local government, and as the GOP gained power, minority voters, including the poor, began experiencing difficulty in voting. Voter suppression, gerrymandering, and making voter registration increasingly more difficult helped suppress minority votes. Richard Milhouse Nixon and his staff took the Southern Strategy that had its humble origins in the late nineteenth century and developed a more detailed plan beginning with appealing directly to issues of white supremacy without overtly expressing it. Obfuscation, i.e. plausible denial, became the popular strategy to appeal to racially motivated voters. The key was to devise a system that recognized white supremacy while not appearing so. Key phrases such as “state rights,” “law and order,” “food stamps,” “forced busing,” “welfare state,” resentment against “affirmative action,” “welfare queen,” and “young fellow” to refer to fictional healthy, black welfare recipients, became ubiquitous in GOP campaigning, and it was dividing the nation along racial lines.

The covert white supremacy of the Southern Strategy has now transmogrified into the overt, racially divisive, nativist rhetoric of Donald J. Trump, the self-indulgent monster that the GOP itself not only created but nourished into the formidable behemoth heʼs become—recall how practically the GOP candidates sequaciously exposed their underbellies, spreading their legs to expose their semiprecious family jewels to Trumpʼs scrutiny for the billionaireʼs endorsement throughout the 2012 presidential campaign against President Obama. Trump now seems to have the support of a constituency dedicated to blaming the African-American president for each national failure while raising the Confederate flag to honor its Caucasian supremacy.

For nearly four decades, the GOP has maliciously morphed from a business-centered, small town, pasty-white, Anglo-Saxon Protestant set of beliefs into quite possibly America’s primary proponent of bigotry, ignorance, war- and fear-mongering and the calloused exploitation of the vulnerable and powerless, but Donald Trump isnʼt the exclusive destructive element of the GOP; he is the fulfillment of everything the party has been ambiguously stating for two score or more. He is merely proffering hatred much more plangently and with a concise clarity that is unequivocal even for prepubescent comprehension. Times are as tense now as they were in 1927 when the Supreme Court, with nationalistic support, constitutionalized the legal sterilization of U.S. citizens deemed unfit by questionable criteria. What happens next is unknown, but it is my hope that the ignorant, nihilistic flock that endorses social chaos will ultimately see the light and start ignoring such base ignorance.

Adam Cohen is a journalist and lawyer, previously a member of The New York Times editorial board and senior writer for Time magazine. In his book Imbeciles: The Supreme Court, American Eugenics, and the Sterilization of Carrie Buck, Adam writes about Buck vs Bell in detail. On March 18, 2016, Amy Goodman, reporter for Democracy Now! interviews Adam, He talks about Carrie Buck:

[Carrie Buck] a young woman who is growing up in Charlottesville, Virginia, being raised by a single mother. Back then, there was a belief that it was better often to take poor children away from their parents and put them in middle-class homes. So she was put in a foster family that treated her very badly. She wasn’t allowed to call the parents “mother” and “father.” She did a lot of housekeeping for them and was rented out to the neighbors. And then, one summer, she was raped by the nephew of her foster mother. She becomes pregnant out of wedlock. And rather than help her with this pregnancy, they decide to get her declared epileptic and feebleminded, though she was neither, and she’s shipped off to the Colony for Epileptics and Feebleminded outside of Lynchburg, Virginia… she gets there at just the wrong time. Virginia has just passed an eugenics sterilization law, and they want to test it in the courts. So they seize on Carrie Buck as the perfect plaintiff in this lawsuit. So they decide to make her the first person in Virginia who will be eugenically sterilized, and suddenly she’s in the middle of a case that’s headed to the U.S. Supreme Court… they decide to put her in the middle of this test case to see if the Virginia law is constitutional. And they give her a lawyer who’s actually not on her side. It’s a former chairman of the Colony for Epileptics and Feebleminded’s own board of directors. He clearly wants to see her sterilized. He does a terrible job writing short briefs that don’t cite the relevant cases. It goes up to the Supreme Court, and the court rules eight to one that, yes, the Virginia law is constitutional, and, yes, Carrie, who there’s nothing wrong with, should be sterilized against her will.

Adam Cohen continues the interview suggesting that the early twentieth century in the U.S. was rife with anxiety; the establishment of the U.S. saw the threat of mass immigration from, among others, Jews and Italians:

Yes. [The eugenics movement] came over in the early ’10s and ’20s, 1910s and 1920s. This was actually a very nervous time. You know, you see movies now about the 1920s, you see flappers and Prohibition and parties. But America was actually at a time of quiet turmoil. There were the highest rates of immigration that there had been in American history, so the nation’s cities were flooded with new immigrants, often with different religions, different nationalities from the people who were already here. Also, people were leaving the farms and moving to the cities. So it was a time of instability. And historians suggest that in this time of instability, the upper classes, the Anglo-Saxons in the United States, wanted to somehow control a changing country. And the way they saw of controlling it was eugenics: “We need to firm up our gene pool.” So it was that anxiety that got moved into this eugenics movement. And they combined it with the new science of genetics that was emerging, and they came up with these crazy sterilization laws.

Eugenics and its mass appeal led to the 1924 Immigration Act. Cohen responds:

Yes, it was largely, in large part, motivated by eugenics. So, … Harry Laughlin, he was actually appointed expert eugenics agent to Congress. There’s letterhead from the U.S. House Committee on Immigration that says “expert eugenics agent.” He testified about the eugenic advantages and disadvantages of various nationalities, and he persuaded Congress that Eastern European Jews, Italians, Asians were genetically inferior and we had to keep them out. That ends up being translated into the 1924 law, which puts in place for the first time national quotas. So you can no longer just show up at Ellis Island. If you’re coming from some countries, we don’t want you. If you’re coming from England and northern Europe, we do want you. So, this ended up completely changing the national composition of immigration, and it was because certain people were deemed to be inferior.

And one thing that I thought about when I wrote the book is, when we read The Diary of Anne Frank and we realize that she died in a concentration camp, we think about how the Nazis thought the Jews were a lesser race, and that’s why they were put in concentration camps. What we don’t think about it is, Anne Frank’s father was actually trying to get her and the family to America. He was writing repeatedly to the State Department for visas. He was turned down. He was turned down because of this 1924 act. So when we hear that Anne Frank died in a concentration camp, it’s also because the U.S. Congress, like the Nazis, thought the Jews were an inferior race.

Cohen also describes the sterilization operation:

It’s kind of barbaric to think about. And actually, before, in the early stage of eugenics, it started out with castration. And the eugenicists were having trouble getting legislatures to adopt eugenic sterilization laws, because people didn’t like the idea of actually castrating people. And it was actually the medical advances—the rise of the vasectomy and the salpingectomy, which is what was done to women, the cauterizing of the Fallopian tubes—that made it a little bit more palatable. But these were still terrible operations, and you can imagine what surgery was like in the 1920s. So someone like Carrie Buck was sterilized at the Colony for Epileptics and Feebleminded by the man, the doctor, who was the superintendent of the colony, and it was a terribly invasive operation. She had to recover for two weeks. They cut her open. And, you know, all kinds of anesthesia and medical procedures were rather primitive then.

So this is what the government was doing. I mean, you think about governmental invasion of your rights. Now we’re concerned, as we should be, about the government, you know, reading our emails and listening in to our phone calls. They are operating on women and men in this most barbaric way. And, I mean, it’s really shocking. And as we’ve seen, the Supreme Court, eight to one, said not only that this is fine, but the Supreme Court encouraged the nation to do more. It said, you know, not only is the Virginia law constitutional, not only is it OK to sterilize Carrie Buck, we need more of these operations.

Unfortunately, Buck vs Bell is still the law of the land. In 2001, the U.S. Court of Appeals in Missouri, which is one step below the U.S. Supreme Court, cited Buck vs Bell in a case involving sterilization of a mildly mentally retarded woman. It is still the law of the land. There are cases where women in prisons are sterilized against their wills. There is currently a lot of fear in this land, and no one knows how far this fear will grow. This fear seems to parallel the Southern Strategy in its hate- and fear-mongering as well as our nationʼs current xenophobia.

In conclusion, Cohen then talks about a final couple of very sad notes about Carrie Buck. First, Carrie was not mentally impaired:

People who knew her later in life said she absolutely was not feebleminded. When she was at a retirement home, she loved getting the newspaper every day, and she used to work on the crossword puzzle.

And one other sad—there are so many sad parts of the story, but she had a sister, Doris, who was also at the colony. Doris was sterilized shortly after she was. Years later, when she was an old woman, she wanted to get Social Security, and she wrote to the colony to find out how old she was, because she didn’t know. And the colony director came and visited her and told her that she was old enough for Social Security. He also told her that she had been sterilized. She and her husband began crying, because they had been trying their whole lives to have children. No one had ever told her that the government had sterilized her. She had been told that she had an appendectomy. And when she went to the doctor, he said, “You have this scar.” And she said, “Yeah, it’s because they did an appendectomy on me.” They had actually sterilized her, and her whole life, she never knew.

* * *

It amazes me on a personal level how there are still too many people who vote for incapable public servants because of their belief that the government somehow knows whatʼs best for someone elseʼs body, especially women… as long as the governmental encroachment doesnʼt concern them or their bodies. Voters continually fail to realize that politicians, especially male politicians, are merely employing divisive rhetoric to get votes… and vasts amounts of money. If men actually gave birth, abortion would not only be legal but strongly encouraged. “You want me to pass something the size of a bowling ball through THAT small hole?” Bring on the test tubes!

Earlier this year, one of my favorite kin capriciously shocked me when she admitted, proudly, that she not only watched Fox “Entertainment” as her exclusive source for news but that she voted an exclusive Republican ticket in the last election cycle without investigating any candidates. What surprised me the most, other than her overt ignorance, was the anger and fear in her voice, an unjustified vitriol that propelled from her aura like the pyroclastic explosion of Krakatoa. Sadly, she is not the only of my kin—our kith, for that matter—who has this myopic and lackluster political agenda. But that shouldnʼt surprise me. She grew up in the cult of Catholicism, a powerful religious institution that promotes a superiority to the rest of mankind by offering an idyllic post-terrestrial paradise for anyone who strictly adheres to the dogmatic doctrines as professed by its faithful congregation. This promise by Catholicism, and Christianity as well, encourages a deep, irrevocable acceptance in its members of their superiority to all other humans, but the hubris is wrapped in more palatable pious rhetoric that belies the underlying reality of social malfeasance, a universally acceptable faith that their “humble” superiority is of divine origin.

It threw me for a loop that my favorite kin unintentionally admitted that she was a racist, which, to me, was an awkward, possibly subconscious admission of white supremacy; her admission was ambiguous, admittedly, but she, like the aforementioned metaphoric lost sheep who collectively jumped on the band wagon of Eugenics… she justifies—or simply ignores—her racially motivated voting proclivities by claiming allegiance to the fabled fight against abortion. She has convinced herself that the GOP is serious about ending the legality of abortion even though the GOP never has… even when theyʼve controlled all the branches of government; the topic of abortion does make them a bunch of money in outrageous speaking fees. It is, however, this kind of herd mentality that encouraged many U.S. citizens to embrace Eugenics in the early twentieth century, the same kind of social pressure that currently directs many U.S. citizens to vote along racial criteria. If, only somehow, we could associate white supremacy with Nazism and the Holocaust, maybe we could end racism and finally unite our country in a national co-existence of peaceful, ethnic diversity.

Peace Through Music
March 19, 2016

NOTICE – This article is a commentary based on an interview as seen on television’s Democracy Now! when Amy Goodman interviewed Adam Cohen on March 18, 2016. It is also inspired by articles I read on To see Amy Goodman's interview, click here . I also encourage you to view the video below to learn about one of our nation's most unconscionable Supreme Court decisions ever.

Peace Through Music

A Few Jazz Notes
Thursday, October 25 at 11 o’clock in the morning, I participated in the Abel2 sponsored SHOW-Ability™ with other physically handicapped entertainers, and I had a blast. The headliner was “Delvis,” and the emcee was Jessie Simms AKA “Mira-Cool,” a standup comedian with cerebral palsy; he is also the head of a church, but I’m not really all that sure what that’s all about to comment on it, but if you'd like mo' info on Jessie's mission, visit his facebook page by clicking here . We also showcased a fashion show that featured models with disparate handicaps, but, again, it was beautiful.

“Delvis” is, as his epithet suggests, an Elvis impersonator named Delvin Lanning, and he is autistic. I am not ashamed to say that Delvin is, very simply, adorable. There is not an ounce of malice in his heart; he radiates nearly pure positive energy… and he channels Elvis… the young Elvis. Delvin himself is young; I am no expert in anything, so I may not be close to accurate in my assessment of Delvin’s age, but I’d say he’s in his late teens or early twenties; he’s thin, agile, mobile, hip-generating, costume-sparkling, glitzy, glittery, sequined, electric, and his vocal mimicry of the cultural pop icon is dead on. Delvin has nearly perfected the cloning of the character of Elvis the mega-superstar. Fo' mo' info one Delvis, click here .

Christy Priester is a poet, wheelchair-bound (although I don’t know the details), and she and I are friends. She’s a sweet, sensitive woman with a heart of gold that radiates some serious grandmotherly warmth that jolts my reality back to the time when “Gran’ ma” was the center of my private Universe. It’s in her poetry. Christie recited her poetry, and inspired me to find an ambiguous though specifically positive creative energy. Yeah, I know. It might take me the rest of my life to solve that particular riddle, but I really have few things better to do, so I’ll give it a gallant effort. Fo' mo' info on Christy's mission, click here .

I am honored (and actually humbled) that international singing sensation Myrna Clayton (the creative and business head of the non-profit Abel2 that sponsored the show) asked me to sing four songs: “All of Me,” “God Bless the Child,” “The Sunny side of the Street,” and “What A Wonderful World.” The highlight of the event was my singing the last song as a duet with Myrna! No lie! Myrna Clayton, the Myrna Clayton, the “International Songbird,” sang a duet with me ! An additional thrill is that I strongly believe that we did a great job. I’m hopin’ that it was recorded and that the recording is good ‘cause I will relive that moment often.

Peace Through Music

Mueller Time

I’ve been thinking… 

And yes… I surreptitiously procured a few healthy drags from my fictional Pipe of Inspiration. 

If, perchance, you, dear reader, haven’t cognitively assimilated the fact that my fictional persona really digs getting high from inhaling afflatus from the vaporous conflagration of botanical pharmacopoeia, then I must adduce that you haven’t been reading the essays I’ve penned throughout my life, principally in Columbus, Georgia’s Ledger-Inquirer (including, but not limited to, the vitriolic op-eds I wrote detracting Bush the Lesser, for which I received—in the mail… addressed to my house—a death threat that seems to have been written with the militant aggression of an anemic asthmatic kitten. I wrote quite a few opinionated 300-word essays (the newspaper’s limit) that can easily be verified, opinions I wrote against George W[ar Criminal] Bush during his controversial administration’s war-torturing cult of allegiance that totally ignored the very specific and overt warning concerning the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, and don’t even get me started on George W[ar Criminal] Bush’s expedient shepherding of high-level Saudi Arabian dissidents from the United States even after international airports were shut down for national security immediately after the 9/11 attacks after which Donald Trump boasted that he then owned the tallest building in New York, a jactitation (the false boasting or claim, especially one detrimental to the interest of another) like a twelve-year old boy's temper tantrum or a Yale law student’s justification for attempted rape, but I digress… )

The pundits on the ol’ TV are speculating about the usurper Donald J[ackanapes] Trump the Kakistocratic [sic] Moron’s possible firing of the arboreal Keebler, cookie-fudge-packing elfin Attorney General Jeff Sessions to put a Trumpian AG in position to lessen the effectiveness of the Mueller investigation.


Our country is a nation of laws. We are a cerebral nation. Do you think that Robert Mueller hasn’t prepared for anything that the moronic usurper of our nation’s highest public office can mentally discern? DJ is an unwitting Russian conspirator ignorantly cracking the foundation of our Democracy in favor of oligarchic authoritarianism ineffectively disguised as a Christian theocracy bent on incarcerating nonviolent criminals and poor women who make decisions that affect nothing else but their own bodies and the ignorant sensibilities of people who claim a moral superiority even when their life-choices have demonstrated a “do as I say and not as I do” hypocrisy by dexterously manipulating a lucrative, for-profit prison system. Trump is a buffoonish charlatan who is mentally incapable of executing simple cognitive minutia. He does not possess the mental adroitness to maintain, even peripherally, the strongest economy on the planet. 


DJ “little fingers” (can you say brachydactylic?) couldn’t even get a monetary advancement from loaning institutions based in New York City… arguably the center of the global economy; instead, Dumpty Trumpty had to obtain financial resources through Russian oligarchs whose only loyalty is with cupidity. 

Robert Mueller and his team of lawyers with arcane specialties are the smartest creatures on the planet. These are the cats, women and men, who opine their loyalty to the Constitution as sacrosanct? It is their religion. These cats are the governmental employees that I, with a comparably insignificant mental acuity, make fun of for their fierce loyalty and insouciance towards the kind of excessive appanage that has become so ubiquitous in local, regional, and national politics much more predominantly since the unconscionable Citizens United Supreme Court ruling that encourages some nefarious billionaire businessmen [intentional gender selection] to eliminate governmental regulations meant to protect the working class from exploitation! Do you really think that Donald Trump can outsmart Mueller’s A-Team?

Peace Through Music

Women's Global March for Dignity
It’s Fall, finally, and college football is entering the seasonal phase wherein supporters are aggressively asserting the undeniable acclamation that their team is destined, possibly through divine intervention, to experience the most successful, beer-binging season in their team’s history (as if God is more concerned that the University of Alabama totally annihilates a community college from Iowa instead of deigning empathy for the Puerto Ricans who still have no electricity over a year after hurricane Maria devastated their lands)… and these fans are passionate. 

There is a cute advertisement that is ubiquitously viewed during this year’s collegiate exploitation of athletic prowess; it portrays a college-football-loving family’s “intervention.” The parents address concerns about their son’s capricious interest in soccer, a gateway sport that may lead to an exploration of lacrosse. The mother then confesses that she’s tried other sodas instead of the soda promoted by the advertisement. Both father and son react incredulously. The woman stands against the two men; it’s a sign of the times… an example of our current cultural zeitgeist. It is this kind of subtle propaganda that is nurturing the churning emotional turmoil that is a reaction against the supplication of women; although, the subtlety is broiling into a movement that will soon witness major political and economic changes in the status quo.

Peace Through Music

Humanity Is Not Sacrosanct; We Are Mammals
Change is in the air. (Probably the most tacit opening sentence I’ve written since the second grade.) Autumn’s breath possesses far less thermonuclear intensity than the estival simooms that braised my visceral organs during the quotidian influence of canine lassitude (the dog days of summer), and the planet is celebrating relief from the waning deliquescent solar saturation that was so intense that it even totally drained the indefatigable energy of the Capitalistic idolizing, percussion aggrandizing, battery-operated, Ray-ban donning pink bunny that stoically celebrates the ennui of privileged society with the pulsing hypnotic repetition of soporific poetic meter exclusively dominated by the downbeat—the second sentence of the paragraph, although slightly more sesquipedalian. 

The planet celebrates.

There exists within our species’ terrene milieu a dominate factional collective yet global mindset in the quasi-deification of the human condition: the tribal puerile belief that humanity (hu-woman-ity) is the nexus between an ultimate, genderless, omnipotent, omniscient puissance and the Universe (as if mankind were just below God in jurisdiction, the carbon-based terrestrial authority that is capable of influencing intergalactic policies). Then Kavanaugh is formally inducted into the Supreme Court with the gaudiness of a 16th century French provincial courtesan. Do you really believe that Bret Kavanaugh, or any human, is just under God in the hierarchy of the Universe… that humanity can litigate morality on any other planet in our meager solar system? Our galaxy? Or the billions of other galaxies?


Peace Through Music

My Journal Entry from October 22
At this moment in time, I feel great. I’ve got three gigs later this week plus Tuesday’s jam, so I’ll be publicly singing four days: Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, and this excites me as much as the baby who cried out in delight while I was singing at Carriage and Horses restaurant last Saturday. However, [name withheld], my nurse (whom I increasingly adore), just left; although, she will be returning in a few hours. My blood pressure is dangerously high. This would be scary if I were afraid to die, but alas, I am not.

[Name withheld] looked worried, which makes me ashamedly proud. The fact is… she really likes me. Not in any lurid way; she simply likes me… a lot. And I like her. I mean really like her. She actually thrills me. I really like being near her, having her touch me, the way she looks at me adoringly as I look at her. Honestly. Sincerely. With agape. I have only felt this kind of intense love for one other person: [Name withheld]. This has me worried… a little.

[Name withheld] is coming back! Which ain’t normal.

Until last year, I’ve been really healthy. I strongly believe without any evidence to corroborate that my terrestrial longevity has baffled a few medical professionals as well as, very probably, family and friends; however, ever since last year’s renal sepsis, I have been experiencing the fulgurating atrophy of my carbonic temporality. I am even wondering if I will finish writing this particular entry into my journal, but, again, I am not distressed. I am literally living in each moment, which is cool. I realize that once I shuffle off this mortal coil that my ethereal self will escape with the speed of light.

I don’t really care if it’s true or not, but I recall hearing that Einstein envisioned looking at a clock and watching its second hand’s ticking. He then envisioned moving away from that clock at the speed of light. The clock, in relation to his motion, would remain in the same position as long as Albert moves away in a uniform direction. When my post-terrestrial existence ceases, my resurrection at the speed of light will manifest, which sounds intriguing… not scary.

I’m not trying to imply that my death will be soon; I am motivated to initiate more urgency in eating more healthily and to learn more about my diabetes because I would like to experience a bit more of this life. I am enjoying it, even though folks who know me may think that I am the stereotypical angry old lifelong bachelor who never loved anyone but himself and is lashing out against the government, an angry Independent who is enraged because Donald Trump is president. The hilarious aspect of this farcical assertion is that I don’t care. Regardless if I die today or not, I have less years left than I have spent living. So, no one may ask, why do I “waste” what little time I have rebuking a presidential administration I feel is illegitimate?

I currently have nothing to do and all day to do it. I am also fortunate enough to live with my aging parents in a symbiotic relationship; we’re keeping each other alive. Be that as it may, I am also fortunate enough to have access to FreeSpeech TV, the only 24-hour progressive news medium of which I am aware, and I’ve been watching it for a while now. FreeSpeech TV is funded exclusively by donors, but unlike other news media, including PBS, FreeSpeech accepts no contributions from corporations and they do not air commercials. Their news covers stories shunned by other news programming that fear lost revenue for bad publicity like that of oil spills, train derailments that emit deadly gases into a neighborhood, native American suppression, stories about the abhorrent separation of immigrant families, etc. It is through this effort as well as from reading Malcolm Nance’s book about Russia’s interference with the 2016 presidential election that I am beyond certain that not only is Donald Trump—his family, and the majority of the GOP—paradigms of embarrassing ineptitude, they are all feloniously criminal. 

The Robert Mueller investigation, I strongly believe, will disclose felonious malfeasance that will be go back, at least, to George W[ar Criminal] Bush but, hopefully, back to Nixon and will bring major historical corrections concerning supreme court justices and election fraud before our last election. I also believe that we are in the incipience of a major social, political, and economic revolution, that the current governing format will morph into something more equitable, and that the GOP will be irrevocably destroyed… or re-branded; although… 

The GOP may very well retain the majority in the Senate and maybe even the House, but they will have won through cheating, i.e. voter suppression, gerrymandering, and lying; their victory will be short lived. The old order is dying out and will soon be replaced by a younger generation that has lived through, among other international embarrassments, the failure of the “trickle down” exploitation… and the Southern Strategy will be exposed. My original intention of posting to facebook the more progressive rhetoric the delineates the values of American ideology that I find emulous is so that my favorite aunt, who told me directly that she got her news exclusively through Fox Pravda, would at least be exposed to the truth and, hopefully, be ashamed for following specious superfluity. Donald Trump and his ilk are bullies, racists, and sexist bigots who are followed by like-minded philistines and ignorance. I may have approached it wrongly, but I was trying to help my kin avoid the shame and embarrassment that they will feel when the truth about Trump’s administration and the GOP’s nefarious intentions are revealed by the Mueller investigation. Like the German citizens who sat idly during Hitler’s reign of terror, my aunt and the other followers of Trump will realize their ignorance, but it will be too late.

Peace Through Music
  • am·bage (²m“b¹j) n. Archaic. 1. Often ambages. Ambiguity. 2. ambages. Winding ways or indirect proceedings. [Back-formation from Middle English ambages, equivocation, from Latin amb³ges : ambi-, around; see AMBI- + agere, to drive; see ag- below.] --am·ba“gious (²m-b³“j…s) adj.
  • an·a·bat·ic (²n”…-b²t“¹k) adj. Of or relating to rising wind currents. [Greek anabatikos, skilled in mounting, from anabainein, to rise. See ANABAENA.]
  • bo·re·al (bôr“¶-…l, b½r“-) adj. 1. Of or relating to the north; northern. 2. Of or concerning the north wind. 3. Boreal. Of or relating to the forest areas of the northern North Temperate Zone, dominated by coniferous trees such as spruce, fir, and pine. [Middle English, from Late Latin Bore³lis, from Latin Bore³s, Boreas. See BOREAS.]
  • Chi·nook (sh¹-n‹k“, ch¹-) n., pl. Chinook or Chi·nooks. 1.a. A Native American people formerly inhabiting the lower Columbia River valley and adjoining coastal regions of Washington and Oregon, now located in western Washington. The Chinook traded widely throughout the Pacific Northwest. b. A member of this people. c. The Chinookan language of the Chinook. 2.a. Any of various Chinookan-speaking peoples formerly inhabiting the Columbia River valley eastward to The Dalles and now located in southern Washington and northern Oregon. b. A member of any of these peoples. 3. chinook.a. A moist, warm wind blowing from the sea on the northwest U.S. coast. b. A warm, dry wind that descends from the eastern slopes of the Rocky Mountains, causing a rapid rise in temperature. [Chehalis (Salishan) c'inuk.]
  • e·o·li·an also ae·o·li·an (¶-½“l¶-…n, ¶-½l“y…n) adj. Relating to, caused by, or carried by the wind. [From Aeolus.]
  • fa·vo·ni·an (f…-v½“n¶-…n) adj. 1. Of or relating to the west wind. 2. Mild; benign. [Latin Fav½ni³nus, from Fav½nius, the west wind.]
  • fla·gi·tious (fl…-j¹sh“…s) adj. 1. Characterized by extremely brutal or cruel crimes; vicious. 2. Infamous; scandalous: “That remorseless government persisted in its flagitious project” (Robert Southey). [Middle English flagicious, wicked, from Latin fl³giti½sus, from fl³gitium, shameful act, protest, from fl³git³re, to importune, to demand vehemently.] --fla·gi“tious·ly adv. --fla·gi“tious·ness n.
  • kham·sin (k²m-s¶n“) n. A generally southerly hot wind from the Sahara that blows across Egypt from late March to early May. [Arabic (rº¡ al-)hamsºn, (wind of the) 50 (days), khamsin, from hams¿n, 50.]
  • mar·ces·cent (mär-sµs“…nt) adj. Botany. Withering but not falling off, as a blossom that persists on a twig after flowering. [Latin marc¶sc¶ns, marc¶scent-, past participle of marc¶scere, inchoative of marc¶re, to wither.]
  • pic·a·resque (p¹k”…-rµsk“, p¶”k…-) adj. 1. Of or involving clever rogues or adventurers. 2. Of or relating to a genre of prose fiction that originated in Spain and depicts in realistic detail the adventures of a roguish hero, often with satiric or humorous effects. --pic·a·resque n. One that is picaresque. [French, from Spanish picaresco, from pícaro, picaro. See PICARO.]
  • ple·o·nasm (pl¶“…-n²z”…m) n. 1.a. The use of more words than are required to express an idea; redundancy. b. An instance of pleonasm. 2. A superfluous word or phrase. [Late Latin pleonasmus, from Greek pleonasmos, from pleonazein, to be excessive, from ple½n, more. See pel…-1 below.] --ple”o·nas“tic (-n²s“t¹k) adj. --ple”o·nas“ti·cal·ly adv.
  • sen·ten·tia (sµn-tµn“sh…, -sh¶-…) n., pl. sen·ten·ti·ae (-sh¶-¶”). An adage or aphorism. [Latin. See SENTENCE.]
  • si·moom (s¹-m›m“) also si·moon (-m›n“) --n. A strong, hot, sand-laden wind of the Sahara and Arabian deserts: “Stephen's heart had withered up like a flower of the desert that feels the simoom coming from afar” (James Joyce). Also called samiel. [Arabic sam¿m, poisonous, simoom, from samma, to poison, from Aramaic samm³, drug, poison.]
  • si·roc·co (s…-r¼k“½) also sci·roc·co (sh…-, s…-) --n., pl. si·roc·cos. 1. A hot, humid south or southeast wind of southern Italy, Sicily, and the Mediterranean islands, originating in the Sahara Desert as a dry, dusty wind but becoming moist as it passes over the Mediterranean. 2. A hot or warm southerly wind, especially one moving toward a low barometric pressure center. [Italian scirocco, from Arabic šarq, east.]
  • so·te·ri·ol·o·gy (s½-tîr”¶-¼l“…-j¶) n. The theological doctrine of salvation as effected by Jesus. [Greek s½t¶rion, deliverance (from s½t¶r, savior, from saos, s½s, safe; see teu…- below) + -logy.] --so·te”ri·o·log“ic (-…-l¼j“¹k) or so·te”ri·o·log“i·cal (-¹-k…l) adj.
  • ter·giv·er·sate (t…r-j¹v“…r-s³t”, tûr“j¹-v…r-) intr.v. ter·giv·er·sat·ed, ter·giv·er·sat·ing, ter·giv·er·sates. 1. To use evasions or ambiguities; equivocate. 2. To change sides; apostatize. [Latin tergivers³rº, tergivers³t- : tergum, the back + vers³re, to turn; see wer-2 below.] --ter”gi·ver·sa“tion n. --ter“gi·ver·sa”tor (-s³”t…r) n.
  • To·phet (t½“fµt”, -f¹t) n. 1. Judaism. The underworld where wicked souls suffer torment after death. 2. An extremely unpleasant or painful condition or place. [Middle English, from Hebrew t½pet, a place where children were burned.]
  • zeph·yr (zµf“…r) n. 1. The west wind. 2. A gentle breeze. 3. Any of various soft, light fabrics, yarns, or garments. 4. Something that is airy, insubstantial, or passing. [Middle English Zephirus, Zephyrus, from Latin Zephyrus, from Greek Zephuros.]

Bad Jokes of the Week

  • Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana.
  • Show me a piano falling down a mine shaft, and I'll show you A-flat minor.
  • In democracy it's your vote that counts. In feudalism it's your count that votes.
  • If you don't pay your exorcist you get repossessed.

Apothegmatic Axioms of the Month

Caveat: These aphoristic tweets may seem redundant because I have already posted many to facebook, but in my defense: I write essays throughout the month prior to their posting. This month’s publication will be near the mid-term election, and I felt it imperative to voice my opposition to the status quo in real time. The reason I am reprinting them is so you, my dear reader, have time to ruminate their content:

Unintentional Green Privilege: I recently watched a television commercial that advertised American Express’s allowing their cardholding members an opportunity to spread payments of major purchases into monthly installments that charge no additional interest, which is, by definition, an interest-free loan… exclusively for the rich people who have the history of credit that cardholding membership requires. This is simply another opportunity offered to people who already possess the “green” privilege of wealth hoarding… while “Penury” must slink into an Auto Loan institution (that is very often controlled by the largest and most callous banking powerhouses) where they must collateralize their car for a loan with unconscionable interest rates simply because they don’t deserve the interest-free loan.

I am a writer, a word-smithy, and as such I search for words. Recently I was searching for the adjectival form of the noun ‘insect’, which is insectival… not insectual [sic], which sounds like two ladybugs’ engaging in consensual coitus that must be confusing when trying to determine gender... which is about as confusing as an atheistic praying mantis.

Hillary Clinton was right; Trump Supporters are deplorable! (CAVEAT: I am NOT referring to people who support Trump’s policies; I am, however, calling everyone who finds Trump emulous, a deplorable collection of sentient carbon with indiscernible sagacity (or sapience… I can’t decide which word I prefer). I still can’t understand how anybody can adhere to Jesus’ teachings of peace and love yet simultaneously encourage Trump’s hatred for anything that doesn’t negatively affect the illusory fantasy about his being excessively wealthy and intelligent… which he so obviously isn’t.)

When I step back and look at the planet from a lunar point of view, objectively, allowing my emotion to dissipate from my corporeality, I wonder why the Russians, and others, chose to help Donald Trump and the GOP to control the government instead of the opposing political party.

Here’s an idea: perfect electric cars and make Saudi Arabia internationally insignificant.

The jejune Chevy Chase/Pee Wee Herman-like boast to a journalist that “I am the president… and you’re not” has got to be unbearably humiliating to any adult who has, for whatever reason, supported Brachydactylic DJ “Little Fingers” Trump. It sounds uncomfortably similar to having encouraged a rapist to gain a lifetime seat on the Supreme Court or to have voted into power a president bent on destroying families of human children born in a different country or that same president’s boasting on video that he can pillage pudendal treasures with impunity or the same president’s indifference to Dr. Christine Blasey Ford’s testimony that Supreme Court Justice Bret Kavanaugh attempted to rape her while impaired with bibulously lethean “boys will be boys” justification that was effective even though the doctor’s testimony was “compelling” simply because Trump’s team “won” at the cost of morality or that same president’s claiming that Nazis are “decent people” or that same president’s being a business genius with a “stable mind” who uses “the best words… I know the best words” yet still managed to bankrupt a casino or the same president’s wanting to copulate with his daughter who lavishes his attention like a child’s sucking savagely on a cherry-flavored lollipop or the same president who, as a civilian, refused housing to Afro-Americans or the same president’s condemnation of Afro-American youth for the rape of a Central Park jogger, an accusation that has been exculpated by forensic DNA methodology or the same president’s insistence that an Afro-American president was illegitimately elected because he wasn’t born a U.S. citizen even when his birth certificate confirmed that he was born in the U.S. state of Hawaii (the 50th state to be admitted into the union; ergo, Hawaii 5-0!) or the same president’s rejection of climate change or the same president’s encouragement of murdering journalists who write truthfully about amoral governmental corruption or the same president’s excessive sexual depravity or the same president’s political party who uses voter suppression and gerrymandering and the electoral college to negatively affect the ideal of “one person/one vote,” the foundation of our democratic/republic that is our nation’s governing principle, the political cult who cheats to win because if EVERY eligible U.S. citizen were to vote, the GOP would be as ineffective as the Communist Party was during the Cold War but has recently helped Trump usurp the presidency. (Robert Mueller and Malcolm Nance already know…) I actually feel empathy for Trump Supporters. When they die, they will be alone, as we all will be, facing eternal judgment. My advice: get your justifications ready for the ultimate Supreme Court magistrate… the lawyer who can get you “all the compensation you deserve” will not help you ameliorate the severity of your eternal condemnation. The fact that you voted to end abortion won’t affect your blindness to all the other egregious atrocities you actually voted for. P.S. – I already know that I am going to hell, but that’s my problem; your feigned concern for my personal eternal damnation is as sincere as your overtly public pro-life mantra that totally obfuscates your denial of life through the political destruction of Welfare, Medicare, Medicaid, affordable healthcare, and free education. Obviously, Hell will be crowded.

hypocrite (noun): Anybody who supports Trump’s indifference to Saudi Arabia’s murder of a Wall Street journalist but who plangently decried outrage at Hillary Clinton’s actions in Benghazi.

I am NOT a member of the Democratic Party; I am an Independent in favor of human decency who strongly believes that the GOP since Nixon has used #SouthernStrategy to incite racially motivated militarism.

Are liberals (or libtards, as I’ve been called on more than a few occasions) querulous snowflakes or an angry mob hell bent to destroy the Caucasian male, pasty white and flaky? I would say to the GOP: “pick one lane,” but they meander nearly as often as Bret Kavanaugh’s oration after too many beers… which he likes… a lot… sometimes he drinks too much; sometimes other people do. He likes beer… he likes beer…

I want to go back in time to tell my much-too-naive self that the Beatles’ tune “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds” is an ode to LSD. Read the lyrics. It’s as obvious as Bret Kavanaugh’s GOP-sanctioned sexual exploitation or the overt hypocrisy of Mitch McConnell or the fact that the Russians interfered with our nation’s 2016 presidential election or that Donald Trump has the business acumen of me, which is less than zero; although, in my defense, my ignorance of business, or economics in general, exists exclusively because of my apathy; his ignorance exists exclusively because he is ignorant.

It must really piss off the Trump Supporter—the servile, self-seeking flatter who is desperate to ensconce the discomfiting anxiety that has insidiously encroached her cognitive understanding that she has failed to achieve the expected elitist social status she deserves simply because of her sybaritic placental address—it must piss off the sycophant that Trump so easily succumbs to the disgusting carnal exploitation of the #SouthernStratagy that has been adopted by the GOP since Nixon and that only found a case of consensual fellatio when the Whitewater investigation couldn’t disclose the assumed pecuniary malfeasance that quickened the investigation into Bill Clinton’s business practices, but the investigation into Bret Kavanaugh’s unconscionable sexual exploitation (that parallels the carnal deprivation of Trump, O’Riley, Jim Bakkker, etc.) somehow culminated in his “societal devastation.”

It’s got to be beyond embarrassing for any person, especially a woman, to have been a staunch (although ignorant) supporter of Bret Kavanaugh… to have been a sponsor of a supreme court justice who thrust his unadorned genitalia into the face of an ingénue, grinding his exhilarating autoerotic scrotal intentions into the frightened, traumatized face of distaff muliebrity—an extreme satanic lusting urge to mockingly laugh at the breath-arresting, smothering muffled total annihilation of innocence… to have this disgusting near paragon of inhumanity judge others for their moral delinquencies.

For Halloween this year, I will dress up as the most frightening fictional character ever, especially to the easily frightened GOP candidate: one of the illusory Immigrants who votes illegally.

If you agree with the president’s handling of the unconscionable torture and brutal murder of a Washington Post reporter, then please stop identifying yourself a Pro-Lifer.

Just watched the remake of The Magnificent Seven starring Denzel Washington. There’s a dark scene in the movie wherein the antagonist uses a Gatlin Gun to decimate the town. In the church’s basement, frightened women and children listen to the devastation, and a baby cries for his papa. At that moment, I couldn’t help but think of the babies of the people who are trying to come from violent South American countries who are being ripped from their mothers. Was it the Sermon on the Mount or some other biblical verse that stated: Suffer the children onto me that I may separate them from their mothers… or Blessed are the meek for they shall be trampled onto death for a multi-million dollar trade’s deal?

Proposed National Holiday: November 6, 2018 – The Blue-Hued Tsunamic Bastille Day of Bourgeois Victory for U.S. Democracy… AKA Election Day when the citizens of the United States of America. saved Democracy.

The 2nd Ammendment demands that I be allowed to own a nuclear weapon. I, similarly, should be allowed to drive a Formula One race care at top speed through a school zone… or a tank. It is MY right as a ‘Merikkkan citizen.
—DAPOS (pronounced Dapp-ohz)

Groovy Upcoming Events
  • Saturday, November 3 at Spivey Hall on the campus of Clayton State University in Morrow, GA, violinist Regina Carter will perform starting at 7:30 pm. Fo' mo' info, click here.
  • Saturday, November 3 at City Winery in Atlanta, Kandace Springs will perform beginning at 8 pm. Fo' mo' info, click here to access her webpage.
  • Thursday, November 8 at Venkman's in Atlanta, trumpetist Jennifer Hartswick will perform beginning at 8 pm. Fo' mo' info 'bout Miss Jennifer, visit her facebook page by clicking here.
  • Saturday, November 10 at Venkman's in Atlanta, the Bonaventure Quartet will perform beginning at 8 pm. Fo' mo' info, visit the jazz group's website by clicking here.
  • Sunday, November 11 at Venkman's in Atlanta for their Bottomless Mimosa Brunch starting at 12:30 pm, Shakta Jazz Trio will perform. Fo' mo' info, click here.
  • Saturday, November 17 at Venkman's in Atalanta, Blair Crimmins and the Hookers will be performing beginning at 9:30 pm. Fo' mo' info about the band, visit their website by clicking here.
  • Saturday, November 17 at Red Light Cafe in Atlanta, guitarist Charlie Hunter will perform beginning at 7 pm. Fo' mo' info, visit Charlie's website by clicking here.
  • Sunday, November 18 at Venkman's in Atlanta for their Bottomless Mimosa Brunch srating at 12:30 pm, the SoPo Playboys will be playing. Fo' mo' info, click here.
  • Friday, November 30 at Cobb Energy Performing Arts Center in Atlanta, Dave Koz Christmas will perform beginning at 8 pm. Fo' mo' info 'bout Mr. Koz, visit his website by clicking here.
  • Friday, November 30 at Atlanta Symphony Hall beginning at 8 pm, Bobby McFerrin will perform. Fo' mo' info 'bout Mr. Bobby, visit his website by clicking here.
  • Tuesday, December 4 at Variety Playhouse in Atlanta, Robert Cray will perform beginning at 8 pm. Fo' mo' info 'bout Mr. Robert, visit his website by clicking here.
  • Thursday December 6 at Center Stage Theater in Atlanta, Robert Glasper will perform beginning at 8 pm. Fo' mo' info 'bout Mr. Robert, visit his website by clicking here.
  • Monday, December 10 at Atlanta Symphony Hall, Wynton Marsalis will perform. Fo' mo' info 'bout Mr. Wynton, visit his website by clicking here.
  • Saturday, December 15 starting at 7:30 pm ET at the amazing RiverCenter in historic downtown Columbus, Georgia, the MCoE Holiday Concert will be presented. For over 50 years, the Maneuver Center of Excellence Band has taken great pride in entertaining the soldiers, military families, and civilians of the Fort Benning, Columbus, and Phenix City communities. The Band’s performances create esprit de corps among soldiers and veterans, as well as provide patriotic spirit within the civilian community. Currently, the MCoE Band, with its eight performing groups, accomplishes over 500 military missions a year in support of the military and civilian communities in and around Fort Benning. Fo' mo' info, click here.
  • Monday, December 17 starting at 7:30 pm at the amazing RiverCenter in historic downtown Columbus, Georgia, Mannheim Steamroller Christmas will be in town. I know it ain't jazz, but I really dig Chip Davis' musical prowess. According to the venue's website: "Mannheim Steamroller Christmas by Chip Davis has been America’s favorite holiday tradition for over 30 years! Grammy Award winner Chip Davis has created a show that features Mannheim Steamroller Christmas classics along with a selection of compositions from Chip’s groundbreaking Fresh Aire series, which introduced the distinctive Mannheim sound to all of America. Experience the magic as the spirit of the season comes alive with dazzling multimedia effects and the signature sound of Mannheim Steamroller!" Fo' mo' info, click here.
  • Saturday, January 19, 2019 starting at 7:30 pm ET at the amazing RiverCenter in historic downtown Columbus, Georgia, Kenny Brawner will channel the spirit of Ray Charles. According to the venue's website: "This concert/theatre work brings the music and the story of the great Ray Charles to vivid life! Portraying Ray, master pianist/vocalist Kenny Brawner leads his 12-piece orchestra and three sultry vocalists (a la the Raelettes) performing this American legend’s most popular hits: “What’d I Say?,” “I Got a Woman,” “Mess Around,” “Georgia On My Mind,” a blazing hot duet on “Baby It’s Cold Outside,” and many more! The music is interwoven with monologues depicting how gospel, blues, jazz and country influenced Ray’s style, while also reflecting on American social history, his epic battle with drugs, and his triumphant return home to Georgia." Fo' mo' info, click here.
  • Saturday, May 18th starting at 7:30 pm ET at the amazing RiverCenter in historic downtown Columbus, Georgia, Cantus Columbus will perform Say It With Music: The Songs of Irving Berlin. From the venue's website: "In this fourth concert homage to the founders of the American Songbook, the professional chorus Cantus Columbus and the distinguished string quartet Vega Quartet, directed by William J. Bullock, present tasteful arrangements of the songs of Irving Berlin (1888–1989). The concert follows previous collaborative tributes to Cole Porter, Rodgers & Hart, George & Ira Gershwin, and Jerome Kern." Fo' mo' info, click here.

A Little Lunch Music
Jule Collins Smith Museum of Fine Arts
Auburn, Alabama

On Thursdays at Noon, make a lunch date with the finest musicians from our region and beyond. A Little Lunch Music is an informal, come-and-go performance presented by JCSM and coordinated by Patrick McCurry. It features national and international performers as well as professionals and students from Auburn University and the surrounding areas. You can sit in and listen to the entire performance, dine in the Museum Cafe from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., browse the Museum Shop, or explore the galleries.

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  • Thursday, August 23 from noon 'til one pm CT, A Little Lunch Music features Boyun Kim. Experience captivating live music and inspiring performances in the context of the museum's collection and exhibitions. The auditorium and iconic grand gallery provide settings for an extensive array of national and international performers as well as the region's professionals and students. On Thursday, August 23, from noon to 1:00 p.m. in the Grand Gallery, the series will present a free concert by gayageum player Boyun Kim. The gayageum is a traditional Korean stringed instrument. The program will feature music by Byeong-ho Kim, Seong-cheon Lee, Yu-dong Ko, Geon-yong Lee as well as traditional and popular music from Korea, France, and the US. A gift from Friends of the Series has helped to make this performance possible.
  • Thursday, August 30 from noon 'til one pm CT, A Little Lunch Music features pianist Mary Staton. Experience captivating live music and inspiring performances in the context of the museum's collection and exhibitions. The auditorium and iconic grand gallery provide settings for an extensive array of national and international performers as well as the region's professionals and students. Pianist Mary Slaton will perform August 30. Her specialty is playing lush arrangements of standards and popular songs from most of the 20th century.
  • Thursday, September 13 from noon 'til one pm CT, A Little Lunch Music features pianist Vadim Serebryany. Experience captivating live music and inspiring performances in the context of the museum's collection and exhibitions. The auditorium and iconic grand gallery provide settings for an extensive array of national and international performers as well as the region's professionals and students. Pianist Vadim Serebryany, on the music faculty at Ithaca College in New York and formerly with Huntingdon College, will return to the series to perform on September 13. He will perform music from the canon of classical piano repertoire. A Little Lunch Music is free and open to the public. Guests are invited to enjoy lunch in the Museum Café before or after the performance.
  • Thursday, September 27 from noon 'til one pm CT, A Little Lunch Music features pianist David Bottoms. Experience captivating live music and inspiring performances in the context of the museum's collection and exhibitions. The auditorium and iconic grand gallery provide settings for an extensive array of national and international performers as well as the region's professionals and students. A Little Lunch Music is free and open to the public. Guests are invited to enjoy lunch in the Museum Café before or after the performance. On September 27, David Bottoms, a pianist, composer, and investment manager, will perform a tribute to the victims of 9/11. He performs the memorial program annually on September 11 for Bargemusic, a concert series in a renovated 1899 coffee barge just under the Brooklyn Bridge in New York.
  • Thursday, October 4 from noon 'til one pm CT, A Little Lunch Music features a showcase. Experience captivating live music and inspiring performances in the context of the museum's collection and exhibitions. The auditorium and iconic grand gallery provide settings for an extensive array of national and international performers as well as the region's professionals and students. On October 4, the series will become part of Showcase, the Work of Creative Scholarship. Elizabeth Benson is on the school's Department of Theatre faculty, and will present a lecture-recital of songs by Tom Cipullo. Benson will share the program with Alyssa Ross, who is faculty in the Department of English. Ross will do a poetry reading, "Women of The Harvard Observatory." Showcase: The Work of Creative Scholarship celebrates the very best creative work of Auburn University faculty and students in the fields of fine art, applied art and design, performing arts, creative writing and other related disciplines. The exhibition is on view Sept. 28 through Oct. 14.
  • Thursday, October 11 from noon 'til one pm CT, A Little Lunch Music features saxophonist Michael Pendowski. Experience captivating live music and inspiring performances in the context of the museum's collection and exhibitions. The auditorium and iconic grand gallery provide settings for an extensive array of national and international performers as well as the region's professionals and students. Auburn saxophone professor Michael Pendowski will lead a chamber music performance on October 11. His program is titled, "Jazz Influences in Classical Saxophone Music," and will involve guest artist J. P. Pendowski on piano and Auburn faculty violinist Guy Harrison. A Little Lunch Music is free and open to the public. Guests are invited to enjoy lunch in the Museum Café before or after the performance.
  • Thursday, October 18 from noon 'til one pm CT, A Little Lunch Music features Auburn Indian Music Ensemble. Experience captivating live music and inspiring performances in the context of the museum's collection and exhibitions. The auditorium and iconic grand gallery provide settings for an extensive array of national and international performers as well as the region's professionals and students. A regular installment of the series, the Auburn Indian Music Ensemble will return on October 18. The group is led by Chaitra Gururaj and combines community and student musicians as well as non-musicians, learning traditional music of India and performing on authentic Indian instruments. A Little Lunch Music is free and open to the public. Guests are invited to enjoy lunch in the Museum Café before or after the performance.
  • Thursday, October 25 from noon 'til one pm CT, A Little Lunch Music features KKR Trio. William Ransom directs the piano program at Emory University. He has appeared on the series before, and returns on October 28 with the KKR Trio to perform Ludwig van Beethoven’s Piano Trio in B-flat major, Op. 97, or “Archduke Trio.” He will be joined by violinist Helen Kim and cellist Charae Krueger.
  • Thursday, November 1 from noon 'til one pm CT, A Little Lunch Music features guest vocalists. Experience captivating live music and inspiring performances in the context of the museum's collection and exhibitions. The auditorium and iconic grand gallery provide settings for an extensive array of national and international performers as well as the region's professionals and students. On November 1, visiting faculty from Mississippi State University will perform a program of vocal music. Guest artists will be soprano Jeannette Fontaine, soprano Roza Tulyaganova, and pianist Christy Lee. A Little Lunch Music is free and open to the public. Guests are invited to enjoy lunch in the Museum Café before or after the performance.
  • Thursday, November 8 from noon 'til one pm CT, A Little Night Music features Samford University's String Quartet. The Samford University String Quartet, members of the school’s music faculty, will perform an eclectic program of traditional repertoire and new music on November 8. A Little Lunch Music is free and open to the public. Guests are invited to enjoy lunch in the Museum Café before or after the performance.
  • Thursday, November 15 from noon 'til one pm CT, A Little Lunch Music features Brazilian concert pianist Alessandra Feris performing a program of Latin American music.
  • Thursday, November 29 from noon 'til one pm CT, A Little Lunch Music features a mixed recital. On November 29, recent Auburn University graduates, soprano Jin Lee and pianist Christian McGee, will join saxophonist and Auburn University senior Nikolai Klotchkov for a mixed recital. All have performed for the series in recent years.
  • Thursday, December 6 from noon 'til one pm, A Little Lunch Music features flutist Stephanie Payne. On November 29, recent Auburn University graduates, soprano Jin Lee and pianist Christian McGee, will join saxophonist and Auburn University senior Nikolai Klotchkov for a mixed recital. All have performed for the series in recent years.

Fo' mo' info on A Little Lunch Music, click here .

It's A Quad Thing...
You Might Not Understand

I sit here… the fictional narrator of the unintentionally quixotic picaresque that you, dear reader, are currently ruminating, I am as stoned as a granite mountain, and I am writing. 


I write a lot… probably too much, but the actual pleasure of writing keeps me sane… because it’s just a game. I really dig learning new words. (You already know that I keep a glossary.) I dig the syncopated rhythms of the southern argot that pulses in my delightfully stimulated, mildly enthralled and slightly throbbing brain. Along with the rhthym, I dig choosing obscure words, but what I dig most of all is my freedom to disparage a man for whom I have no respect… with impunity… at least for now. I am also very grateful that there are a few really groovy people on this planet (and, possibly, Universally) who take the time to actually read my rhetorical superfluity. Whether or not all y’all readers think that my style is witty or humorous, it is my intention. Again, how can anybody take what I write seriously?

How indeed?

Admittedly, my rhetoric, at times, is abrasive, but that is the very reason I employ elevated language. That, in my mind, is funny… and I need me some funny. Seriously. Have you heard our president when he speaks extemporaneously? Again, I need me some funny.

It bothers me that political debate has become excessively violent. This is not the U.S.A. that anyone wants; however, we, globally, are experiencing the incipience of a major social revolution that has the people enamored with the status quo very anxious; they are backed in the corner with everything to lose, but they are impotent; they represent the waning, overtly racist, flaccid, pasty-white, hubristic and misogynistic geriatric intolerance against the inevitable progressive of social evolution that is fanning the flickering flames of indifference into the firestorm of retaliatory rage. What we are currently witnessing is the succession of patriarchal exclusion to the overwhelming popularity of matriarchal inclusion. (And these adjectives totally reject a gender bias; it is merely the difference between despotic and democratic authority, i.e. dictatorship versus egalitarian leadership.)

I’m at the point in my very particular time of life, after thirty-two years of quadriplegia, wherein I wonder each night whether or not I will awaken still bound to this terrestrial reality or if I will instantly enter into the ethereal world that travels at the speed of light. I’ve done as much as I can concerning my personal reality: I graduated from college, and I was hired and worked 16 years in corporate America making more money than I deserved—although not nearly enough needed to live as a quadriplegic who is unable to perform even the most rudimentary acts of daily living—and during these sixteen years I received a balance of $0.00 from any governmental assistance. (Had I not gained fulltime employment, the government would’ve spent a lot of money on me providing attendant care, medical bills, transportation, meals, etc for sixteen years; although, my father, at the time, had great insurance so it wasn’t the financial struggle in may have been otherwise… and therein lies a source of shame and guilt simply because I was ineffably fated to look like a Caucasian and be of relatively sound mind.)

I was Handicapped Employee of the Year in ’95 or ’96 in the city of Columbus, Georgia—was presented a plaque by Mayor Bobby Peters; I was president of the Columbus Jazz Society and am still an honorary lifetime member; I recorded a CD of jazz vocals with a few of my musical friends, three of whom have transitioned; I found the magic of jazz, which probably encouraged my terrene longevity via my singing and the accompanying serendipitous respiratory therapy (how’d you like the rhythm of that last sentence? Yup, I… am… stoned.). I’ve participated in wonderful jazz jams in my hometown of Columbus; in Atlanta; Montgomery; Auburn; and Opelika (special shout out to the weekly jazz jam at Eighth and Rail; although, every jazz jam I’ve experienced is open to acolytes of the complex genre who are encouraged by incredible musicians regardless of their individual skill level… as long as the neophyte is sincerely motivated to learn the craft up to her potential); I’ve earned the respect of incredibly valid jazz musicians for which I am, ashamedly… but not really… proud; I’ve headlined a few jazz gigs; I sang the National Anthem at many minor league baseball games, one minor league hockey game, for my high school wrestling tournament, and, once, for an Atlanta Braves major league baseball game at Turner Field (against the Los Angeles Dodgers); but I’m hopin’ to accomplish a few more things before my life’s brief candle is snuffed.

When I total up life’s highs and lows, I have to adduce that I’ve had a really groovy life, but there exists within my personal milieu a certain faction of people who think that my leaving the corporate world was the biggest mistake of my life; although, these people believe that lashing out at their neighbor’s negligent behavior will somehow mollify the less-than-admiral mistakes that they (and we all, including I) make; they seem to believe that a lucrative retirement plan and vacations in the Hamptons are valid measures of success when, at this very moment, outside my bedroom’s fenestration is a beautiful Japanese Red Maple with its foliage’s anticipating the seasonal burst of autumnal colors, and I am enveloped by loving friends and family. Let’s face it; I am one of the most vulnerable animals on the planet, yet I feel embryonically embraced. In my mind, I am the luckiest dude on this planet.

I was fired in ’08 because the corporation for which I worked intervened in the catheterization of my bladder. It’s an old story that is kindlin’ for another fireside chat, but my leaving corporate America was predestined, and here’s why…

When I was first hired, some of my family members helped me, immeasurably, which is something for which I will always be grateful, especially my cousin John whom I haven’t thanked enough. After which, I provided room and board for a young lady whom I also didn’t thank as much as I should have. As you can imagine, the attendant care I was given was hit or miss. One ran up a $2,000 bill for long distant phone calls he promised were reverse-charged to the receiver and then skipped town after withholding the bill from me. (I called the phone company to acquire about my bill and my jaw dropped when I heard the amount… had to sell stocks to pay the bill) and another attendant was arrested for bibulously calling the White House and threatening to kill president Clinton. (Although, admittedly, I am not a big fan of Clinton’s, I didn’t want him killed… he just wasn’t progressive enough for my tastes.) Plus I had fired the mentally altered attendant a few months before his meltdown… guess you never know. Although…

For every nut who has helped me, there have been numerous more roses and angels, wonderfully warm human beings who have had rough lives but who have attended to my needs with respectful dignity. Yes, I’ve known since eighth grade that I am special simply because I look Caucasian and am a male, but after I broke my neck, I was introduced to the world of the CNA, the certified nurses’ assistant. You see, the medical profession has a hierarchy. Doctors on top (male doctors on the very top), then RNs, LPNs, and the CNAs who are the untouchables, the he’p who bathes the patient, dresses the patient, cleans fecal mishaps, and who get remunerated comparably abysmally. Most of the time, CNAs are caring people with hearts of gold, and they perform their duties (their responsibilities to the highest moral judge) with a sincerity that brings a tear to my eye when I hear the ignorant and shameless belittling of CNAs, or other hardworking minorities, by hubristic and puerile superfluity, but this, too, is fodder for another fireside chat; although, I will say that this condescending mentality is why I am a progressive who wants equanimity in everything, but, again, I digress; I am, after all, stoned… 

In 1999, I was relocated to a beautiful campus along the Chattahoochee River in a shiny new, glass-mirrored building that looked like architectural perfection. It was also the year that the company for whom I worked changed insurance companies. (I used the pronoun whom because businesses are people and money is free speech)… but I digress…

The major internationally viable corporation who [sic] employed me changed insurance companies. A person in HR discovered a section in the policy that would pay me $100 a day for ten years, a sum of money which I used, every dad-burn penny of it, to pay for my attendant care, which, as you may very well imagine, greatly improved the quality of my care… but it was only extant for a decade… ten years then it was to completely disappear. (I reckon that the insurance company, who [intentional anthropomorphism] provided the policy, saw that my handicapped placard—the one that allows me to legally park in specifically designated parking spaces—has an expiration date, so they must’ve have assumed that my paralysis (due to a severed, totally irreparable spinal cord) was/is temporary… Ha!) 

Life was good, until the financial crash of ’08.

This was when some dude in HR decided to justify his superfluous employment (i.e., his manifestly destined corporate Welfare) by fastidiously focusing supercilious attention on his unadulterated sycophantic loyalty to the current interpretation of Capitalism, which staidly legislates the laughably ridiculous premise that corporations have the same rights as human beings (sans the regulatory incentive of the Death Penalty to dissuade volitive subjugation to an unimpeachable moral authority that incites the rejection of the original culpable point of contention, i.e. humans can be legally murdered for felonious malfeasance but corporations can’t die. (If I’m not mistaken, the Death Penalty is a direct affront to one of the Ten Commandments… the Ten Commandments, mind you, not the Ten Strongly Encouraged Suggestions; they are the Ten Commandments…). People still reside on Death Row while corporations never experience an institutional Death Penalty, and CEOs who are fired for controlling these murderous businesses are “punished” by being fired with severance pay of seven or more significant digits.

Contrarily, corporations are merely fined so innocuously for grave crimes… for the indirect murder of citizens—“punishments” that are ineffective deterrents for the automatous repetition of the nefarious acts of polluting the planet with volatile chemicals or the callous murder of patients via pharmaceutical companies and other callous moneymakers whose hierarchy desperately covets hoards of money or supports a minimum wage that, by definition, is the success of corporate cupidity by snuggling as closely as possible to slavery sans social rebellion, etc.—all of which connotes the disturbing realization that, correspondingly, people can be corporations that allow the downsizing of familial responsibilities to the elderly and infirmed that maximizes secular profits to the exclusion of moral incentives… assisted suicide for doddering old Aunt Tillie will then not only be legalized but anxiously anticipated… the death of elderly wisdom will soon follow, but, again, I digress…)

My point (that, admittedly, keeps meandering as haplessly as Donald Trump’s prepubescent desire for nubile pudendal treasures he is ill-equipped to satisfy… or Bret Kavanaugh’s… Mitch McConnell’s… Mike Pence… Steve Bannan’s… dad-burn! If I complete this list, it would be longer that Santa’s… or Satan’s…) is that I was fired because I have the pre-existing condition of quadriplegia. (Fodder for another fireside chat but about which I have already written so often as it should be common knowledge.)

Had I not been fired—which, in retrospect, has been the most serendipitous phenomenon of my life—the insurance policy that paid for my attendant care would have matured (ceased to exist), and I would have been making too much money to garner any additional financial support from the government (although… had I been über wealthy, I would have received, under the Trump administration, enough tax credits to not only cover my substantial health care costs but, I imagine, the health care problems of my extended family… which I wouldn’t do because, instead, I would have bought a ridiculous yacht that is so unabashedly lauded on “reality” television, the very minimum in luxury expected by a saw-bone wielding journalist-dismembering Saudi Arabian prince), and I would not have been eligible for Medicare for another decade or so (which the GOP is trying desperately to eliminate without any replacement), so what was I to do? What would you do, dear reader? I was screwed. I had nothing to lose except everything… which is what I did. I quit the rat race.

Again, I tried harder than most to live the “right way” (college, corporate job, etc.), and although I met wonderful lifelong friends by seeking and acquiring full time employment in corporate America, I put my friends and family into inconveniences simply because I did not want to be a burden on society… (Actually, I was twenty-two years old at the time, so my motivation was strictly egocentric, but my ambiguous indulgent self-promotion paints a deceptive but flattering image of myself that assuages my personal insecurities…) 

Unfortunately, the illusion of my success was merely a façade… not as grotesque as the emetic speciosity of everything involving the forty-fifth president but an ostentatious display of grandeur that simply did not exist, the kind of Midas-like appeal that excites people who lack confidence in their personal identities, the kind of desperation that clings to a demagogue the way an eight-year old boy clutches his cherished teddy bear, the kind of people who believe that a beneficent member of royalty will bestow a kiss upon their eager cheeks and transform their lackluster reality into a idyllic phantasmagoria. 

I was fired and had to move back home… a forty-year old never-been-married bachelor with no progeny, forced by circumstances to return to my parents who were finally preparing to enter into the autumn of their lives. But let’s not dwell on the negative, especially concerning a retro pot-smoking hippie with the charm of Satan and an angelic baritone vocal timbre that makes cherubs weep, a pun-loving jester with an excessive writing style that very few readers even condone. Let’s not concern ourselves with the possibility that I, a man with a pretentious, self-gratifying arrogance, I felt like the lowest form of putrescent whale shit insidiously decomposing in the basement of the Marianas Trench because I was grateful to be released from the self-imposed incarceration of corporate largess… volitionally… against a socio-economic system that facilitates the mystagogic advancement of a very specific yet insignificant minority of humanity who look down so haughtily from their gilded thrones of privilege. And yet, the presumptive, overbearing amour-proper from people with questionable motivation hadn’t even reached its crescendo; In order to acquire Medicare, hospice, and the opportunity to be put on a waiting list for Medicaid (that the GOP callously rejected in the state of Georgia simply because a black man implemented it) and Meals on Wheels. Oh, it was at that point that their hubris of my antagonists turned into active disdain.

It tickles me—more easily than the risible, overly sensitive, excessively grinning bright red moppet Elmo of Sesame Street fame—when rhetorical adversaries to my punditry question my motivations for highlighting the more ignorant and nefarious controversies of our nation’s current political malaise that is actively buttressing the deceptive reality of a rather insignificant minority of human chattel who controls all three governmental branches of national politics by cheating. To plagiarize Kris Kristofferson: “Freedom’s just another word for ‘nothing left to lose’,” and I now have nothing… except happiness.

In order to receive the meager attendant care that I now receive from the government I am required to own nothing… absolutely nothing. My personal withered “governmental teat” is so flaccidly decrepit I must exert serious sweat-popping energy just to simply experience a miniscule taste of mammate nourishment—not nearly enough to have any discernable benefit… In order to receive Medicare and an opportunity to apply for Medicaid and Meals on Wheels (both of the latter two for which I am now on a waiting list), I had to sell my 401K plan, lose all my savings and be irrefragably poor to receive any instrumental assistance from the government. 

The overt veracity that accompanies my personal saga is the undeniable fact that I tried to pursue the American Dream “the right way.” Against all vantage of common sense, I forwent ALL governmental assistance by actively pursuing and obtaining full time, tax-paying employment for sixteen years (during which time I received zero dollars and zero cents from the government, i.e. I did not “exploit” the taxes that I and everyone else who is not wealthy pays (taxes that I happily paid because I lived comfortably within my means and was beyond ecstatic that I earned my freedoms of speech, religion, etc, that has been the cornerstone of our Democratic-Republic… ) Of course, I had to depend excessively on family and friends, which is why I believe that if one desires the positive energy of an eclectic, diverse cultural influence, a village is needed to raise every child; otherwise, we, as a culture, are seeking Aryan perfection, which doesn’t exist.

I am a quadriplegic who is unable to perform even the most rudimentary acts of daily living, a quinquagenarian for whom healthcare costs far outweigh the economic justification for my very existence, my life. (Which should vex pro-lifers… Is my life of total dependence as worthy as a fetus’s? Of course, through their voting to exterminate Welfare and other family services or their active adversity against a livable wage, the pro-lifers prove their disdain for poor children once they’ve forsworn the comfort of embryonic security.) I forwent governmental assistance for attendant care assistance, medication, hospitalization, transportation, etc. just to propagate the über Conservative status quo, but I digress…)

The GOP for years has promoted a for-profit healthcare system that denies aid to people, like me, with pre-existing conditions. My pearl-clutching fear is that if the GOP retains power in this mid-term election, I will die. And I’m already near enough to the portal of my permanent terrestrial exodus that I wonder, each night, if the previous day was my last. I no longer fear death. I have been preparing for it, and although I really want to live… sing, write, laugh, tell the people I love how I feel, etc, I am at peace with my terrene temporality. Do you honestly believe that I give a rat’s ass what a querulous, puerile sycophant to the status quo thinks about my falsely charged fragility? Like everybody else on the planet, I believe that my salvation is the single most important concern in my life. I don’t care if or how you justify supporting an amoral human being in his doing… anything. I must worry about myself. To the GOP and their followers, I am expendable, and if you vote for GOP control of the government, regardless of ANY reason, you are voting to eliminate my terrestrial life. Do you really believe that I care what you think?

Peace Through Music 

Make Concert Stages Accessible

Peace and Love
The next time you go see a live musical group, check out the stage. Does it have a wheelchair ramp leading from the audience to the stage or are their steps? Is there a wheelchair ramp backstage? Is there handicapped parking where the performers load and unload? Chances are that the venue doesn’t provide these accommodations. It’s like this: my biggest challenge as a quadriplegic jazz vocalist is finding accessible stages on which to perform. I was once raised up to a five-foot high stage using a forklift and a wooden palette because the stage was not wheelchair accessible. Fortunately, I didn’t die. Point is that there are
few wheelchair accessible stages; otherwise, I’d sing much more often.

It’s easy to see why this isn’t a mainstream problem: there are few “physically challenged” performers, but that’s merely an excuse encouraged by indifference. We handicapped performers exist and are eager to share our dreams with fans who dig what we do. But why are we unconsciously ignored? That’s easy: Being unable to perform even the most rudimentary acts of daily living is a major downer; the wheelchair, quite frankly, is a symbol of lost hope. Let’s face it; it’s a marketing problem, and this is where you come in to save the day.

Physical handicaps are wrapped in lugubrious imagery, but not every moment of life in a wheelchair is steeped in mournful decay. Believe it or not, I laugh every day… some days more than others, but if life were perfect, I, for one, would take a bite of forbidden fruit to find some excitement from the decay of entropy (the hypothetical tendency for all matter and energy in the universe to evolve toward a state of inert uniformity). What I’m trying so desperately to connote here is the fact that having a physical challenge can, at times, be fun and inspirational. What we need is positive imagery, and here’s where I ask for a favor from you, dear reader, and it has to do with social media, more specifically, using the ubiquitous #hashtag: will you help by coming up with a #hashtag meme that has positive connotations for the handicapped and send it to me. This could be fun. Maybe I can come up with prizes for creative contributions. Regardless, this could be the beginning of a social movement that witnesses an outcry of creative energy by talented people who have difficulty overcoming the obstacles that are hidden from people who can hop out of bed running full tilt. By the way, I’ve come up with a possible #hashtag meme that might work: #FantastAbility. What do you think?

The gauntlet has been dropped. Do you accept the challenge? Please reply to this email with as many suggestions as you want, and challenge your friends as well. Let’s see if we can extend this conversation internationally. (Actually, when you send in your suggestions, include the name of your hometown city. We’ll see how far this request goes.) Let’s make the wheelchair a symbol of fun… or grace… or intelligence… or, dare I say it? Let’s make the wheelchair Sexy!

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Jazz Etiquette 
There are few absolutes in life, but this is a definite one: do not stand in front of the bandstand playing air guitar, air trumpet, air bass, or air drums. This activity irritates the musicians. It is disrespectful to both musicians and fellow listeners. It also makes the air player look like... well, there's really no need to spell this one out. Please, save those air moves for the National Air Guitar Championships held annually in Las Vegas.

In today’s society, texting is as ubiquitous as sunshine is to day. Please, do not text while watching live jazz; if you're not into the performance, leave. Along the same line, turn off the cell phone. If you are so important that you cannot miss calls, perhaps you - and everyone else in the audience – would be better served if you did not go to hear live music. If you'd get upset watching somebody else do it then it's wrong for you, too.

Try not to get up and walk out in the middle of a song. It is rude, akin to walking away from someone who is speaking directly to you. Likewise, please refrain from talking during the music. No one came out to hear about your day. More often than not, other audience members came to hear the music.

Most jazz musicians and seasoned listeners will agree that it is acceptable to clap after the solos that each musician takes. However, it is a good idea to keep this applause to an enthusiastic minimum because the next musician usually has already well begun her solo. By the time the claps and cheers fade, the audience has missed a good section of the next solo. Be a good listener. Learn to notice the interaction amongst musicians on stage. An understanding of their communication with each other will help novice listeners, and those not familiar with the song, to learn when the song has ended. Clap, cheer, whistle, or shout, after the last notes of the song are played, not during.

The most important rule of etiquette when it comes to live jazz deals with the type of common sense your grandmother believes you possess: be respectful. Other than that, have fun. Jazz is inclusive and strongly embraces peaceful harmony. It is the type of music that demands active listening to maximize the musical experience to its most positive conclusion. If you have an uncontrollable urge to get aggressively plastered, go listen to a more kitsch musical performance. Hardly anyone there will notice.

Peace Through Music

Interesting Blogs and Websites by Interesting People

  • A Blog by Dallas Smith
  • A Blog by Susan E. Mazer
  • Collaborating since 1984, Susan E. Mazer and Dallas Smith create some of the finest contemporary instrumental music available. Our compositions for harp and woodwinds merge the aesthetics of jazz, classical, and world music into an experience that feeds both the intellect and spirit. Extending beyond the boundaries of genre, our unique sound has a richness in melody, rhythm and sonority. Visit their website by clicking here.
  • Now available in more than 750 healthcare facilities in the U.S. and Asia, The C.A.R.E. Channel’s stunning nature video and original instrumental music provide a therapeutic tool for use at the patient bedside, waiting areas, and public spaces in acute care hospitals, residential care facilities, hospice/palliative care units, cancer centers, children’s hospitals, and rehabilitation centers.
  • The Rude Pundit - Proudly lowering the level of political discourse.
  • Randy Hoexter is a jazz pianist, composer and educator living in Atlanta. He is currently the Director of Education at the Atlanta Institute of Music. His recent release, “Fromage” Featuring bassist Jimmy Haslip, Drummer Dave Weckl, and the finest of Atlanta jazz musicians has been receiving rave reviews. His previous recording “Radiant” with Mike Stern, Dave Weckl and more, also received critical acclaim.
  • Jimmy Haslip  World-renowned bassist
  • Sam Skelton  Saxophone/woodwind virtuoso and educator
  • Trey Wright  Gifted guitarist and composer
  • Kit Chatham  Brilliant percussionist and drummer
  • Carl Culpepper Virtuoso guitarist and educator
  • Jazz Evangelist Great jazz blog and reviews.
  • Wonderful freelance writer Candice Dyer.

Weekly Area Jazz Jams
Eighth and Rail
Every Tuesday 7 - 10 pm CT
The Eighth and Rail in historical downtown Opelika, Alabama is the venue for a wildly groovy weekly jazz jam as hosted by the Jane Drake Jazz Band. It's a cozy celebration of life that has become a buzzing collection of jazz-loving fanatics gathered together in a coterie of peaceful, fun-loving positive energy. I am downright proud as a peacock with enhanced LED-flashing feathers to participate in the jam on a regular basis, and I really love it! Proprietor Mike Patterson makes the wonderful sushi and Miss Tiffany keeps the affable atmosphere at a lovely level of emotive satisfaction. Plus... they serve an awesome cheesecake that'll make you wanna slap yourself so hard as to tell horrific knock-knock jokes to mimes. No lie. We have really talented musicians come in from the bi-state area: Auburn, Montgomery, Tuskegee, Columbus, LaGrange, Fort Valley, et al. The jam begins at 7 pm and ends at 10 pm CT. Hopefully, I'll see you there.

Eighth and Rail

Venkman's Jazz Jam
Every Tuesday starting at 8 pm ET

Venkman's is a nightclub in Atlanta, a venue that Joe Gransden uses for his weekly jazz jam. This is where the Who's Who of the Atlanta Jazz Scene come together to dazzle us mortals. It's free and starts at 8 pm ET. Fo' mo' info, click link below. I've participated in this jam a couple of times, and I love it as well. Joe Gransden always welcomes me with a smile that will melt antarctic glaciers in the middle of winter, which, oddly enough, is during June through August... when it's so hot and humid in middle Georgia that my toenails sweat. Nevertheless, Joe's band often includes keyboardist Kenny Banks (sometimes Kevin Bales), drummer Chris Burroughs and bassist Craig Shaw, and these cats kick it. When I find the transportation, I'm going.

Red Light Cafe Jazz Jam
Every Wed at 8 pm ET

I have not been to the weekly jazz jam at Red Light Cafe, but it is hosted by the Gordon Vernick Quartet, and I am a huge fan of Gordon's, so I'm planning to go soon, and when I do... Ha! I'm very likely to get excited. Fo' mo' info, click here .

Apache Cafe in Atlanta
Every Wed at 9:00 ET
Al Smith's Midtown Jam Session @Apache Cafe!  Contemporary Jazz , Soul, R&B vocalists jam Session. Featuring live band led by keyboardist Al Smith! Vocalists are invited to sign the list and jam with the band, musicians can sit in too... a must attend! Different Dj spinning on the back patio each week! SPECIAL GUEST HOST EVERY WEEK! Doors open at 9pm and list-sign up is at 9pm. Event admission, the day of, at the door, is CASH. Fo' mo' info, click here .

Brin's Wings in Montgomery
Every Wed from 6 to 9:00 CT

Brins Wings in Montgomery presents Coleman Woodson Jr. Jazz Jam from 6-9 CDT. No cover. Fo' mo' info, click here .

La Salle Bleu Piano Bar in Montgomery
Every Wed from 6 to 9:00 CT
Jazz jam La Salle Bleu Piano Bar, 9 until, no cover. Fo' mo' info, click here .

The Suite in Columbus, GA
Every Thursday at 9:00-11:30 ET
Thursday, January 11 from 9-11:30 p, EDT Live Jazz - Big Saxy Thursday, The Chemistry Project Band starting at 9 pm at The Suite Bar and Grill .

Irish Bred Pub in Montgomery
Every Sun at 9:30-12:30 CT
Third Thursday jazz jam session at the Irish Bred Pub Montgomery, 78 Dexter Ave, Montgomery, Alabama 36104, Corner of Dexter Ave and Perry St, 3 blocks from Capitol. Fo' mo' info, click here .

1048 Club in Montgomery
Every Sun at 9:30-12:30 CT

The 1048 Cafe is in Montgomery, AL. The weekly Jazz Jam led by Sam Williams, 9 pm CDT, $5 cover. I don't really know that much about it, but the 1048 has a jazz jam every Sunday from 9ish 'til whenever. Apparently the jam draws some incredible musicians. Fo' mo' info, click here .

The Suite in Columbus, GA
Every Sun from 6:00-11:30 ET
Michael Johnson and the Silent Threat Band plays at The Suite in Columbus, GA from 6-11:30 pm ET at The Suite Bar & Grill, 5300 Sidney Simons Blvd. Fo' mo' info 'bout the band, click here .

Piccolo's Lounge, Auburn

It's not a jam, but the Piccolo lounge offers a comfortable, clubby environment. Leather club chairs, a cozy fireplace and comfy banquettes serve as a relaxing getaway. Enjoy a single malt scotch and relax and unwind from a hectic day or meet friends to hear live jazz every Friday and Saturday night, of non-home football game weekends. Fo' mo' info, click here .
Videos of the Week
@PatMetheny 's interview and moving acceptance speech as a 2018 NEA Jazz Master.
DELVISings For Autism Change Foundation presents an inside look at DELVIS live and behind the scenes
Jazz Association of Macon
We Promote Jazz in Macon
and Middle Georgia
Our purpose is to:

  • Encourage and support creation, presentation, and preservation of jazz music.
  • Support the creation of new audiences for jazz music.
  • Provide education and information about jazz.
  • Encourage young musicians to learn and appreciate jazz.
  • Develop a network among local and regional jazz advocates.
  • Increase awareness of jazz events and musicians in our community.

To read their blog, click here .

Area Musicians

Actually, this is a link to a page of my personal website, but it makes it much easier t maintain. It is a dynamic list of area musicians that will, hopefully, be continually updated until I can no longer do it. If you are a musician who is not listed or you are listed but with invalid info, please let me know, and I'll make the appropriate revisions. Thank you, and click here to visit the link.

High Museum of Art: Atlanta Jazz

Live jazz in the Robinson Atrium at the Atlanta High Museum of Art every 3rd Friday of the month. Fo' mo' info, click here .

On-line Radio

  • WCUG 88.5 Cougar Radio - Columbus State University.
  • KUNR 88.7 Reno, Nevada.
  • KNCJ 89.5 Reno, Nevado.
  • Saturday Night Jazz hosted by Scot Marshall and Dallas Smith (Columbus, GA native) - Scot and Dallas bring their rich musical experiences together in "Saturday Night Jazz" to feature music which ranges from the latest releases to jazz classics and occasional recordings by local artists, as well as announcements of upcoming local jazz events in the Reno-Tahoe area. "Saturday Night Jazz" is supported by the Reno Jazz Orchestra and For the Love of Jazz. Dallas' program airs on KUNR ( from 10pm-12am PST/1am-3am EST. The 9pm-1pm EST broadcast is on KNCJ (streaming via the kunr.orgwebsite).
  • WCLK 99.1 Atlanta's Jazz Station, Clark Atlanta University.
  • Adore Jazz - Adore Jazz makes listeners relax, feel, think and smile through listening to the finest vocal jazz.
  • WTSU 88.9 Troy State University - Ray Murray's Jazz Radio Show Saturday nights at 10 pm Central Time.
  • WVAS 90.7 Montgomery - Jazz, Blues, News, and views.

Jazz Matters @ The Wren's Project
Preserving a musical culture, tradition & Art Form
Jazz Matters , Inc., is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that believes Jazz Matters, because music matters.  Jazz is America's only original art form and this national treasure was created by African Americans.

It is our vision to Preserve a Musical Culture, Tradition & Art Form by:
  • educating & developing new audiences;
  • inspiring new Jazz artists; and
  • providing a forum for artists to perform and perfect their craft

Peace Through Music


Sorry about this month's monolithic storyletter, but it is crunch time. The mid-term elections will soon be relegated to the dustbin of History; although, it is important to point out that if things do not turn out as expected, there is a major social, economic, and political revolution chruning the motivations of discontent into incentives; the old order is dying out and will be replaced by vernal energy determined to advance a more progress and equitable social human evolution. We've lost many insignificant battles, but we will ultimately destroy the current status quo.

Peace Through Music