The Jazzonian
Jazz is Diversity. Jazz is Democracy.


From the demented mind of Rusty Taylor
Jester and Vocalist for jazz band
Southern Standard Time
A Weekly Newsletter
April 23, 2018 C.E.

A jazzonian e-newsletter published weekly unless the author is somehow incapacitated. It details the thriving 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
Eighth and Rail will be closed this week. Vacation time, baby! The first vacation in nearly seven years. I’d like to think that the staff are all going fishin’, but whatever they are doing, I hope they enjoy it to the fullest. We’ll resume the weekly jazz jam next week. See you then.

Also, I (Rusty Taylor) will be participating in the jazz jam fundraiser next Monday, April 30 at Red Light Cafe in Atlanta hosted by international vocalist Myrna Clayton for her non-profit Abel2 with a mission to enhance the Quality of Life of People with Disabilities and the Under-served by Creating Music and Arts opportunities for Employment and Enjoyment! See flyer below for more info.

Points of Interest
in this week's issue

  • Salutations
  • Groovy Upcoming Events
  • @frangeladuo
  • This Week at The Loft
  • Last Week at The Loft
  • It's A Quad Thing (You May Not Understand)
  • Lyrics of the Week
  • Video of the Week
  • Valediction
Sam Williams


To the Pit of Misery… “Dilly! Dilly!”

I got a bit sidetracked last week. What can I say? The Schwob Jazz Quintet simply blew me away, and then I got caught up in the possibility of a Jazz Hall of Fame for the Chattahoochee Valley including Ma Rainey and Blind Tom Wiggins, so I neglected to write about the fact that The Schwob Jazz Quintet has a really groovy new pianist named Steven Lukehart, whose primary instrument, by the way, is the trumpet. Steve’s digital dexterity on the ebony and ivory is nearly divine. His fingers dance across the keys with the enthusiastic control and the physically exerting abandonment of Celtic River Dance as he weaves and interweaves harmonic strands of musical notation into the weft and warp that becomes the tapestry of his spontaneous jazzonian compositions, i.e. his solos. I hope that the Schwob Jazz Quintet plays The Loft often. I could listen to their music every day.

I also forgot to mention that Sam Williams joined us two weeks ago at Eighth and Rail’s weekly jazz jam in Opelika. Sam is a musical icon of the Montgomery jazz scene, a time-honored, wizened man who still possesses a burning desire to make really good music. He, and musicians like him, the time-honored family of experienced jazz musicians, add a nostalgia to any jazz jam, filling each performing opportunity with so much titillating interest and curiosity that it cannot be delineated in detail but that once experienced becomes so noticeably a part of the musical celebration of life that, when missing, leaves a void in one’s anticipatory prerequisite for auricular enchantment.

Sam Williams and his contemporaries remind us that the struggle for jazzonian integrity by a diverse group of eclectic people has been a challenge eagerly engaged and overcome for nearly a century, and when experienced jazz musicians make a conscious effort to lift themselves from the comfort and safety of their personal sanctuaries to share their lives’ experiences in a public format… for free… their presence becomes a treasure more priceless than the combined energy from other forms of entertainment that stress visceral responses to outlandish stimuli instead of the cerebral intrigue of a multisensory musical experience. It’s the age-old conflict between urbane civility and the superfluity scavenged by crude, physiologic angst, the literary battle between any minor Shakespearean character against the less refined barbarity of Indiana Jones and his sweaty, jerky-gaited ilk; it’s the conflict that separates the people who panegyrize the Robber Barons of the Industrial Revolution from them who honor the achievements of Martin Luther King, Jr. and the peaceful revolutionaries who follow his example. I, personally, would rather hear how a musician from Montgomery spent an infinite few hours jamming with a jazzonian icon than to suffer through the false bravado of a hotel magnate’s bragging on his participation in a Muscovite orgy involving uriniferous precipitation onto a corporeal landscape. Jus’ saying…

Caution—sudden theme shift:

I didn’t think it would happen, but it did! I received $20 donation simply for me to continue creating The Jazzonian , and I thank the patron for his donation even though his name will not be revealed to protect him from further entreaties from other organizations; however, I must persist that my creating and disseminating this weekly newsletter is not a part of a charitable non-profit organization. The Jazzonian is NOT disseminated from an organization one can financially support while receiving legal tax-exempt credit. I write this newsletter because I really, really dig non-censored writing.

I’ve been told ad nauseam… ad-farquing-nauseam… that my writing style is entirely too grandiloquent, too superfluously bombastic, too over-the-top. I’ve never wanted to appeal to the least common denominator; I write primarily for me; I love writing… and I write to please me. Not exclusively, mind you. I dig that there are a few folks who dig my style, but it is secondary to how I feel about my writing in such a verbose style, the distinctive literary expression that really jazzes me on a personal level. The donation that I received is a testament that I am positively affecting at least one person… and that motivates me to be more creative.

I’m still only being charged an introductory $10/month fee to use Constant Contact to help produce this weekly e-publication, and I am exceedingly pleased with the professional-looking results. The monthly fee will increase to $20/month soon; I just don’t know when. Be that as it may, the recent donation (that is NOT a tax exempt contribution… it is a true gift for which no retribution is expected or received) pays for this month’s and next month’s newsletters. I don’t really mind paying the monthly fee to use the aforementioned application, but it is super sweet if I can use that money for something else, so I would like to send an anonymous thank you to my friend and, now, sponsor who made the monetary contribution. Of course, if anybody else would like to contribute to the continuation of this weekly news-rag, I will fain accept your donations. Admittedly, it strokes my ego in ways that seem inappropriate, and I will continue to write this newsletter until I am physically or mental unable to do so, but receiving remuneration for my literary efforts sends me on wonderful cerebral journeys as much as my singing does when the musicians and I create a nearly perfect synergy that supplements the positive energy generated throughout the universe.

Many of y’all know that I worked for sixteen years as a computer programmer in corporate America in a kind of Capitalistic indifference to a more utilitarian belief that all action should be directed toward achieving the greatest happiness for the greatest number of people. During this self-incarceration, I wrote a monthly newsletter for my department. As you may imagine, my contributions to this newsletter garnered more attention than any other writer’s. As you are currently imagining, every other essay in the monthly collection was… well, it was boring… and not just boring, but snoringly b-o-o-o-o-ring! Like the ubiquitous photos by mothers of below-average children’s celebrating mediocrity on social media… the goofy-smiling prepubescent child in cap and gown after celebrating her graduation from a substance abuse clinic. Even though my articles were read, I received numerous requests to tone down my more sesquipedalian rhetoric.

I did not.

I have been published only twice in periodicals. Neither time was I paid. Oh, I tried to submit a smack-load of writing for publication, but the professional writing industry, like the music industry, caters to appealing to lower expectations in order to receive better returns on investment. This is why my writing is so different than anything you’ll find in the mainstream. It is like jazz. I am appealing to a certain group of readers (and jazz enthusiasts) that, although small in number, are loyal adherents to the more creative expressions of love.

This is why I believe that some readers will fain contribute to the maintenance of The Jazzonian ; it appeals to loyal fans. The beauty is that the maintenance of this e-publication doesn’t cost a lot of money… only time, and I have plenty of time, I hope, so the few contributions I receive will help me break even, which is quite groovy; moreover, if I have fans of my writing who are unable to financially contribute to its continuation, their support is more than enough encouragement for me to continue doing whatever it is that I do that seems to bring a pleasant diversion to the ennui of life. Simply email me your positive comments; it costs no money. Let’s face it. I write this newsletter for reasons I am unable to effectively communicate; it’s just something I do. I already keep a journal, which is my therapy for life; if no one reads The Jazzonian , then I will stop publishing it and continue clandestinely writing in my journal.

Fortunately, the Constant Contact application keeps track of everyone who reads it. I ain’t braggin’ (OK. I am. I don’t get to brag often (I don’t do much about which to brag)), but The Jazzonian is read by some serious musicians (from Nashville, Atlanta, Montgomery, Auburn, and, obviously, my hometown of Columbus, Georgia), a local politician, retired collegiate professors, and some really groovy, progressive people that, ashamedly, make me proud. I feel like I need to up my game. Problem is that I already write like I want, there’s nothing more I can do but continue… So I will.

Peace Through Music

fain (f³n) adv. 1. Happily; gladly: “I would fain improve every opportunity to wonder and worship, as a sunflower welcomes the light” (Henry David Thoreau). 2. Archaic. Preferably; rather. --fain adj. Archaic. 1. Ready; willing. 2. Pleased; happy. 3. Obliged or required. [Middle English, from Old English fægen , joyful, glad.]
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.
Monday, April 30 at Red Light Cafe in Atlanta, Myrna Clayton is hosting a jazz jam, and I am participating. Abel2 is a non-profit organization with a mission that I, author and singer Rusty Taylor, support with the loyalty of the Myrmidons to Achilles. Basically, it is an effort to encourage and assist people with disabilities to showcase their creative talents in a public format. Click on the photo above for more info. Come and join us if you can, and donate to the cause if you're in a position to do so. If not, help us spread the word. Thanks.
Bad Joke of the Week

Why did JS Bach have so many children? Because he didn't have any organ stops
Tweets of the Week

pulchritestudinate (noun): a really attractive turtle, the opposite of Mitch McConnell.
Groovy Upcoming Events
  • Thursday, April 26, 2018 at 7:30 pm at Venkman's in Atlanta, The Atlanta Latin Jazz Orchestra. Fo' mo' info, click here.
  • Saturday, April 28 at 8 pm, Larry Harlowe's Latin Legends Band will perform at Rialto Center for the Arts in Atlanta. Larry Harlow's Latin Legends Band will fire up the Rialto stage for our closing night celebration. Larry Harlow completely revolutionized what is known today as Salsa, developing the explosive trumpet/trombone sound that has come to characterize the music. Harlow formed The Latin Legends band with the aim of educating Latino and American youth about the music's heritage and pioneering new ideas. Special guest Oscar Hernandez, bandleader/pianist of the Spanish Harlem Orchestra, was greatly influenced by Harlow. Relive the excitement of dance night at New York’s Palladium Ballroom with the Salsa music of Larry Harlow's Latin Legends Band and Oscar Hernandez as we close out the Rialto Series with passion and panache!. Fo' mo' info, click here.
  • Sunday, April 29 at 12:30 pm at Venkman's in Atlanta, the Trio Deluxe will be playing – smoky American Songbook standards and hot virtuosity from some of the best Athens/Atlanta musicians around: Andrea DeMarcus (Cicada Rhythm), Dan Coy (Bonaventure Quartet), and John Norris (lots of Athens bands). Fo' mo' info, click here.
  • Monday, April 30 at 8 pm – City Winery in Atlanta, VA Virginia Schenck & Friends ~ International Jazz Day featuring Virginia Schenck, Kevin Bales, Rodney Jordan, and Marlon Patton. Fo' mo' info, click here.
  • Saturday, May 5 Earl Smith Strand Theater in Marietta, Georgia at 8 pm the Georgia State Jazz Orchestra. Fo' mo' info, click here. An intimate evening with the GSO Jazz combo and a special guest vocalist you’re not going to believe!
  • Sunday, May 6 at 12:30 pm at Venkman's in Atlanta features Shakta Jazz Trio with Chapman and Watters. Fo' mo' infom click here.
  • Monday, May 28 at 8 pm – Big Bad Voodoo Daddy 2018 marks the 25th anniversary of Big Bad Voodoo Daddy’s remarkable arrival onto the music scene. Since it’s formation in the early nineties in Ventura, California, the band has toured virtually nonstop, performing on average over 150 shows a year, and has produced a sizable catalog of recorded music, with sales of over 2 million albums to date. Early on, during their legendary residency at the Derby nightclub in Los Angeles, they reminded the world, in the midst of the grunge era no less, that it was still cool to swing. The band, cofounded by singer Scotty Morris and drummer Kurt Sodergren, was at the forefront of the swing revival of that time, blending a vibrant fusion of the classic American sounds of jazz, swing, and dixieland, with the energy and spirit of contemporary culture. Fo' mo' info, click here.
  • Friday, June 1 7:00 PM doors / 8:00 PM show ET – An Evening with Leo Kottke at Variety Playhouse in Atlanta. Leo Kottke (born September 11, 1945) is an acoustic guitarist. He is known for a fingerpicking style that draws on blues, jazz, and folk music, and for syncopated, polyphonic melodies. He overcame a series of personal obstacles, including partial loss of hearing and a nearly career-ending bout with tendon damage in his right hand, to emerge as a widely recognized master of his instrument. He currently resides in the Minneapolis area with his family. Fo' mo' info, click here.
  • Friday, June 15 - 8:00 PM – 11:00 PM. The Wren's Nest. Experiencing Jazz - Jazz, Blues & BBQ. Style. Relax, relate, release, as we open up our 3rd Annual Jazz Matters at The Wren's Nest Concert Series. T. C. Carson, singer/actor, best known for his portrayal of Kyle Barker on the hit sitcom "Living Single" will open up our series, along with performances by The TuTuff Band, The Edwin Williams Experience & Emerging Jazz Artists and more. Tickets Available Online: For More Info, call 404-474-1211.
  • Friday, July 20, 2018 - 8:00 PM – 11:00 PM. The Wren's Nest. Experiencing Jazz: With a Little Soul, Funk & A Whole Lotta Jazz. Artist not yet available. Tickets Available Online: For More Info, call 404-474-1211.
  • Friday, August 17, 2018 - 8:00 PM – 11:00 PM. The Wren's Nest. Artist not yet available. Tickets Available Online: For More Info, call 404-474-1211.
  • Friday, September 21, 2018 - 8:00 PM – 11:00 PM. The Wren's Nest. Artist not yet available. Tickets Available Online: For More Info, call 404-474-1211.

Schwob Jazz Orchestra
under the direction of Dr. Kevin Whalen
This Week at The Loft
Columbus [GA's] Home For Jazz Music

Come early to secure your seat. Schwob Jazz Orchestra (under the direction of Dr. Kevin Whalen) will bring their seventeen band members to the Green Room adjacent to the upstairs restaurant for an evening of big sound and complex chord bopping energy. SJO is brash-brazen fun at its maximum. If you’ve heard these cats play then you already realize just how exciting this group is. They are really, really good. Really! Everybody who is anybody will be there stylin’ and profilin’, lookin’ only as they can look. I’ll see you there grinning like a furtive feline absconding with a small yellow finch in its maw. I love these musicians.

Peace Through Music

Upcoming schedule:
  • March 30, Bill Perry Quartet
  • April 6. Common Minds, This is Nick Johnson's quartet from Valdosta State Univ.
  • April 13. CSU Combos, Under the direction of Dr. Kevin Whalen
  • April 20. Greg Robbins. He is a jazz vocalist headliner from Atlanta. Kevin Bales is his pianist.
  • April. 27. The Schwob Jazz Orchestra, under the direction of Dr. Kevin Whalen
Last Week at The Loft
Columbus [GA's] Home For Jazz Music
The Greg Robbins Quintet performed last Friday, playing originals, standards, and interpretations of pop-rock tunes, and they did a wonderful job, pleasing the crowded venue of fans, some of whom journeyed from Atlanta and Rome. Greg Robbins is a vocalist with a booming basso profundo delivery that he unleashed onto the crowd with the ease of summer shade. His technique is nearly flawless; his appearance sleek, a new-car smell, tight-suited youthful eagerness that is refreshing when juxtaposed against the embarrassing butterfly-gilded speciousness of excessive glittery bejeweled music from decadent entertainers with much more style than talent, the flashy ennui that currently holds sway over the music industry.

Accompanying Greg Robbins on piano was Kevin Bales , who is one of my favorite pianists. Don Tipton gushed his lofty praise of Kevin when he introduced the band last week, and that’s groovy. Kevin is a wonderful player who has always been very nice and encouraging to me when he’s part of the house band with Joe Grandson , Craig Shaw, and Chris Burroughs at Venkman’s jazz jam nearly every Tuesday evening in Atlanta. He’s a class dude... as is Marlon Patton , the drummer for many bands, among them Matthew Kaminski’s band in the videos I sometimes post when they play live in Atlanta. Trumpeter Terence Harper played beautifully, interacting with the vocalist with sublime melodies intertwining with the vocal notes in a sinuous, graceful ballet of dulcet tones. And CSU’s very own Reginald Corbie held down the bass like a pro. All in all, listening to the Greg Robbins Quintet is a wonderful musical experience. I cant wait ‘til he gets a bit more patina, a little more life-experience. He will then explode in popularity… I guarantee. 

To purchase Greg's new CD, click the photo of the CD cover.
Comedy Duo

I don’t reckon it comes as any surprise if I were to announce that my political ideology may be effectively labeled as progressive : the religiously, economically, racially, politically, and globally diverse, gender-less acceptance of peaceful coexistence between disparate subcategories of humanity governed in such a way that the greatest amount of good is legislated for the greatest number of citizens. As a progressive dude, I find it necessary for my mental preservation that I watch FreeSpeechTV as often as possible to counteract the ignorant propaganda of Fox Commentary, the exclusive news source for the neo-confederacy of the slave-justifying South. FreeSpeechTV has a wonderful selection of progressive programming (that can also be viewed online) like the Stephanie Miller Show. It is through the Stephanie Miller Show that I found the comedy duo frangela.

Frangela is a portmanteau word combing the names of comediennes Frances Collier and Angela V. Shelton, the former from Chicago, the latter from Detroit. These comediennes are intelligent and poignant, and their humorous observations come at their listeners in a rapid, ping-pong syncopation that ebbs and flows with lunar-tide comfort, fading in then bellowing out a compositional tirade of complexity delivered in elegant simplicity so that the listeners of their comic genius wonder aloud if they are marveling at the message itself or with the deft skill with which it is delivered. I smile broadly when I listen to their weekly podcast “The Last Word,” which I get through the miracle of Amazon’s “Alexa.” I recommend that you check out their podcast through itunes or wherever one goes for podcasts. You can also catch them most Fridays on the third hour of the Stephanie Miller Show, which starts at 11 a.m. Eastern Time. Check ‘em out; although, their vernacular may tend to cross over the lines of acceptance as regulated by the FCC, but I don’t find their more libertine language obtrusive; it is part of their effective delivery. To learn more, click here to visit their website.

Peace Through Music
Make Concert Stages Accessible
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!

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

Who glows? No one glows?

Have you seen the television advertisement for a major motel chain that has the rather insipid tagline “Badda book, badda boom”? What does that even mean? It’s such a distasteful stereotype of bullying ignorance, but its being cliché doesn’t even come close to being its most annoying malfeasance… the phrase—and all the connotations associated with it—is lazy, plain and simple, but that’s what advertising is… propaganda designed to lure the viewer into disinterest in pragmatic life choices. But that also seems to be the modus operandi of the GOP as well: to use pococurantism to lure apathy into the voting populace that wins over the irrational motivation of passionately vexed proletarian convictions against governmental influence so much so that its resulting loyalty becomes cultic.

This strategy of insouciance continues in another television commercial that portrays a rather handsome conservative white businessman decrying that running government as a “business” is the answer to all our nation’s problems… as if the time-span since Reagan’s deregulation of governmental services to the present and the exploitation of non-replenishing fossil fuel resources (including within the Clinton and Obama administrations) aren’t the catalyst for the economic disparity that now exists! Business, or, more specifically, the insatiable quest for excessive wealth at the cost of community, is the catalyst for…

  • Ubiquitous fossil fuel consumption even though there has been a solar-powered vehicle parked on the surface of the moon since the early 1970s.
  • Mass incarceration for non-violent “victims of the system” because for-profit prisons exist primarily as a means to extort money for stockholders at the cost of humanely rehabilitating the prisoner.
  • Education… the proletariat and bourgeoisie should be uneducated so that they can better accept the fact that they are needed for cheap labor.
  • Education… the money needed for textbooks, computers, pencils, papers, etc. should go to the financial supporters of the educational system.
  • Euthanasia… or the killing off of grandma by sending her to for-profit nursing homes because she can no longer offer services for the enrichment of the aristocracy.
  • The lack of universal healthcare… everyone should be healthy, but if they were, then the stockholders of hospitals and pharmaceutical companies would make less money.
  • Healthcare should be a non-profitable institution.

The GOP faction of Christian conservatives—who currently (yet increasingly more tentatively) holds political sway—constantly berates social security as an “entitlement” in the political party’s ever-crass desire to privatize the social insurance that everybody pays into. (As if bankruptcy is even an option when running a government… or dealing with an elderly generation of great-grandparents as if they were worn-out—and thereby expendable—equipment subject to humiliating strategies of atrophy like selling off to for-profit nursing homes or prisons run by thugs who provide minimal necessities, like food, while pocketing the savings.) Business doesn’t solve problems; it creates them when unregulated. The GOP manta seems to be “I don’t mind if everyone has a piece of the pie as long as my piece is bigger.” It’s the “whoever dies with the most toys wins” philosophy combined with the “There will always be the poor” indifference that allows self-proclaimed christians to entirely ignore “whatsoever you do to the least of my brothers, that [is what] you do unto me” or the “love your neighbor as you love yourself” aphorisms attributed to Jesus.

Social Security is not social welfare; however, this same group of governmental aristocracy, the GOP, the millionaires and billionaires who recently voted to give the most very wealthy, including themselves, a massive pay raise, use this conditioning effect to stimulate visceral reactions against governmental programs created to help the least of Jesus’ brothers while disguising the plutocratic act of extortion as a benevolent yet premeditated social benefit of “trickle-down” largess that contrarily remains in the coffers of the mega-monolithic banks that exploit rules (they themselves created) with such flagrant audacity that penury remains a social theme of indifference as significant digits append to the annual dividends of the already ludicrously wealthy that enrich Sardanapalian lifestyles to the Caligula-like absurdity it has become merely blocks away from the fatal dearth that haunts the under-served.

Peace Through Music

po·co·cu·ran·te (p½”k½-k‹-r²n“t¶, -rän“tµ) adj. 1. Indifferent; apathetic. --po·co·cu·ran·te n. One who does not care. [Italian : poco , little; see POCO + curante , present participle of curare , to care for (from Latin c¿r³re , from c¿ra , care).] --po”co·cu·ran“tism n.

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. Fo' mo' info, click here.
  • 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. Fo' mo' info, click here.
  • 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 CandiceDyer
Weekly Area 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 .
A Little Lunch Music
at Jule Collins Smith Museum, Auburn University
On Thursdays at Noon, make a lunch date with our region’s finest musicians. A Little Lunch Music is an informal, come-and-go performance presented by JCSM and coordinated by musician Patrick McCurry. You can sit in and listen to the entire performance, dine in the Museum Cafe from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. CT, browse the Museum Shop or explore the galleries.
For more info, click here.

  • February 15 - pianist Vadim Sarabryany
  • February 22 - TBA
  • March 01 - guitarist Luther Enloe
  • March 08 - soprano Patty Holley
  • March 15 - no concert - Spring Break
  • March 22 - pianist Lawrence Quinnett
  • March 29 - Wolf and Clover
  • April 05 - soprano Noemi de Silva with pianist Beibeilin
  • April 12 - mezzo-soprano Janet Hopkins
  • April 19 - David Banks Gospel Jazz Experience
  • April 26 - Duo Echo
  • May 03 - TBA
  • May 10 - TBA
  • May17 - euphonium artist Marie Robertson

Cosmik Debris
by Frank Zappa

The mystery man came over
And he said I'm outta sight
He said for a nominal service charge
I could reach nirvana tonight
If I was ready, willing and able
To pay him his regular fee
He would drop all the rest of his pressing affairs 
And devote his attention to me

But I said look here brother
Who you jiving with that cosmik debris? 
Now who you jiving with that cosmik debris? 
Look here brother, don't waste your time on me

The mystery man got nervous and he fidget around a bit
He reached in the pocket of his mystery robe
And he whipped out a shaving kit
Now I thought it was a razor
And a can of foaming goo
But he told me right then when the top popped open
There was nothin' his box won't do
With the oil of aphrodite, and the dust of the grand wazoo
He said: "You might not believe this, little fella, 
but it'll cure your Asthma too!"

An' I said Look here brother
Who you jivin' with that Cosmik Debris?
(Now what kind of a geroo are you anyway?)
Look here brother, Don't you waste your time on me
Don't waste yer time

I've got troubles of my own, I said
An' you can't help me out
So take your meditations an' your preparations
An' ram it up yer snout
"BUT I GOT A KRISTL BOL!," he said
An' held it to the light
So I snatched it
All away from him
An' I showed him how to do it right
I wrapped a newspaper 'round my head
So I'd look like I was Deep
I said some Mumbo Jumbos then
An' told him he was goin' to sleep

I robbed his rings an' pocket watch
An' everything else I found
I had that sucker hypnotized
He couldn't even make a sound
I proceeded to tell him his future then
As long as he was hanging around
I said "The price of meat has just gone up
An' yer ol' lady has just gone down . . . "

Look here brother who you jivin' with that Cosmik Debris?
(Now is that a real poncho or is that a Sears poncho?)
Don't you know you could make more money as a butcher
So don't you waste your time on me
(Don't waste it, don't waste your time on me . . . )
Ohm shanti, ohm shanti, ohm shanti-ohm Shanti
Jazz Poetry

The poems selected for this section of the newsletter comes from the book entitled The Jazz poetry anthology from Indiana University Press, 1991 written by Sascha Feinstein and Yusef Komunyakaa. According to

Sascha Feinstein is Assistant Professor of English at Lycoming College where he co-directs the creative writing program and edits Brilliant Corners: A Journal of Jazz & Literature . Yusef Komunyakaa received the Bronze Star for his service as a war correspondent in Vietnam. He won the Pulitzer Prize in poetry for his book"Neon Vernacular" in 1994. His other books include "Pleasure Dome, " "Thieves of Paradise, " "Talking Back to the Gods, " and "Blue Notes" and he has also written jazz lyrics. In 1999 he was elected a chancellor of the Academy of American Poets. He teaches at Princeton University.

In the Capability

        of one man's breath
as marion as strings 
shape vibrations in air 
& memory

on purpose 
a music which fights 
environment rings phone rings 
cash register clench yr teeth 

close yr eyes you have 
to hear the bass 

              up tight for 
this or that good sounds do 
not good vibrations make 

hard ass city 

of marks place 19 67 
ornette patted joshua on the belly 
& said “hey man” 

by Sam Abrams 
Video of the Week

I've been grooving on Frank Zappa here recently, and I'm reminded of just how groovy this cat was, so I am showcasing two videos: the first is of an interview with acclaimed guitarist Steve Vai who reverentially talks about Frank Zappa's intrigue. The second video is of Zappa's song "Cosmik Debris," which is so poignant and brilliant. I strongly encourage that you check out, at least, the second video. It may change your life.
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

The challenge to maintain this weekly newsletter is insidiously becoming more deleterious to my cerebral salubrity, but that’s merely because major changes are in the offing, major societal changes, like a tsunami that is currently nothing more than a distant barely palpable energy, nearly indiscernible, that one can feel but not yet see from the shore, looking out beyond the waves yet still noticing a disturbance of some formidable energy from which dramatic possibly violent change from the status quo is inevitable.

The challenge is that I, in a sense, keep two journals. One is public: The Jazzonian , which I share with a small group of progressive friends. The other my private journal, which I, obviously, keep secret. Both are necessary, but I have to be extra deliberate in keeping my more vitriolic rhetoric towards specific people separate from my scathing observations of some general hypocritical people. Fortunately, my spreading the good news of jazzonian influence comes easy to me, and the current political maelstrom that is wreaking havoc in the White House is quickly coming to a climax, which is exciting. I believe very strongly that Democracy will win; that Donald Trump will become the paragon loser of our nation; that the GOP will shatter only to reform in a not-too-distant reconfiguration; that women, especially women of color, and the youngsters will prevail, creating a socialistic Democracy that will encourage planetary peace for generations. Since the failed economic exploitation of Ronald Reagan (and the narcissistic 80s), we, as a nation, have taken a step backwards, but we’re about to take a giant leap forward in the evolution of humanity towards its more perfect terrestrial manifestation. That truly excites me.

I’m also currently reading “Russian Roulette,” which takes a bit of my time, but, again, I will soon have plenty of time to write and sing after Trump and Putin’s failed attempt to turn the United States into a Russian satellite fails, and we, as a nation of diverse citizens, can begin to repair the damage done by a population too indifferent to become involved in protecting their own government.

Peace Through Music


If you can afford it, and you think this newsletter worthy, please send a $5, $10, or $20 check or money order to:

The Jazzinian FUN’d Drive
962 Washington Road
Hamilton, Georgia 31811

It ain’t that I’m a Luddite, it’s just that I don’t know how to add a donate button that auto-magically-electronically transfers funds into my banking account. Besides, “the man” always seems to have his too-large-to-fail hand reaching out, palm upwards, in anticipation of remuneration he doesn’t deserve, fees he assesses for banking services rendered electronically via a computer application written by an underpaid intern. I guess, in a sense, I am more like Ned Ludd, the English laborer who was supposed to have destroyed weaving machinery around 1779 because he felt that technology would destroy employment for the laborer, except that I won’t physically destroy anything… other than, perhaps, the practice of usury; I merely want the practice of charging interest on loans to die of entropy. So, I reckon that I am a Luddite in that I believe in moderation and that humanity thrives when the mind and body are engaged instead of when one uses her wit to absquatulate with unjustified and excessive wealth, especially when she’s done nothing to earn it.

I currently pay out $20/month to use Constant Contact to publish this weekly newsletter. Well, it’ll be $20/month after the $10/month introductory offer expires… soon. If I could, I’d earn the money by singing, but my options are limited to accessible stages, which are not very common at all, and there aren’t many stages exclusively for jazz. Jazz is only granted a small piece of the pie… but it’s my passion. Seems like my only concert options are The Loft in Columbus, GA and Eighth and Rail in Opelika, AL; although, in Opelika I use a portable ramp to get onstage; one does what one has to do. When I sing at Venkman’s jazz jam, the soundman brings the microphone to my table, but I’d love to be on stage. How else can I perfect my secondary ambition to be a standup comedian. Incidentally, I currently take a sleeping pill because one of the side effects is somnambulation, but I’m still waiting to awaken ambulating.

I also have ambitions to sing onstage with my friend Ted McVay whom I’ve known forty years. We have a unique sound that, I believe, can and will be appreciated by a wider audience. We harmonize really well together, and the songs he writes are creative, witty, poignant, and fun to sing. Once we get a bit o’ steam, we’re bound to be a formidable, creative musical energy, positive, peaceful, loving. I will then, hopefully, make enough dough to overpay the people I need to assist me in acts of daily living. My family has already done so much for me and need a break. Thirty-one years is an awful long burden… thirty-two this April 18. ‘Til then, if you are able to comfortably part ways with a few bucks, I sure could use it.
Social Media Experiment

In an ignorant attempt to exploit social media to expand my personal fan base, I've created this section to list hashtags and other metadata that might auto-magically give more access to the newsletter I write. Hope it works.

#Wheelchairistacracy #SouthernStrategy #QuestForBest #GroovicusMaximus #FantastAbility #WheelChairistotle #SCI #Handicapplication #Impairistotle #MuscoviteMarionette #BlackLivesMatter 
#Wheelcherry #RudePundit #MakeStagesAccessible 

@SSTJazzVocalist @frangelaDuo @JoeGransden @AtlantaMagazine @VenkmansATL @rudepundit @MalcolmNance @EricBoehlert @CharlesPPierce @StephMillerShow @JohnFugelsang @Thom_Hartmann @anniesellick  @TheRealTBone