well you can take the jazz outa radical politics but you can't etc etc .... alas tho did not hear Mr Kinch ... what'd he say?
well you can take the jazz outa radical politics but you can't etc etc .... alas tho did not hear Mr Kinch ... what'd he say?
More or less what it said on the tin - nothing spectacularly "new": he cited Freedom Now and recordings by Clash, the Specials etc as instancing past eras when jazz and other genres stood for resisting oppression, racism etc, in comparison with the lame, particularly pop presentations of today. It was just good to hear someone reiterating these points, rarely featured on any of the music scenes of now.
Erm, I'd rather not, Calum, my good friend. Atzmon is surely a cartoon. It is not so much, as The Guardian remarked, that it is "odd to mix knob gags with highly serious assertions". It is more the wacky notion that a self-confessed "proud self-hating Jew" who condemns Jewishness as "a supremacist, racist tendency" can be seen as fully constructed when he adds "I don't have anything against Jews in particular". Robert Wyatt is wrong about this one. Atzmon does not combine "great artistry with a sense of the intrinsically non-racialist philosophy that's implicit in jazz." Rather, he's a musically talented Ahmadinejad whose comments have only begun to be toned down as, in middle age, he looks to sales figures. How pragmatic of the guy, even square.
Charlie Gillett's interview with Yasmin Levy sticks in my mind as an occasion when an artist born in Jerusalem did everything possible to distance herself from that fact. She emphasised the cross-cultural strands in her music and there was even room in that exchange for much discussion on the Spanish, flamenco and Ladino, with some notable irritation from her whenever the other matter was steered. In fairness to Yasmin, those references do reflect her background, or her father's at any rate, and I am all for building bridges in music as well as keeping to local traditions. Nevertheless, it is probably the case that Jewish music - and I do mean Jewish here, just as Atzmon does, and not specifically Israeli - is the only example of artistic purity regarded as diabolical.
That isn't right or fair, even if it is trendy. Atzmon and his complex ilk can have a very unhealthy influence. If he is a non-racist, anti-racism has become warped or diminished to the point of reckless fun. Either way, it is more pernicious than perplexing. All people in the part of the world that houses "Jew-land" - Atzmon's word not mine - need to see their common cause. Whichever country they inhabit, most should have huge grievances against "The West". What better reason for deciding to pull together, even if a jazz brother is in the States. Hell, he is so right on that he could be an average American. Only a very small leap in an unusual imagination. He'll be a self-respecting member of the SWP. It all fits together so well or perhaps not. He should be a politician.
As for Soweto, he appears to be quite a good bloke. In fact, I have "Adrian's Ballad" in one of my playlists. What I like in musicians is the identification with ordinary individuals and their conditions. Surely nobody should ever be viewed simply as tattoos of their given systems. First and secondly, culture is the flexible expression of the components of identity. Even during the low moments, it moves about that theme. Thirdly, politics will and should, of course, leave their mark on the mat. Jazz is often at the hinges to push this further. But if we want a bit of sensation combined with a dose of the celebrity grasp, the handles must be truth and transparency. Green Day or Gaga suffice. At least we sort of know where they are. On the high jumps of "The Industry" in mid-air.
But in contrast to Atzmon, well, let's hand it to Mr Kinch. His feet do appear to be walking in his personal tower block. The same was true of Joe Strummer and to some extent of Terry Hall. Funny but I don't recall either ever saying to the press "I'm not going to say whether it is right or not to burn down a synagogue, I can see that it is a rational act." Admittedly we live in different times but, for goodness sake, this lesser Gil is now 47 and he isn't Ivor Biggun. Can he not let his music speak for him fully and even change him into a people person? It isn't as if he never knew a period when, more than a little sensibly, most balconies in musical communities faced outwards. And even the Hooded Claw took time out on occasions from races to break the fourth wall.
Signed respectfully - Lateralthinking1 - officially C of E and currently based approx 20 miles from Tunbridge Wells.
Last edited by Lateralthinking1; 31-12-10 at 07:31.
well i take a different view of Atzmon LateralT but nuff said ...
Who he/she?....research in process....
"To the extent that necessity finds itself socially dreamed, the dream becomes necessary."
"The fact that the practical power of modern society has detached otself from itself, and has built an independent empire in the spectacle, can only be explained by the other fact that this powerful practice continues to lack cohesion and remains in contradiction with itself."
Marx, Theses on Feuerbach: "But the fact that the profane basis detaches itself from itself and fixes itself in the clouds as an autonomous empire is only explained by the fact that this profane basis is divided into two antagonistic parties."
"The fetishistic appearance of pure objectivity in spectacular relations hides their relational character between human beings and between classes: a second nature appears to dominate our environment through its fatal laws."
Lukacs, History and Class Consciousness.
"In the spectacle, a part of the world represents itself to the world and is superior to it."
Marx, Theses on Feuerbach: "It thus tends to divide society into two parts, one of which is elevated above society."
"The spectacle unites the separate, but it unites it as the separate."
Hegel, Youthful Theological Works: "In love, the separate still exists but no longer as separate: as a unity, and the living encounters the living."
"The alienation of the spectator to the profit of the contemplated object (which is the result of its own unconscious activity) expresses itself thus: the more he contemplates, the less he lives; the more he accepts recognizing himself in the dominant images of need, the less he understands his own existence and his own desires. The exteriority of the spectacle with respect to the actor appears in the fact that his own gestures are no longer his, but those of another who represents them to him. This is why the spectator does not feel at home anywhere, because the spectacle is everywhere."
Marx, Economic and Philosophical Manuscripts: "The renunciation of self, the renunciation of life and all desire is the central thesis [of political economy] . . . . The less you are, the less you manifest your life; the more you have, the more your alienated life grows, the more you accumulate your alienated being."
"The spectacle is the map of this new world, a map that exactly covers the territory."
Korzybski: "The map is not the territory."
This, while interesting, is a little above me. Mine was in standard 5/4 time and even the evens were sort of evenly spaced.
I'm not sure that the solution to two opposing forces is for one to split itself, any more than it can be found by having those who caused the opposition as facilitators. Much better, I think, to see the split as being on the wrong fault line and then to shift it across to where it actually belongs.
Happy to have the link. Free speech and so on. In fact, I listened to much of his interview with Jamoke. However, it showed that as he moves from Israel to Britain to the States, he turns into an archetype of his predecessors who were always made to feel that they were not worthy of a home. This, it has to be said, is somewhat ironic. But then it may be because he feels that he is personally responsible for every atrocity committed by his people and that they are unique. If only. There is not a nation, race or religion that doesn't have blood on it's hands. As a British citizen, I am supposed to apologise personally for slavery. I won't. I find it an abysmal historical fact, while also recognising that those involved did not see it through 21st century eyes, and I just don't have the ego to believe that I have the individual power of recompense, let alone culpability.
I do not doubt that on some level he is well-meaning. Most of us are. This "outlook" of his really doesn't seem coherent to me though. He accepts that he isn't political. Why remain Jewish and have Jewish members in the band if he really feels that bad about the faith and cannot separate it from the more extreme politics? Why set up home in the country of all countries that supports the country he so despises? Why not be based, for example, in Palestine? Why not be in Iran? And where exactly is it that all Israelis should be shipped off to now? I hear no answers and yet that is a key question in the real world. As for the notion of likely reactions to a new little Italian state in Piccadilly Circus, you know what? While British citizens buy truck loads of cheap clothes produced in slave conditions somewhere else in the world, Spain, France, and every other country you can think of owns our basic utilities and a lot more besides. That's not a little state. It's the very foundations.
His music is fine. The self-hate is bemusing and questionable. This is one of the rare occasions when I think I would be interested to hear what a psychiatrist would say on delving further. I just don't identify with it. I'd go as far as to say that 2010 was the year when I came to really despise Britain but I look at individual Britons as people and don't despise myself for being born British. There's nothing I can do about that and fortunately that is just politics. Religion is generally deeper in the identity and yet change there is possible for many of us if we have the will to do it. Without that, we move our limbs but little else.
Btw, I'm looking forward to beginning to learn about jazz again irrespective of politics. I am naturally political but all the politics I see now have failed and in their current form are wholly beyond repair globally. Lat.
Last edited by Lateralthinking1; 31-12-10 at 15:04.
i have met GA, i do not think he hates himself, i think he renounces a dream of a people he knows he belongs to since he refuses the relationships it entails and seeks a direct and other contact ....
he is a jazz artist with a radical idea or two eh, agree or not .... not all radical ideas accommodate our sympathies or understanding eh?
i would rather not praise nor condemn nor seek to elaborate a spurious public reputation of GA
my experience of him as a jazz artist in a small recital room with just himself and Frank Harrison on keyboards is that he is one of the finest improvisers i have heard, capable of Rollins' type development, and Kirk's expressiveness [based on hearing them in Scott's old place long ago]
and yep i think Hegel can be full of sh1t [enough so as not to bother too much reading him] .... this reflects both on him and me tho, take it as you will
That's good for me. I genuinely hope that you don't take it personally because mine is just an opinion. You have a lot of reading in areas I don't have and the fact that I try to understand a little of your quotations means that I feel that I could learn something. I'm going to backtrack very slightly. When I referred to an attempt at a hatchet job on this musician - and it was - it was essentially criticism of the ideas. I can't change those and would only want him to change them if that occurred naturally. With hindsight, I was a bit heavy on the man as a person, not that any of my words count for anything much.
Having said this, he doesn't help himself when, as I have read, he justifies speeches by the Iranian leader who many Iranians abhor. I have always had Jewish sympathies but I also have Palestinian sympathies and sympathies with ordinary Iranians and so on. I sympathise with the recently oppressed. National Insurance was introduced here in 1911. In historical terms I see that as recent so I certainly see as recent what happened much later when my parents were teenagers and at work. Anyway, that's it. The law of diminishing returns so I'm going back to the music. Hope this is all ok with you and perhaps best if I don't take part in football discussions either. I might as well mention at this point that I'm a card carrying member of the team they call the Arsenal. Oh no!!! :cool2:
Last edited by Lateralthinking1; 31-12-10 at 12:18.