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10/03/2011

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Nicole Williams Sitaraman

I am a little late to this discussion but I really appreciate this article. Thank you very much for delving into this topic. I am a new jazz blogger with a site that is dedicated to women jazz musicians: Jazz Virtuosa - http://jazzvirtuosa.blogspot.com/. The question of whether jazz criticism would hold the interest of female minds is a poignant one. I believe that the answer is a resounding yes but only if women and girls were encouraged to listen critically to jazz. I see this issue as similar to the way girls are underrepresented in the math, science and technology fields. We just have to "re-socialize" our girls to enjoy and take ownership of what is rightfully theirs -- the music.

Lyn Horton

I wrote this to JazzTimes immediately after I read the article in the print publication:


Regarding Nate Chinen's column in the October issue of JT, entitled "Women's Work"... The last time I looked, my name was listed in the JT Contributing Writers on the info page of the magazine. I am a woman. Granted I do not write about mainstream "jazz," but the articles I do write, not only for JT online, but also, in the past, for All About Jazz, The New York Jazz Record, and more recently for my blog, The Paradigm for Beauty, http://lynhorton.blogspot.com/, are concerned with creative improvised music, often reviewed in this magazine. My writing has been received well by the public and by the musicians I write about. I am asked for my Top Ten by four publications. During my stint at AAJ lasting five years, my readership, as of today, is just over 15,000. In a year and a half, the readership on my blog is just under 15,000. I must be doing something right. I speak my mind, "conventions be damned."

W. Royal Stokes

Nate, please check out my essay “Women in Jazz: Some Observations Regarding the Ongoing Discrimination in Performance and Journalism” (www.wroyalstokes.com/archive/women_in_jazz.htm). It was both published in Jazz Notes (JJA quarterly) and posted on my website (wroyalstokes.com) a decade or so ago. Plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose (The more things change, the more they stay the same.)

Paul Bradshaw (@pb_monk)

just posted this on jazz times...

To answer the the question, "Why wouldn't jazz criticism hold the interest of the brightest female minds?", I'd suggest an interview with someone like Valerie Wilmer. As a writer and a superb photographer she seems to have been swept off the radar. Her biography 'Mama Said There'd Be Days Like This' is a great insight into the jazz life from a woman who started off taking pictures/portraits as a kid. Though from London, her book 'As Serious As Your Life' remains one of the most compelling and incisive books on the "New Thing" and the emergence of the NYC Loft scene... it certainly helped boost my record collection and it took me on a compelling musical journey within an unashamedly radical political context.

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