Tag Archives: the Blogosphere



“I’m walking on air,” Andy Razaf wrote, lyrics to a famous Fats Waller melody.  Me, too!

My generous jazz cyber-buddy Marc Myers* (of JAZZ WAX) just sent the good news.

The Jazz Journalists Association has announced the nominees for its 2009 awards, and JAZZ LIVES  –yes, what you are now reading — has been nominated as one of the Blogs of the Year.  (http://www.jazzjournalists.org/top-honors?page=4)

“Fine!  Wonderful!  Perfect!” to quote Fats himself.   Everyone writes to be read or to be heard.  Heartfelt thanks to all of you who have been doing both.  A special thank-you to the Beloved, who nudged me into the Blogosphere last February.

I’ll keep on blogging with even more pleasure.

*Marc, an extraordinary writer, a researcher, interviewer, and jazz detective, is nominated not only for his blog but for his journalism.  Swing, brother, swing!

P. S.   I took the photograph above — my idea of a vernal paradise — Sicily, last spring, probably near the hillside town of Enna.



Readers who find that ruminations make them itchy are encouraged to turn away, with my compliments.  Come back soon.  This posting has Dave Tough as its apparent subject, but its real theme is human nature.

Several days ago, celebrating Dave Tough’s life and mourning his death, I wrote several posts about him.  Kevin Dorn, who knows Tough’s work deeply, approved, which pleased me.

Then I found a comment from someone new, a European blogger I’ll call Mr. Easy.  He wrote that Tough was underrated, and continued: “Although he was an alcoholic like me, his range was very wide, in my humble opinion.” And he closed with a polite thank-you.

Mr. Easy’s candor took me aback for a moment, but I admired his sentiments and responded in agreement.  Curious about him, I found his site, full of jazz video clips of players I also admire.  Reflexively, I added his site to my blogroll so that other like-minded souls could visit it.  This is common practice — a mutual tipping of hats among bloggers, who are always looking to bring more readers to their sites.

This morning, I found a comment (posted on my site) from Mr. Easy, displeased that I had added his blog to my website.

I have edited one word for politeness: “Who gave you the permission, you —-?  Did I ASK you to do so?  You are very presumptuous!!!  My site is only for jazz connaieseireurs!!”

I thought that I was also a “jazz connaiesireur,” but enough of that.

However, I am not used to being called “a —-” on my own blog.  I thought that our conversation had reached its end.  So I wrote Mr. Easy, politely saying that he needn’t have been so offensive, that I had deleted his site and his comments, and that he could now go away.

His response took me by surprise, because the people I have met through this blog have been generous, smart, funny, encouraging, kind — obviously a rare bunch — and I am honored to have them.

And, when I think next of Mr. Easy, an old comment of my father’s will come to mind, when one of his friends met him on the street and asked how everything was: “Oh, things are tough all over.”

For some people, they are.  And the reference isn’t to Dave Tough, alas.


One of the great rewards of entering the Blogosphere is that I have gotten to meet some exceedingly talented people.  These encounters have been both online and in person.  A particular example is the gifted photographer John Herr, his work both precise and intuitive.  John hails from Syracuse, New York.  We met for the first time face to face at Chautauqua, and I’m delighted to present a few of his portraits here.  Notice how John not only captures the musicians in action, but also offers us a sense of the room, the stage, the audience.  Listen closely with your eyes.

John Sheridan, Bobby Gordon, Dan Block, Jon Burr, Randy Reinhart, Dan Barrett, John Von Ohlen.

Dan Barrett in full splendor.

James Dapogny, Marty Grosz, Vince Giordano, Bobby Gordon, Duke Heitger, Jon-Erik Kellso, Bob Havens.