Thursday, May 24, 2007

Edgy Stuff II--Dennis

Thanks for the wide range of comments to the earlier post (if you haven't read them all, just page down. All are excellent thoughts).

The bottom line is that we consider the main thrust of our mission to find ways to make jazz accessible to a greater number of people, without pandering. In other words, to try and grow the segment. KCCK will never be for everyone, but I think you'll agree that trying to create a bigger fan base is good for the station and the music. If we just program to an ever-shrinking group of jazz purists [you know who you are... :)], eventually it will become difficult to justify our existence, let alone find the money to keep going.

But that said, we also recognize the importance of trying always to portray the whole picture of where jazz is and where it's going. And that certainly includes edgy, progessive, avant-garde...whatever you want to call it... jazz.

Scheduling is always the problem. 10 or 11 pm seems like a good place to put a show like this, and that's actually the recommendation some of you have made.

But as astute listeners know, we are reserving the 11p-2a weeknight slot for student producers, as providing opportunities to beginners is an important part of our mission.

The idea of taking the Jazz Masters slot once or twice a week for an avant garde/progressive show may have merit, although you should know that one reason we put that show on at that time was at the request of school band directors, who wanted a place their students could hear classic jazz recordings at a time they were likely to listen.

But let us work on it. In the meantime, who are the artists you think belong on a show like this?
Who are you listening to? Who would you like to hear? Let us know and we'll start trying to build a library, and will also start thinking about where a show like this would be placed on the schedule.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Edgier Stuff? -- Dennis

Here's a comment from a recent posting I made, which I would like to use to start a new conversation:

I would like to hear more CAM Jazz on the station, and ECM. I would like to have a formal mechanism for listeners to recommend discs that are not getting air time. Here's my first one: "What Now?", Kenny Wheeler, CAM Jazz. I would like to have a specific time slot every week for edgier material of all stripes: 60's and 70's dark fusion, noisy New York Zorn and Frisell type stuff, Threadgill and late Coltrane avant garde, wiggy ECM a la Garbarek, ethnic stuff like Anour Brahem and Rabih Abou-Kahlil, etc. Thanks.

This is a tough one. We all know that jazz is at its best when someone pushes the envelope. Miles Davis totally reinvented how we think about jazz, not once but several times.

But, we see an important aspect of our business as inviting new people to experience jazz and making the station as welcoming to untrained ears as well as people who have been listening to jazz all their lives.

It's a delicate balance to strike, and we know we can never please every one. Edgy jazz shows haven't really been too much on our radar because frankly, "regular" jazz is edgy enough for most people.

#1 complaint about jazz in general and one we hear about KCCK often? Something to the effect of.... "It's fine till those saxophones start to honk and there's no melody."

But, it's a big tent, and there are a lot of hours in a week.

So, what do you think? Would you tune in for a show that featured edgy jazz? What time do you think it should be on? Who should host?

We'll be interested to hear your thoughts.

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Your Message Here-Dennis

Here's a recent comment left for us (I'll cut and paste so you don't have to page down):


I'm curious if you want comments on this blog. It appears as though you just want it to be a billboard that you post messages to. Do you want interaction? Discussion about jazz? People to post comments?

If yes, please post so others can see. I'm sure the jazz community you serve have quite a few things they could contribute.

The answer is YES. When we started this blog, it was our hope to encourage two-way communication with our listeners and jazz fans. The poster is right, though, most of the time it's just one-way, us posting things about the station and our shows and events. Why? Well, those are the things that are topmost in our minds on a daily basis. I'd love to be able to say we spend our free time here pondering weighty trends in jazz and culture, but like most working stiffs, we're mainly just trying to muddle through each day's crisis. :)

But that said, we would like to see this blog become a forum for your thoughts on jazz and on KCCK. If there are topics you'd like to see addressed or discussed, send them to me directly, I'll start a new thread.

One caveat: The thing we don't really want to get into on the blog is referendums on particular shows or personalities. We know not everything on KCCK will be to your particular taste, but I can guarantee you something.... Each and every show is someone's MOST favorite and someone else's LEAST favorite.

Mean-spirited comments or jibes about our staff or shows will be deleted. All else is fair game!

We'll be waiting to hear from you.