The label, “Jazz” was affixed to the music as the result of its origin in the pleasure houses of New Orleans.  Jasmine was used as a fragrance in these establishments, and the name, “Jazz” became the word by which the music became known until the present day.  However, many people do not know what “Jazz” is, and when asked for a definition, Louis Armstrong was famously known to have said, “If you have to ask, you’ll never know”.  In fact, the label, “Jazz” is controversial among its own practitioners.  Eminent musicians such as Miles Davis and Gary Bartz, to name a couple, said they did not want the music labeled with that name any more.  When asked what it should be called, the answer was, “music”.  The term itself has increasingly become a marketing ploy.  Music must be labeled to sell. There is a lot of music now placed into the category of “Jazz”, which is really not Jazz at all.  Music festivals worldwide proclaim to be “Jazz Festivals”, but include wide ranging music styles from R&B to Pop and God knows what all.  Then there is so called, “Smooth Jazz”, a genre of which many true Jazz musicians are not fond, and think of it as Pop music with a jazzy feeling.

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