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The Guardian festival blog: Jazz’s freethinkers take centre stage as old Europe and new America spark | Music

Jazz in Europe has come a long way since 1919 when the Times dismissed a London variety orchestra’s interest in the new genre as a flirtation with “one of the many American peculiarities that threaten to make life a nightmare”. The paper was already a little late – the Original Dixieland Jazz Band’s Livery Stable Blues had become the first jazz recording two years earlier. This raucously unbuttoned new dance music set loose the jazz age.

This year marks the 100th anniversary of that landmark record, and with it comes a fascinating reminder of the surprise jazz sprang on the world – as an art form and a volatile dancefloor fuel born of mass migration, post-slavery racism, and the creative tension of schooled and unschooled musicians thrown together in early-20th-century American boom towns. Its global influence, in Europe, Asia, Africa, the Caribbean and Latin America, is reflected in the programming of this week’s…


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Straight from The Guardian
(image courtesy of http://www.rosestallard.com/)


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