The time has come to harvest. With just this side of two months remaining in this centennial of a Jazz culture true original
, it has fallen upon me that I now focus my attention on presenting a fitting finale, to my study of the life and legacy of Daniel Moses Barker. I find myself referring to various excerpts presented in previous posts
. Still... there is so much seed to be sown from the lesson given on, March 15th, 1977 – perhaps Danny was mindful of the Fall of Rome. For in the previous few days a Jazz drumming militant Black Muslim had carefully staged (and shall we say, boldly improvised) a dynamic siege of three Washington, D.C. buildings. All the while, Mr. Barker again instructs the students to turn the ear holes (and perhaps, nose holes) to the music, “to see how the Message
was coming along.”
There is still more material from other lectures to present. More topics await scrutiny and, perhaps they are the toughest of love. I feel that there is still more thought to be shared regarding the Jazzy Prophet Daniel, and the Jazzy Martyr El-Hajj Malik. Though I know of no evidence bringing the two men together, it only seems natural to do a comparative study. (I will add that I also retrieved a 1966 paperback edition of, The Autobiography of Malcolm X, from Danny's flood blown archive room.)
There are some loose ends. Seemingly tangential flights on Danny's rapid stream of consciousness. I will throw them up and let them fall back down, hopefully keeping it in the groove. (Some of this material will be sidewinded in the Comments section – for those who dig deeper.) Maybe other Jazz thinkers to come will make connections that I can't hear or see right now. With all of that said: Let me now swing it on you in fiery and dynamic, bird-like precision... this ape.
Danny talks humorously of the attitude which he encountered among new converts to Islam, and apparently self-proclaimed Black nationalists. He had first-hand interactions with many of these men in his life in Jazz. I wonder: Was Danny aware that 'Soul Brother Number One' faced down repeated criticism from emerging black leaders who suggested that Brown cut off his process? By the mid-1970's, the 'Godfather' had gone “natural” and... was on his way down (tho not out.) Nevertheless, the point of this excerpt speaks to the essential issue in Jazz music and, Jazz life. How much of our expression is about an idea of freedom – which America simultaneously proclaims and denies – and how much is about day-to-day survival?
On with my own survival... with the continued hope that you will contribute to such, I offer this dizzying atmosphere which Mr. Barker cuts in the groove of another side by John Burks Gillespie. And I give Special Credit to students who can name the tune. The location is my Main Page
Peace & Pops,
Maison Musique, New Orleans
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