I AM JAZZ

Of course Jazzmen are dynamic.  So are Amazing Musicwomen!

jazzmen womeninjazz

Freddie Hubbard is an icon!  He recorded my tune SWEET RETURN (1983) and put it in his Song Book making me historical (herstorical). I sat at the feet of Miles, Diz, Buhaina, Shepp, Yusef, Rahsaan, McCoy, and Ron Carter, learning all I could about the art of improvisation. I sat with Helen Morgan 3 years before she shot Lee. I AM JAZZ!

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Joan Cartwright, Freddie Hubbard, Jerry (owner of Allotria in Munich, Germany) Jeff Chambers, lady, Ronnie Matthews circa 1993

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I’ve been in conversations with Ella, Betty Carter, Irene Reid, Ruth Brown, Abbey Lincoln, and Dorothy Donegan. I was THERE at the Blue Note, Slugs in the Far East (Village) with Lee Morgan, Buhaina, Miles, Frank Foster, Charles McPherson, Bill Hardman and Joe Lee Wilson, Village Gate, at the Galleon (Bronx), and the Village Vanguard with Lou Donaldson, Dr. Lonnie Smith who recorded my first demo tape with me that got me gigs all over the European continent. Ellington’s bass player Aaron Bell first listened to my tune “Loneliblue” and said the musicians would love playing it.

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Joe Lee Wilson and Joan Cartwright, Brighton, England

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With Lou Donaldson at Jazz Inn, London, UK

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Joan Cartwright and Dorothy Donegan, Marian’s Jazz Room, Bern, Switzerland (1996)

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Abbey Lincoln and Joan Cartwright, Montreux Jazz Festival (1993)

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Joan Cartwright and Betty Carter, IAJE Conference, El Paso, TX, 1993

In Philly, Gerald Price taught me composition and piano, and in New York, Barry Harris was my teacher on piano and vocals. Budd Johnson was my babysitter from 4-8 years old. Milt Hinton (The Judge) was my cousin’s Godfather and he got me my first gig in Berne, Switzerland, at Marion’s Jazz Room, in 1990. I sat on Jay McShann’s lap and asked him to marry me. I proposed marriage to Quincy Jones just before I interview him for my Master’s Thesis, The Cultural Politics of Commercial Jazz, in 1993, which explained why I had to go to Europe (1990-1998) to make a living. In July 2013, I gave my book A History of African American Jazz and Blues to Quincy with the interview I did of him in 1993, 20 years earlier, in the exact same building – Stravinsky Hall, in Montreux, Switzerland [photo].

I AM Jazz!

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With Quincy Jones, Montreux Jazz Festival, Switzerland, at Claude Nobs’ Chalet, 1993

I am the Chronicler of this music. While everyone else was PLAYING, I was documenting it. I met Quincy Troupe, co-writer of Miles’ biography. I penned lyrics to A NIGHT IN TUNISIA, TUNE UP, BLUE BOSSA, and BESSIE’S BLUES and sang them all over Europe, the East Coast of the USA, and in China and Japan. I Am the female Jazz Messenger, who sang on Jazzmobile with Buhaina, Frank Foster, Frank Wes, George Coleman, and Charles McPherson. The first person to take me on the road was Philly Joe Jones, who took me to Baltimore to perform with Shirley Scott, Arthur Harper (bass), and Sonny Stitt, in 1978. I AM the only woman in the world with a Jazz and Blues Song Book that I submitted to the Guinness Book of Records.

JoanCartwrightSongBook               jc-historybook

Google me – www.joancartwright.com. But, more importantly, I am the foremost authority on Women in Jazz and Blues and I will not be quieted about the role of women as the Mothers of the Blues and the innovators of Jazz.  That’s why, in 2007, I founded www.wijsf.org to promote women musicians, globally! That’s why, since 2008, I’ve interviewed over 200 women composers at www.blogtalkradio.com/musicwoman

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That’s why I created the Jazzwomen Directory  that features 90 women musicians that most musicians, let alone people, do not know about and I put 40 of them in my book Amazing Musicwomen that I taught over 10,000 students (3-12 grade and college) in the U.S., Switzerland, Sicily, China, and Japan about.

I AM JAZZ!

Hear me SCAT!

Joan Cartwright and Dizzy Gillespie, Sunfest, West Palm Beach, FL 1985

Joan Cartwright and Dizzy Gillespie, Sunfest, West Palm Beach, FL 1985

READ my books:

In Pursuit of a Melody by Joan Cartwright  In Pursuit of a Melody

 

www.joancartwright.com

 

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Blues Women: First Civil Rights Workers

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The African voice inspired instrumentalists.  Vocalese was a dialogue between vocalists and instruments.  Each person had an individual sound and instrumentalists imitated the voice’s cries, growls, moans, slurs, whispers, shouts and wails.  Blues was the element of American subculture created by enslaved Africans, singing European music.  Considered crude by classical listeners, Blues liberated singers from precise pitch and calculated rhythms of European music.  Black singers emerged from Spirituals and Blues to develop Jazz.  Their free-spirited songs delivered messages of liberation, signaling to Africans in America that they could be free.  Blues women were the first civil rights workers because their songs symbolized liberty in its rawest form by tapping into the human spirit.  Angela Davis recounted Marx and Engles’ observation that art as “a form of social consciousness [awakens] . . . those affected by it to . . . transform their oppressive environments” (Davis, 1999).  Blues were popularized by Gertrude “Ma” Rainey (Columbus, GA, September, 1882 – December 22, 1939), The Mother of the Blues (Cartwright, 2008, p. 9).  A spokesperson for black people, she was a hero to them.  She recorded hundreds of songs on Paramount, putting that recording company on the map.  The most popular Blues singers established a rapport and rhetoric with the crowd.  Ma Rainey took Bessie Smith under her wing and Blues tradition developed as one followed another.
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This book Amazing Musicwomen has lots of information about Billie HolidayElla FitzgeraldDinah WashingtonMarian McPartland, Peggy Lee, Toshiko AkiyoshiAlberta Hunter, Bessie Smith, Ethel Waters, and other Musicwomen. Musicwoman Radio and Musicwoman Magazine tell the stories of Amazing Musicwomenwho paved the way for vocalists, song stylists, singers, composers, and instrumentalists. Their songs are from The American Song Book that includes original songs like Alberta Hunter’s “Downhearted Blues”, “Handy Man”, and “Rough & Ready Man” plus songs of Broadway composers of the early 1900s, Duke Ellington, Billie Strayhorn, Hoagy Carmichael, Johnny Mercer, Cole Porter, Rodgers & Hammerstein, Fats Waller, and Broadway composers Michel LeGrande, Stevie Wonder, Burt Bacharach and Isaac Hayes. [NOTE, after Alberta Hunter, the absence of women composers. Who were they? Does anybody know?] OK, Barbra Streisand, Carol King, Carly Simon, Roberta Flack, and who else? www.lulu.com/spotlight/divajc

Buy the book

Buy the download

References

Cartwright, J. (2008).  Amazing Musicwomen.  FYI Communications, Inc.

Davis, A.Y. (1999).  Blues legacies and black feminism. New York: Random House.

©2014 Joan Cartwright, M.A.

MUSICWOMAN MAGAZINE Launch

15 years in the making, MUSICWOMAN MAGAZINE is the brainchild of composer and vocalist Joan Cartwright, founder of Women in Jazz South Florida, Inc. and host of MUSICWOMAN RADIO, in the 7th year of featuring women who compose and perform their own music and men who support them.

Ms. Cartwright is an author of 10 books, produces concerts and events, researches and documents women in jazz and blues, and in music, in general.  She is a noted composer, having two CDs of her own and three compilation CDs with 27 women composers, released in 2011, 2012, and 2013.The articles in this publication will reflect the lives, work, and passion of women like Ms. Cartwright, who claim music as their profession.  Authors, journalists, photographers, musicians, critics, and fans are encouraged to submit articles to the Editor.Also, we encourage any and all advertisers to see our RATE SHEET and inquire about advertisement in MUSICWOMAN MAGAZINE.

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Musical Mentors

As a child, I visited the home of Milt and Mona Hinton, my cousin Pamela’s godparents. Their daughter Charlotte was our age (14-15) and we were invited to her birthday party one year. In 1990, I met Milt and Mona in Switzerland at Marion’s Jazz Room in Der Schweitzerhoff in Berne. They remembered me from 1961! Milt must have given the green light to the owners of the club – Marion and her husband because they booked me for a week, some years later, at their new location atop a hill in Berne, where I met Dorothy Donegan, another fascinating mentor in my musical career.

My musical mentors are part of who I am. Who are yours?
Diva JC

In Switzerland, I had the immense pleasure of singing with Dorothy Donegan at Marian’s Jazz Room. THAT was an evening to remember!

Children’s books about music and musicians

  Amazing Musicwomen
Joan Cartwright, M.A. is the author of In Pursuit Of A Melody, a compilation of photographs, memoirs,  poetry, lyrics and 40 original songs. An internationally known jazz performer, Joan is a composer, recording artist and educator. She is the founder and director of Women in Jazz South Florida, Inc.

Ms. Cartwright’s 45-60 minute lecture, AMAZING MUSICWOMEN has been funded by SEAS Grants, in 1998, 1999, 2000 and 2011; Broward Cultural Council in 2009 + 2010; and BankAtlantic Summer SmARTS Program, demonstrating superb results with 8,000+ students at several Broward County schools and two international schools in Tokyo, Japan and Tianjin, China.

Who’s listening?

I am listening. I am a musician. I contend that, once Music was eradicated from the school curriculum by the over-importance of subjects like HISTORY that are really brainwashing tools, the art of listening took a downward spiral. ALL of us as children learned to LISTEN through Music. We learned our ABCs through music. We learned how to create relationships through Music. I don’t want to sound like a conspiracy theorist but I do believe the powers that be decidedly removed Music from the curriculum on purpose to create a roboton society that either obeys or is rebellious so that they could fill up the spaces in the Prison Industrial Complex.

On the subject of tuning out and being distracted, while children play on their own, I totally agree. People are not paying attention, simply because they don’t understand the importance of LISTENING. The so-called “Music” being played on the radio these days is also a turn off to listening. Whoever thought up the theory that loud, disharmonious rock is the best thing for youngsters to listen to. I’m not propounding listening only to classical music but cacophony is certainly not conducive to well-adjustment. Of course, this is only MY opinion and I do not care to impose this idea on others. However, I do find classical and jazz music to be soothing and more prone to helping me live a well-balanced life.

So, bring MUSIC studies back to school, pre-school, K-12 and watch our society change from apathy to humanity!

This is a response to a poster on a TED video with Julian Treasure on Listening:

Adriane Panciera wrote:
Bringing back music programs to all elementary schools would do a lot to help attune a child to that skill. Also its something that is much easier to learn as you are learning a language (your first or fifth). Music and sound making (aka noise to adults) are the very first langage of all children. As we learn to “tune out” as adults, we tend to lose our sense of child like curiousness, and natural source of empathy. As a side note- when I see parents of young children in the playground, on their smart phones, not engaging in the moment, I see a generation that is tragically crippled from the start. These same children will be engaged with the same level of distraction in a few years time. It’s good to have this conversation now. I wonder if anyone is listening?

Here are children that my organization is working with. They are focused and work so well together. Listening is at the core of what they learn how to do.

BlogTracks: You Dig, Dig, Dig. What Have You Got There? Gold!

BlogTracks: You Dig, Dig, Dig. What Have You Got There? Gold!

My response to post above by Val,

I’m in complete alignment with you. What I found is that writing is the best way for me to dig into the gold mine of my being. One day, while walking around my two lakes, I met a gay man who pointed out a rainbow to me. I couldn’t see it because I had dark sunglasses on. When I removed them, I saw TWO rainbows, perched directly over my apartment building. That’s how life is. You must take off the rose-tinted glasses to see the truth and, if your glasses are too dark, you could miss all the bright beauty of life. Also, that beautiful morning, the moon was in the sky, along with fluffy white clouds and there were sun showers falling on my head! So, when I got back to my computer, I immediately penned my book “The Moon, Sun Showers, Rainbows and Whipped Cream Clouds”.

Someone said at a book fair I participated in last month that we shouldn’t write books with the intention of making a lot of money. I agree. I have published nine books, including the one mentioned above and, I have to admit, I have sold a million copies of any of them, yet. But writing them, publishing them and sharing them with others makes me feel worth a million! First, people realize that I am industrious and have something to say. Secondly, I recognize my own “transformation and transmutation” from a mediocre being to a Divine Being of Light, Love and Music.

Writing is transformational. Like music, which I consider to be the “mastery of mind”, writing is like using a pick and shovel to dig deep down into the crevices of your soul. Often, I wondered why and how people wrote books, before I began writing my own. Then, I understood, after taking 13 months to produce my first book “In Pursuit of a Melody”, that it is the best therapy I could have ever engaged in. Now, I’m teaching others how to write and publish their own lives. My workshop – Write Your Life takes people through the process from beginning to end.

Learn more about my books and workshop at http://fyicomminc.com/books/jc-books.htm#WRITE
and thanks for this post!

Joan Cartwright
http://www.joancartwright.com