Thread: Wynton Marsalis
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Old 12-20-2010, 12:02 PM
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Default Re: Wynton Marsalis

Originally Posted by Deltadrummer View Post
Complaints about the head of any major arts organization can be levied. They get upwards of 2-4 million dollars a year to head an organization that subsists on grants, donations and trusts from the deceased. Many performers who play at these venues also make large remuneration because they bring in a lot of money.

I am sure that the reason why JALC is getting a large chunk of funding is because it is good for tourism, and brings in a lot of revenue for the city. It sits in a very, very high end piece of real estate in a mall that has a bunch of exclusive shops that are so expensive, I am not the person you would ask about shopping there. Lincoln Center was built over low cost housing. Dizzy's overlooks Central Park. The Jazz Gallery and Village Vanguard are in basements.

That's the way funding is for anything in the USA. People complain about welfare; but massive amounts of funding go to corporations and the wealthy through subsidies in defense and farming, or research in medicine and energy that is offered free. It becomes discussed when the government bails out financial institution while executives get royal treatment or spa vacations. But it happens all the time.
Ken, the initial outlay for the very creation of JALC cost well over 50 million federal dollars, and no one can possibly say any one has made any of that money back, to say nothing of the numerous regional jazz organizations that went under during an extended building process that was lengthened for no other reason then to milk the well dry via the largest free publicity campaign in the history of the music. Compare it to a federally funded Super Wal Mart that comes to a small town, scares the old downtown into selling out, then slows down the building and elevates what is essentially a free ad campaign to get the last stubborn old guys out of there. That's why by far the largest jazz organization to have ever existed /IAJE/ sweats it out and dies over a million. But no need to worry, Wynton and company already have a new way to have jazz competitions to fill in that gap and DVDs to show you how to stage your event their way, with Wynton providing the necessary introductions. It's true, I've seen the thing.

Then to show they're actually doing something while a 2 year project takes many years, you create the Essentially Ellington Competition and send your own guys out there to redefine how US jazz competitions should be handled, while you extend your building campaign again entirely for free by announcing the filming of Ken Burns' Jazz which uses up the lion's share of the rest of federal jazz funding for the NEXT two years and milks the Lila Wallace fund bone dry for that same period. Then you go to the Doris Duke Foundation which is the last available private jazz funding remaining and strong arm a bunch of politically sensitive progressives into doing their part for social justice...and suddenly all the money is diverted forever.

The JALC funding outlay is based on matching grants from other arts organizations that essentially feed from the same trough to survive. In other words, you get a big pile of money from a trough then go to other organizations for more money that feed from the same trough.

And I know some don't want to address this but most of the jazz ever created exists outside New York and for a lot less money.

This is why the guy has the power and why NYC musicians are afraid to cross him. And yeah it does affect the way music is played. How could it not?

I know this is the case because I've been hearing about these pathetic battles my whole life. Problem is I will state all this exacting info, but the next thought from someone else is well but...followed by repetition of the same point I just disproved, because in the minds of many tragically hip jazz people sounding ambivalent gives them a sense of coolness because they're not really listening to music or have given up altogether. I do not count you as one of those. Yet the phenomenon exists.
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