“Pizzazz Curator” — a poem by Alan Campbell

February 19th, 2018

painting by Mark Kazav




Pizzazz Curator


Excursions in free-fixed melodic,
A quirk-offering; dust of suitcase-bearing dreams
Plucking away sobriety in taps of steps
Blending day chords with night rhythms
An immediate perfume, instinctively
simultaneous, splash-knitting, jazz.

A shell-cracking acute accent
Euphonic sonic authenticity
– the slapping twist of smooth, combusted, metabolised notes
paddling toward islands, esoteric soul colonies –
terrain of terrific flats and quintessential sharps.
Slaving agreeably to cadence
Adrenalised on the lyrical weave of notation – inhaling out-breaths;
respiration-forming mind-alterations.
Nourishing tissue sparkling, ducts sprinkling tears
Emanation, effervescing, jazz.




Alan John Campbell is a poet who hails from Scotland, near Glasgow. He’s been published in print and online in such outlets and periodicals as The Trove (of The Subsynchronous Press), Lunaris Review, The Old Red Kimono, Poetry Scotland, The Cannon’s Mouth, The Lincoln Underground, Octavius, The Seventh Quarry and Visual Verse among others. His work has also appeared three times with Lost Tower Publications. He aspires to producing a first jazz poetry collection which will express the ineffable spurts of the rhythmic lifeblood of that jazz pulse.

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In This Issue

This issue features a roundtable discussion about how the world of religion may have impacted the creative lives of Billie Holiday, Langston Hughes and Ralph Ellison. Also, previous winners of the Jerry Jazz Musician Short Fiction Contest reflect on their winning story; three new podcasts from Bob Hecht; new collection of poetry; recommendations of recently released jazz recordings, and lots more.

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"The Wailing Wall" -- a short story by Justin Short


Three prominent religious scholars -- Wallace Best, Tracy Fessenden and M. Cooper Harriss -- join us in a conversation about how the world of religion during the life and times of Langston Hughes (pictured), Billie Holiday and Ralph Ellison helps us better comprehend the meaning of their work.


Nine poets contribute ten poems celebrating jazz in poems as unique as the music itself

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In celebration of our upcoming 50th Short Fiction Contest, previous contest winners (dating to 2002) reflect on their own winning story, and how their lives have since unfolded.

The Joys of Jazz

In this edition, award winning radio producer Bob Hecht tells three stories; 1) on Charlie Christian, the first superstar of jazz guitar; 2) the poet Langston Hughes’ love of jazz music, and 3) a profile of the song “Strange Fruit”

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25 recently released jazz tunes that are worth listening to…including Bobo Stenson; Medeski, Martin and Wood; Muriel Grossman and Rudy Royston


Chick Corea, Rickie Lee Jones, Gary Giddins, Michael Cuscuna, Randy Brecker and Tom Piazza are among those responding to our question, "What are 3 or 4 of your favorite jazz recordings of the 1940's?"


"Billie Holiday" -- a poem (with collage) by Steve Dalachinsky

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This issue features an interview with Bing Crosby biographer Gary Giddins; a collection of poetry devoted to the World War II era; and a new edition of “Reminiscing in Tempo,” in which the question “What are 3 or 4 of your favorite jazz recordings of the 1940’s” is posed to Rickie Lee Jones, Chick Corea, Tom Piazza and others.

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