• Ms. Larson’s story, “The Happy Thing of Bayou de Manque,” is the winner of the 47th Jerry Jazz Musician Short Fiction Contest.


  • In an interview originally published on Jerry Jazz Musician in 2014, Louis Armstrong biographer Thomas Brothers talks about his second volume devoted to the most eminent jazz musician’s life, Louis Armstrong:  Master of Modernism.


  • An open free reed.
    The winds of blues under
    Paris lights.  Crystal rain.



  • A collection of 29 poems by 18 poets celebrating love and jazz music…
  • A short story by Erin Larson
  • A Black History Month Profile: Louis Armstrong
  • "Toots Thielemans" - a poem by Roger Singer
  • A collection of poetry celebrating love and jazz

“Even the drummers on 52nd St. sound like Dizzy Gillespie!”

While the romantic notion is to imagine that the music coming out of the clubs lining New York’s 52nd Street during the 1940’s was universally applauded, we of course know that is not the case.  In an example of this dissent, consider the words of Los Angeleno Norman Granz, who told Downbeat this during his April, 1945 visit to New York:

“Jazz in New York stinks!  Even the drummers on 52nd St. sound like Dizzy Gillespie!” 

“I can’t tell you how disappointed I am in the quality of music here.  We keep getting great reports out west about the renaissance of jazz along 52nd St. but I’d like to know where it is.  Literally, there isn’t one trumpet player in any of the clubs with the exception of ‘Lips’ Page and he was blowing a mellophone the night I caught him.  Maybe Gillespie was great but the ‘advanced’ group that Charlie Parker is fronting at the Three Deuces doesn’t

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Literature » Poetry

Jazz, Poetry, and Love

I have invited many of our contributing poets to submit their work that combines the themes of jazz music and love.  The result will be a collection of poetry to be published on Valentines Day, this coming February 14.

If you wish to have your work considered, please submit it to

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Nat Cole and the KKK

     An uncredited piece in the January 11, 2018 edition of AL.com titled “The Night Nat Cole was Beaten on a Birmingham Stage” recounts the April 10, 1956 evening in Birmingham, Alabama, in which Nat Cole was attacked on stage by local members of the Ku Klux Klan.  It is not only an example of our not-so-distant racist past, but also concerns the complexity concerning Cole’s involvement (or lack thereof) in the civil rights movement.  Consider this brief excerpt from the article:


     “I can’t understand it,” Cole said of the attack.  “I have not taken part in any protests. Nor have I joined an organization fighting segregation. Why should they attack me? I’d just like to forget about the whole thing.”

     Roy Wilkins, the executive secretary of NAACP sent Cole a telegram after the attack, “You have not been a crusader or engaged in

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