Nikki Yanofsky’s jazz advice for newbies


From CBC:

What do you tell the person who says, “I just don’t get jazz”?

The thing is, jazz has a stigma of being complex because of its typical many chord changes. When someone says “I just don’t get jazz,” I would just tell them not to overthink it when listening. Just let it make you feel something you’ve never felt.

Which three albums would you give to a jazz newbie to win his or her heart?

Louis and Ella. This was the first jazz album I’ve ever heard and its endearing and simple style is enough to convert anyone to jazz.

Quincy Jones’s Big Band Bossa Nova. Q is the best. And this album captures his fun and contagious energy. Soul bossa nova is one of my favourite songs of all time, it is pure genius. This album makes you want to dance

Miles Davis, but it’s a tie between Kind of Blue and E.S.P. Both are classic. I think I’ve tried to learn every single solo on Kind of Blue. Miles has a way of making the most complex musical ideas sound super simple and easy to listen to. He puts his heart into every note. I think anyone could feel that.

E.S.P is amazing because it’s the first recording of Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, Ron Carter and Tony Williams all together. It’s perfect!

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