Several weeks ago I attended a birthday party for my friend Ed. He’s an amzing musician who has performed and befriended some of the great names along the spectrum of music. When I arrived at his place I was one of the first guests there. This is probably because of my neurotic impulse to be on time, or as my critics would say, social anxiety. Whatever the case, I noticed an older woman sitting at the dining room table. Ed introduced her as Lodi. Unbeknownst to me I was sitting in the presence of the great Lodi Carr.
Lodi Carr; for those unfamiliar, is an amazing jazz singer who has performed with some of the best musicians in the genre for nearly 60 years. She started attending and performing at clubs in Detroit in the late 1940’s, eventually relocating to NYC, where she earned a solo gig at a club called Page Three. Her most famous release was her 1960 LP, entitled “Lady Bird.”
Although many people may not be familiar with her name, it’s her voice, soul, passion and love for what she does that permeates out of the ampilfiers and into your heart. The untapped life knowledge that she possessed seemed to mimic an endless well. Her stories divulged a certain invisible truth that compelled me to revisit the jazz genre and tonal gems of eras past.
Music today encompasses an unlimited array of genres, categories, sub-categories, protos and levels; enough so, that it would take a lifetime over just to listen to every song recorded or performed. Although the mainstream industry often offers a scarce plate of auditory sweets, avid listeners through the use of endless websites can now provide the masses with music otherwise kept to the niche circles. Maybe you don’t consider jazz to be your thing. But…how do you really know? New York City has numerous jazz clubs that offer a great experience, guaranteed to convince you to make a new iTunes purchase. Even if your prejudged disposition is too hard to shake you can at least pretend to enjoy the musical composition for the sake of false sophistication. Oh and don’t forget to straddle your copy of the New Yorker under your arm… and remember you work in finance… or was that the date last week?
The point of this jumbled soliloquy is to gain new, younger fans to a genre that has plenty to offer. Jazz lounges in the city usually host performances every evening, sometimes even two separate performances throughout the day. There’s much to be said about the musical talent of Count Basie, Miles Davis, Robert Fripp and more modern acts like Mike Phillips. Music is a universal language and a true window into one’s subconscious, as well as a hidden relationship we share with a span of mammals in the animal kingdom.
Below are several jazz lounges and clubs for a weary listener’s journey!
The Rose Bar at The Plaza
Fifth Avenue at Central Park South
New York, NY 10019
Wednesday and Thursdays are live Jazz nights in this former Perisian Room that hosted great performers like Kay Thompson and Duke Ellington.
Smoke Jazz & Supper Club-Lounge
And, of course…
Jazz at Lincoln Center
Broadway at 60th Street
Twisted Talk: Are you into jazz? What’s your favorite spot in the city to enjoy jazz music? If you’re not, are you willing to give it a shot? Discuss below!