I reached the peak of my musical career in 2008, accompanying 'Jon Faddis with the bongo at the Villa Celimontana Jazz Festival in the execution of Night in Tunisia in a dizzying 6/8 time (documented on YouTube)».
A sweet confession with an understandable ego boost opens Improvisations. Entries for a Dictionary of Jazz and Literature (pp.125 €18), the beautiful essay signed by the journalist and literary critic, Philip La Porta, published by SaintLouis Doc.
Thanks to the agreement with the musician Marcello Rosa, the author has given life to a project entitled prima Jazz spoken, Then Dictionary of Jazz and Literature, weaving a lively weave between jazz and literature, spelling out some fundamental lemmas of our time, from ambiguity to universality, sealing jazz as "an example of good, virtuous globalization", for a genre that aspires to universality, asking "its own public a minimum of cooperation, an additional attention» to be fully understood and appreciated.
With this essay, La Porta suggests analogies and points of contact between jazz and 20th century literature, passing from Potato Head Blues of Armstrong a Ornithology by Charlie Parker, calling into question Jack Kerouac and Céline, iconic writers from a jazz point of view, as talented and free, «misfits and nomads».
How many "Improvisations" that become literature
Essayist and critic — let's remember Pasolini and Sciascia. Last heretics (Marsilio, 2021), Rome is a lie (Laterza, 2014), Get busy (Bompian i, 2016) - La Porta evokes Jean-Claude Izzo (who in the Marseilles trilogy disseminates highly sought-after jazz tracks) and Pier Paolo Pasolini who, in these pages full of suggestions, we see "dialogue" between notes and words with Jelly Roll Morton, Duke Ellington, Miles Davis and John Coltrane. Enhanced by three conversations with Marcello Rosa, Federica Michisanti and Stefano Di Battista, the volume concludes with an elegant Jazz portable poster, defined as a genre that is «current but also refractory to our time», «founded on improvisation and continuous variation, on the unexpected».
Many "Italian novels of today appear so 'approved and prefabricated', writes La Porta, that's why we need jazz, "the most subversive musical genre of the twentieth century" and nonconformist, capable of creating the noir atmosphere à la Chandler, giving us that sensation of danger mentioned by the Chilean Roberto Bolalio, that "running on the edge of a precipice", writing as if our own lives depended on it.