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Salient. An Organ of Student Opinion at Victoria College, Wellington, N.Z. Vol. 17, No. 1. March 4, 1953

Jazz Valid..

Jazz Valid...

It must appear then, that even if a person dislikes jazz he must admit that it is a musical form as valid as the classics so loved by the gentlemen with the long hair.

Robert Coffin expresses the point this way: "In classical music, the composer is the prime element—In jazz, it is the musician." But both forms are founded on sincere emotional experience.

Critics find it hard to agree perfectly on a comprehensive and limiting definition of jazz, but all without exception are sure of one thing. When Andre Coeuroy says: "Improvised Jazz is the most potent force in music at the present time." he is not referring to the syrupy product which exudes from the radio like molasses out of a tin on a hot day and the amount of skilful and scornful invective which men like Hughes Panassie and Charles Delauney pour on commercial music easily surpasses the pronouncements of classical critics for sheer ferocity.

Popular music la more stereotyped mass of warm yeast which has impregnated itself into every nook and cranny of our society. It is present as a commercial product for which clever men have created a demand, and having created it spend vast amounts of money to ensure that the demand will never wane. They have bought genius and talent, which are bent solely to the purpose of creating new variations on a theme. The product sells well and the result—more money.

Popular music is more sterotyped than a block of tenement houses. Twenty-four hours of the day it is "plugged" by disc jockeys, radio stations, hit parades and publishing houses. It is with us and is part of our society—like "True Romances," and the "B" grade "quickies," and as long as there is a demand for it popular music as it is today will never disappear.