Meditation for Gun Control Legislation
I did this meditation and it helped me to feel better. In this meditaiton, we will:
-Send positive energy to Congress in the hopes they pass gun control legislation
-Send intentional energy that all citizens are able to access mental health services
Jazz Therapy Playlist and Musical Commentary
This week, we will celebrate the music of the piano, as it is the birthday of the American pianist Wynton Kelly, as well as the American pianist/composer/arranger, Billy Strayhorn. Both are heroes in the jazz world. It was truly a gift for me to dive deeper into their music to choose the songs for this week.
Emotional Dwelling (To Mirror Your Mood)
“I Got It Bad And That Ain’t Good,” Johnny Hodges with Billy Strayhorn and The Orchestra, Verve, 1962.
This album is stellar, with alto sax player Hodges at the top of his game. Billy Strayhorn is the arranger and the conductor; it is his vision which is brought to life on this album. The song is bluesy and conveys the essence of longing and sadness. This embodies how I feel about the current situation regarding gun control in this country.
Emotional Elevation (To Feel Better)
“Take The A Train,” Ella Fitzgerald Sings The Duke Ellington Songbook, 1957.
Since this tune is an Ellington/Strayhorn composition, I thought we needed none other than Ella to bring us up with her truly fabulous rendition of this song. She sings, she scats, and she soothes our soul. She brings us back to life here. Try listening to this without cracking a smile, snapping your fingers, or moving a little bit, and I will personally buy you an ice cream cone 😊
Emotional Reverie (To Dream and Remember)
“Pfrancing,” Someday My Prince Will Come, Miles Davis, 1951.
This song features Miles on Trumpet, Hank Mobley, and Wynton Kelly on piano. I chose this song since there is something so dreamy about it. It is a Miles original composition. Around the 3min mark, we hear a jovial, ebullient solo from Kelly. Here, he shows us what he can do as a soloist and as a member of this fine grouping.
Emotional Innovation (To Experience Something New)
“I’ve Found A New Baby,” New Faces, New Sounds, Wynton Kelly Piano Interpretations, 1951
I chose this unique piece since it shows off the technical skills of Wynton Kelly, with him playing at a rapid pace with a swingin’ rytthm. It is new and unique sound. I think this is kind of what we need when it comes to gun violence. We need gun control, background checks, more research on gun violence, more access to mental health for everyone, etc (https://www.preventioninstitute.org/focus-areas/preventing-violence-and-reducing-injury/preventing-violence-advocacy) We need SOMETHING NEW.
Jazz Birthdays Each week, we will highlight birthdays of jazz performers around the world. We are grateful they exist! http://jazzbirthdaycalendar.com
Billy Strayhorn, November 29th (November 29, 1915 – May 31, 1967)
One of the unsung heroes and giants of jazz, he was a pianist, composer, arranger, and conductor. He worked closely with Duke Ellington and they were creative co-collaborators. Known to be mild-mannered, his legacy on jazz is immeasurable.
Wynton Kelly, December 2nd (December 2, 1931 – April 12, 1971
This incredible American jazz pianist played with all of the big names in jazz, and passed away tragically at only age 39. He could play in the best ensembles, and hold his own beautifully as a soloist as well.
Call for Poetry
Are you a poet? We are accepting submissions for our weekly “Poetry Play” portion of the “Jazz Therapy” newsletter! Your poem could be about jazz, civil rights, or any current event/theme that might go along with each newsletter. You will get free publicity and appreciative eyes from the readers of “Jazz Therapy!” I haven’t received any submissions yet, but please do reach out!!!
Want to know more? Subscribe to our newsletter