Tuesday, September 25, 2007

black and blue and green

“It’s getting almost so bad a colored man hasn’t got any country,” a furious Mr. [Louis] Armstrong told him. President Eisenhower, he charged, was “two faced,” and had “no guts.” For Governor Faubus, he used a double-barreled hyphenated expletive, utterly unfit for print. The two settled on something safer: “uneducated plow boy.” The euphemism, Mr. Lubenow says, was far more his than Mr. Armstrong’s.

Mr. Armstrong bitterly recounted some of his experiences touring in the Jim Crow South. He then sang the opening bar of “The Star-Spangled Banner,” inserting obscenities into the lyrics and prompting Velma Middleton, the vocalist who toured with Mr. Armstrong and who had joined them in the room, to hush him up.
- David Margolick, "The Day Louis Armstrong Made Noise"
But music written solely for the comfort of its audience is equally irrelevant. Pushing ethnic buttons as a form of quick access to the worshiper’s attention is only advertising.
- Bernard Holland, "Does Simple Music Form Simple Faith?"
I feel that there will always be CDs. It's hard to imagine, when I play a concert and we have a CD signing afterwards, the day when there won't be anything to sign. It's hard to imagine something that costs $10, but you can't see or feel it. It's hard to imagine that such a thing will hold its value.
- David Finckel (Emerson Quartet cellist, Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center co-artistic director), in David Patrick Stearns, "Classical fans must give in to downloads"