Letter from the Director

John Gilbreath smiling in front of jazz art poster

John Gilbreath photo by Bill Uznay.

Jazz History is Now

Jazz provides a good context for thinking about history. Jazz thrives in that tension between the past and the future. While striving for the “sound of surprise,” every new note carries the blueprint of jazz history. For some, jazz is only a thing of the past. Others are eager to move on. The music enjoys both perspectives.

We’re excited to be approaching the unveiling of our massive archival project: creating an accessible, searchable, and comprehensive digital history of 37 years of this Earshot Jazz magazine. As much as we talk about this monthly magazine being a living history of one of the most vibrant jazz communities in the country, the body of that history is finally ready to be dealt with as a whole. Available to everyone! Complete details will be ready for you in next month’s issue. We’re grateful to the Seattle Public Library for working with us to create this archive, and to the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation for funding the overall project. We can’t wait to share it with you.

It’s been fun for me to have one foot in the past these last few months. I don’t tend to dwell there often. Between the ongoing access to few hundred back issues of Earshot Jazz, and my thorough enjoyment of Jay Thomas’s new book, Life and Jazz Stories, I’ve been spending a fair amount of time visiting the unvarnished past. The rich history of Seattle’s jazz legacy is actively unfolding right now. I hope you’ll join us in assuring that it’s as good a story as it can be.

We appreciate your financial support during the recent GiveBIG campaign and now, during our spring fund drive. If you haven’t had a chance to support your favorite nonprofit organizations, please take a minute to consider those qualities of life that you value, and how your financial support, in any amount, directly impacts the nonprofits that work to bring those things to your life. You can find information on our back page on how to get involved as a member/donor; use the QR Code or go online to earshot.org.

Thank you so much!



Posted on

June 1, 2021