Let the great music be heard!
Sunday will be the listening experience of the summer. Dr. Bill Banfield and Jazz Urbane will be performing at the Unitarian Universalist Church, starting at 12:15 p.m., following his 11 a.m. lecture for the Monadnock Summer Lyceum.
Banfield’s 11 a.m. lecture will be on the topic of “The Crisis of Music Culture Today: What Are the Songs We Need to Hear?”
I listen to lots of different music throughout my day. Usually I listen while I drive — to stay awake; for background when I am working, and to soothe me as I go to sleep. My music ranges from early rock-and-roll in the morning to get me moving, to slow jazz in the afternoon to keep my focused, and on to the gentleness of Vivaldi as I go to sleep.
Music lovers who I speak to tell me they have similar listening patterns, even if their choices of a particular music genre are different from mine. The commonality is the joy we all get from music. Yet, of late, music has been given seat way in the back of the culture bus. Instead of incorporating music into as many aspects of our lives as possible, including that of education, we shut it off, shut it out, or shut into a tiny fraction of a day. This needs to change.
Banfield is the man to start this happening. Bob Blumenthal, a noted member of the Jazz Journalists Association, stated that, “... Banfield took cues from Ellington’s notion that music fell into only one of two categories, the more notable of which was “good.” I agree, Banfield is very good; and the band’s fusion of jazz and pop co-exists in a very productive way because they are grounded in real songs. The reality, sophistication, and expression of this tremendous musical experience are all expressed in Banfield’s band Jazz Urbane.
We do not often get the chance to have this level of music on a summer Sunday and I am expecting a very entertaining and informative morning. I do want to note, however, that while the lecture and concert are free, the Monadnock Lyceum Committee has indicated that a $5 donation would be greatly appreciated to help offset costs.
Elaine Holden of Peterborough is a nationally recognized expert in the diagnosis and treatment of dyslexia. She is the director of The Reading Foundation and Senior Lecturer at Rivier College Graduate School of Education.