Monday, August 27, 2007

Jazz Is Black Music

The Negro musician is a reflection of the Negro people as a social phenomenon. His purpose ought to be to liberate America aesthetically and socially from its inhumanity. The inhumanity of the white American to the black American, as well as the inhumanity of the white American to the white American, is not basic to America and can be exorcised. I think the Negro people through the force of their struggles are the only hope of saving America, the political or cultural America.
Culturally, America is a backward country; Americans are backward. But jazz in American reality-total reality. ...Some whites seem to think they have a right to jazz. Perhaps that's true, but they should feel thankful for jazz. It has been a gift that the Negro has given, but [whites] can't accept that -there are too many problems involved with the social and historical relationship of the two peoples. It makes it difficult for them to accept jazz and the Negro as its true innovator.

-Archie Shepp

Just like Kung Fu is Chinese. Just like tacos are Mexican. Just like naan is Indian...