Poems About Jazz
The Venn diagram of jazz and poetry has a large intersection in the middle. From the Beat Generation to the present, you’ll find many musicians and poets working together, and many poets taking inspiration from jazz. I thought I’d share a few jazz poems with you, and ask for your suggestions.
Paul Blackburn – “Listening To Sonny Rollins At The Five-Spot”
Langston Hughes – “The Weary Blues”
Jayne Cortez – “If The Drum Is A Woman”
Jack Kerouac – “San Francisco”
There are also Emotional Weather Report, Spare Parts, and Step Right Up by Tom Waits.
Great topic. Here is a few examples of musicians and poets collaborating. I remember Steve Swallow setting some of Robert Creeley’s poems to music in a terrific album, “Home.” Sheila Jordan does the vocals.
Swallow and Creeley have collaborated on several records and live performances and participated in a band called “Courage.” It seems their inspiration was entirely mutual.
Then there was the fairly extensive collaboration between David Murray and Amiri Baraka.
Maybe the first I’d heard of poets and musicians collaborating was Anne Sexton performing her poetry with a band named after one of her poems, “Her Kind.”