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Digital Wynton

With the launch of, the prolific trumpeter and composer Wynton Marsalis (pictured) has expanded his already far-reaching influence to the World Wide Web. The Web site, which became available on June 3, takes the form of a city block. Web surfers are transported to a virtual Main Street, offering insight into the music and mind of Marsalis. Within each building lies an interactive environment in which visitors can wander the corridors, clicking on any particular point of interest. Interested fans can browse such locales as Knozz Mo’s corner store, which, when construction is finished on August 1, will stock CDs, videos, special memorabilia and digital sheet-music transcriptions of Marsalis’ most celebrated works, available only online. Knozz Mo’s has an entirely comprehensive collection, even allowing visitors to obtain a complete list of recordings featuring any of the sidemen who have performed with Marsalis during his 20-year career. Another stop is the Aural Oasis Jazz Club, where one can hear exclusive audio streams of the Wynton Marsalis Septet on the road. The Web site is the only place fans can hear these recordings, which will come fresh from the group’s current U.S. tour. If that’s not enough Wynton for you, dial up WNTN-XM satellite radio, which is also housed at the Web site, where Marsalis’ vast body of recorded work can be heard 24/7.

Other features of the Web site are as follows:

The Cityscape Gallery: A 360-degree interactive display featuring an extensive archive of rare photos, posters and memorabilia.

Marsalis University: Contemplate “Wyntonian” philosophy and view the honorary degrees conferred upon Marsalis. Also will offer streaming recordings of lectures Marsalis has given over the years, as well as online master classes.

Grandma’s House: Chat with Wynton’s grandmother about everything you wanted know about Marsalis’ life, career and personal views.

Hopefully, for Mr. Marsalis’ sake, the Web site launch was not an omen of things to come. The Web site launch party on June 3 was supposed to feature live audio and video streaming of a by-invitation-only Wynton Marsalis Septet performance at the Jazz Standard in New York City. However, the connection was lost in the middle of a demonstration of the new site. Marsalis joked about the technical glitch: “This music is going to work!”

Originally Published