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JT Notes: On Movies, Jazz and Jake LaMotta

As you might surmise from how the words “jazz,” “film” and “Hollywood” appear in different arrangements no less than 38,000 times throughout it, this edition of JT is concerned with when and where jazz crops up in the movies. In all the “jazz is/isn’t dead” tomfoolery, a rare discussion is one that realizes jazz-like classical music-finds its largest audience whenever it mingles with film. And as with any fusion of jazz and a popular medium, the public fawns and the jazzbos bemoan.

In this issue we have roundups on jazz cameo performances, a William Claxton photo collection, stories on the legendary jazz-centered film composers, an expectedly astute piece by Nate Chinen on jazz biopics, and an interview with the guy who has infiltrated more packed multiplexes with swing and bop than anyone, Clint Eastwood. The odd man out here is Woody Allen, the greatest writer/director/actor/Dixieland clarinetist who ever lived.

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Originally Published

Evan Haga

Evan Haga worked as an editor and writer at JazzTimes from 2006 to 2018. He is currently the Jazz Curator at TIDAL, and his writing has appeared at RollingStone.com, NPR MusicBillboard and other outlets.