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Jazz from Socialist Realism to Postmodernism


Edited By Yvetta Kajanová, Gertrud Pickhan and Rüdiger Ritter

In the 20th century, jazz was an important artistic form. Depending on the particular European country, jazz music carried different social, political and aesthetic meanings. It brought challenges in the areas of racial issues, the politics of the Cold War between East and West, and in the exploration of boundaries of artistic freedom. In socialist Czechoslovakia, Yugoslavia, Hungary and Poland, the situation began to change after 1956 and then 1968, when the ideologists shifted from the aesthetics of socialist realism to postmodernism. In Western countries such as France and Italy, jazz transformed from a modern to a postmodern period. This volume deals with the impact of these changes on the career development of jazz musicians – even beyond 1989 – in terms of various phenomena such as emigration, child prodigies, multiculturalism, multi-genre approaches, or female jazz musicians.

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The Emergence of the Nordic Concept as a Precursor of Emancipation and Slovak-Scandinavian Relations (1950–1970)


Abstract: From the mutual interactions between American and Scandinavian jazz the Scandinavian jazz school originated, which has been developing archetypal principles and has belonged to important components of world jazz ever since. It gradually crossed the borders of Scandinavia. The School has built upon original cool jazz principles.

The jazz trends in the early 1950s demonstrated that the concept of American cool jazz was inspirational for the Swedish scene, and sound aura and atmosphere of music by Lennie Tristano, Miles Davis, Stan Getz, and Paul Desmond were in tune with the Nordic feeling. The so-called “Nordic sound” originated and developed in a personal symbiosis with world-known American musicians, and little by little, due to the systematic endeavour of the label ECM (Edition of Contemporary Music) namely since the 1970s, it has been incessantly the example of the relation of glocalization and globalization.

Stuart Nicholson points out that the phenomenon of Nordic jazz (“the Nordic tone” in jazz) needs to be incorporated into a wider context of Scandinavian culture.1 The 1951 stay of American tenor saxophonist Stan Getz in Sweden represented the principle outer impulse for the Nordic sound. ← 73 | 74 → While touring Scandinavia for several weeks, Getz engaged then 18-year old Bengt Hallberg to play with his first Scandinavian group. In the same year, they recorded a jazz version of the Swedish song Ack Värmeland du sköna2. The publishers renamed it Dear Old Stockholm, the title under which the piece was recorded...

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