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November 28, 2005

New Jazz Society Formed in Toronto

Written by
cindy mcleod

Toronto jazz enthusiast Graham Reid has formed the Nu Jazz Society, dedicated to expanding the range of jazz locally and reaching out to a younger audience. The concept focuses on merging a particular facet of jazz with emerging trends such as turntablism and spoken word.

The Jazz by Genre concerts will run quarterly, and will attract jazz fans who want to tap into more modern forms; funk, R&B, house, ‘break jazz’, and live jazz accompanied by a DJ. The series launches Sunday at the Mod Club with a performance by American jazz-funk legend Roy Ayers, a noted vibraphonist with a discography of over 62 titles. Ayers is considered an innovator in the modern live jazz/technology blend.

Roy Ayers
Roy Ayers

“Jazz by Genre began out of a sense of what we have (in Toronto) in terms of a jazz experience here versus what we could have, given the spectrum of jazz out there and the spectrum of diversity we have here,” says Reid, a 30-something media consultant. “What we’re suggesting, even to purists, is that this is a natural progression, given the technology we have today,” Reid says.

The Nu Jazz Society has garnered a strong response, with over 300 members signing up on its website. Reid hopes the society will grow to a point where it can develop its own summer festival. http://www.jazzbygenre.com/

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