jazz & blues music blog with news, reviews, concerts & more, with a Canadian focus

December 29, 2005

Canadian Jazz Journalist Mark Miller

Written by
cindy mcleod

Canada says goodbye to its foremost jazz journalist Mark Miller today as he retires from his post at the Globe and Mail after 27 years. Readers will see his final installment in today’s paper, with his last CD review printed Friday past.

A Canadian icon of the jazz journalism world, Miller wrote over 5,500 reviews and stories about the genre during his tenure at the august newspaper. He is also an esteemed published author on the subject, with his books The Miller Companion to Jazz in Canada, Boogie, Pete the Senator, Such Melodious Racket, and Cool Blues regarded as the most significant books on the topic in Canadian history. Miller is also well known for his photographic portraits.

Miller’s journalism career began in Alberta at the Edmonton Journal, where he covered the first Jazz City Festival over a quarter century ago. He left the Journal to take his post at the Globe and Mail, and has continued illuminating the jazz scene with his informative articles ever since.

What makes Mr. Miller so special to Canadians is that his inspired works showcased not only the great masters (many of them from south of the border and Europe), but also lesser-known but equally essential Canadian artists. He single-handedly shone the spotlight on many up and coming artists who’ve gone on to become household names, and celebrated the Canadian masters who carved the future with their contributions, no small feat given that the genre is at best a small portion of the music market. Miller has known all along how vital our cultural identity is, how large a role jazz music plays in the definition of the Canadian character, and how important it is to document the genre in print for future generations.

Miller leaves his job at the paper to write more books, and although a great loss to journalism in Canada, we will all continue to benefit from his work as our chief chronicler of jazz.

Thank you for giving us all the opportunity to learn and celebrate the enormous talent of our nation, Mr. Miller, we anticipate the future knowing your pen will continue to record and inform us about our beloved muse. You, sir, are as woven into the fabric of Canadian jazz as our most revered musicians.

Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.