gerry_mulligan_quartet_what_is_there_to_say-CL1307-1141987385.jpeg
I often buy LPs based on the merits of their liner notes, and that's exactly why I rescued Gerry Mulligan's 1958 record, What Is There

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Gerry Mulligan: "All the Super-Intellectualizing on the Technics of Jazz . . . Is Spoiling the Fun"

gerry_mulligan_quartet_what_is_there_to_say-CL1307-1141987385.jpeg
I often buy LPs based on the merits of their liner notes, and that's exactly why I rescued Gerry Mulligan's 1958 record, What Is There to Say? from the bargain bins at Everyday Music this weekend. Something about his not-so-subtle swipe at the critical establishment (full liner notes after the jump) struck a chord.

So if the critics haven't got everyone scared with a lot of high-flown technical talk and Jack Kerouac hasn't got everyone impressed with the beauties of numbness and hipness for hipness' sake, maybe we could launch a little enthusiasm and restore fun to its rightful place in jazz.

It's taking me a bit longer to get into the record, but I'll keep trying.

Gerry Mulligan:

What is there to say? Actually, there's no need to say very much on cover notes beyond the names of the songs and the players. (I like to see the dates of the recordings also, myself.) But I notice a lot of jazz albums these days (some of my own included) whose notes go pretty far afield, with hardly a mention about what's inside (sometimes no mention at all).

I will now go far afield.

Jazz music is fun to me. All music can be fun for that matter, but what I mean is we usually have a hell of a good time playing and listening to each other.

But some of the people who do the most talking about jazz (that may even be the basic problem, right there!) don't seem to get any real fun out of listening to it. It seems to me that all the super-intellectualizing on the technics of jazz and the lack of response to the emotion and meaning of jazz is spoiling the fun for listeners and players alike.

So if the critics haven't got everyone scared with a lot of high-flown technical talk and Jack Kerouac hasn't got everyone impressed with the beauties of numbness and hipness for hipness' sake, maybe we could launch a little enthusiasm and restore fun to its rightful place in jazz.

Now, inside this jacket is a record (or should be!) into which we (meaning the Quartet and the people from Columbia) put a great deal of work to make as good an album as we could. And at the risk of sounding indecent, I'd like to say we all had a lot of fun making it.

Now we just hope you have a share in our fun.

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