For over a century, jazz music has continued to be a living, breathing entity. To date, the music itself has defended itself admirably against those self-appointed guardians of last year's blues who would compartmentalize jazz as swing, bebop, cool, avant-garde, etc. Rather than hearing jazz as a sequence of separate styles, it is important to hear its continuity across time. Jazz is always on the cusp, always searching, always ready to incorporate a new discovery into the body of work that preceded it. There is no radical break between swing and bebop, between bebop and cool, between the early New Orleans styles and the avant-garde group improvisations of the 1960s. The music exists on a continuum.
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