Plenty of genres have anxiety about their relationships to history, but perhaps none more loudly than jazz. The conversation about forward movement vs. reverence of the past is at play constantly, and motivates some of the last year’s most exciting releases by Immanuel Wilkins, Jyoti, Exploding Star Orchestra, even the Sun Ra Arkestra.
The anxiety can feel lighter, though, in the genre’s most progressive corners, be it the International Anthem label from Chicago, or the forward-thinking hip-hop of artists including Pink Siifu and Earl Sweatshirt.
On this week’s Popcast, a conversation about strong recent jazz debuts, the ways in which canon and community can be in tension, and the performers who are looking to innovate in the genre without being beholden to the past.
Giovanni Russonello, who covers jazz for The New York Times
Marcus J. Moore, who writes about music for The New York Times, the Nation and others