Some jazz critics’ views have changed over the decades. But some of them were correct in the first place. The late Joachim-Ernst Berendt is one of the insightful ones. Do I agree with him completely? Of course not. For example, although I think Branford Marsalis is a fine improvisor, I never have heard anything that even hints at profundity from his brother Wynton. So Berendt and I have different views on some matters (unless, of course, the praise for Wynton is coming from co-author Günther Huesmann, rather than Berendt, who died in 2000). But such differences help insure that the world keeps turning. And what fun would it be spending one’s life talking to a mirror?
So we can celebrate the late German jazz critic and his famous evolving jazz history/encyclopedia. And we can contemplate at least some of his astute observations here.
Click on The Durability of The Jazz Book for more commentary.