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Jazz and Race
stripe is generally white, while tenor sax men of the "hard bop** type are colored (yet Buddy Collette, for one, certainly must be classified in the cool group). The arrangers, of whom John Lewis typifies the newer, more scholarly approach, tend to have absorbed so many influences from European music that to classify them racially would be absurdly impractical. Dixieland music to some extent has been preempted by white musicians of the Condon school.
I have cited these examples merely to show a few tendencies, from which it would be dangerous to infer any generalizations. In every chapter of this book other than the present one I have avoided racial labeling, save in instances where it seemed completely and essentially relevant to the facts, mostly with regard to early developments in the days when jazz was indeed segregated.
If jazz has a choice between losing its force of character and identity and maintaining its dual nature as a product of two segĀ­regated racial styles, it would be better for society, and for the musician himself, were jazz to perish. Fortunately this prospect seems most unlikely to present itself, for as civilization progresses and society comes to accept what it hears purely on the basis of its esthetic content, and without racial or national stigmas or labels on either side, it will evolve into a third major stage in its development: jazz, originally the music of the American Negro and the American white, now simply the music of the American, will become more than ever a music of the human being, echoed wherever in the world its voice has been heard.