Gianni Savelli


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History of Jazz in 400 words

The cultures of West Africa and Europe, forced to a painful encounter after centuries of foreignness, gave life to one of the most extraordinary musical expressions in the history of art: Jazz. After moving its first steps in Louisiana, where the Afro-Americans learned to play trumpet, trombone, clarinet and then saxophone, the musical instruments that represent at the best its poetics; Jazz music grew up in Chicago, the big industrial city in Illinois, for then landing in New York City, of which it became the symbol. During the course of the last century Jazz reflected the main issues crossing the American society: the racial discrimination, the Wall Street collapse of 1929, the frictions between the different communities emigrated in the new continent... Jazz Music, the most important contribution of the US to the 20th century culture belongs in equal terms to the blacks and to the whites, including the emigrant groups of different origin: the anglo-saxons, the italians the latin americans. This art form has been the first one to be born and to have developed in parallel with modern industrial technologies like the radio and the subsequent recording and reproduction devices. Very often, its musical forms were adapted to the technologies of the moment. In seventy years a very rapid evolution granted Jazz music with the same respect as that given to european music after four centuries of history.

Nowadays Jazz is not a specific musical genre, rather it is an overall approach to music. Three elements seem to be pregnant in defining this attitude. First af all, along with a great expertise in instrumental proficiency and a deep familiarity with tradition, a jazz musician has a strong will to find an individual sound, a voice of his own to tell his own story. Secondly, a dynamic and driving conception of rhythm. Starting out from the 'swing feeling' as it was defined at the beginnings, the jazz musician strives to apply the same sentiment in different musical contexts. Last but not least, the musical improvisation. Thanks to improvisation any performance results in something unrepeatable, the unique expression of the life moment as depicted by the artistic gesture.

Since the very beginnings Jazz has been capable of receiving and incorporating any kind of musical expression it has approached. Today it is continuing along the same path, looking at the entire world as a source of inspiration.

Press & Blog

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1 February 2017

la musica come esplorazione • radici nel mondo intervista gianni savelli

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7 April 2016

gianni savelli media res: alla scoperta dell’uomo attraverso la musica (by ilaria ferri)

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14 March 2016

‘gianni savelli media res magellano’ di f.ciminiera su jazz convention

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31 January 2016

from ‘A proposito di Jazz’ by Gerlando Gatto

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