15 February 2011

Esperanza

It's 3:00AM. I've been burning it long and low for weeks trying to finish my dissertation before my program ejects me, which it has threatened, nay, promised to do in April. But tomorrow, after years of work, I submit.

But that's not what has me excited today. More that two years ago I posted on Esperanza Spalding, a very talented bassist and a jazz prodigy. She's on my short list of genius ├╝berartists who will always inspire me, but will never be popular. Past a certain point, creativity usually becomes prohibitive of popularity. It's transgressive and challenging, and that's not the stuff of entertainment.

But if any of my ├╝berartists is going to win hearts and fans, it would be Esperanza. She really works hard to cross over to non-jazz people, and has kilowatt charisma. And tonight she really broke out big, winning the Grammy for Best New Artist (NYT). (New? After three albums?) Apparently this was a bit of a surprise, "the first jazz musician to receive the award in decades, if not ever." She beat out Justin Bieber and was not riding the wave of a hit album.

People just love her, as a person and as a musician. And sometimes the great, banal beast of the Recording Academy just rolls over and gives a great artist her due. Esperanza, congrats.

3 comments:

Mister Fweem said...

Congrats to you on submitting your dissertation. We wish you the best of luck.

carl g said...

Thanks! BTW, did you know that I'm now locked out of you blog? When I click to go to it, I get the message, "This blog is open to invited readers only." Have you closed it to the public?

Mister Fweem said...

Sorry. I had to close it for a while as I sorted through some potential issues. It's now open again to the public.