The Jazz Theologian

The Jazz Theologian

Improvisation (part 1)

Kirk Byron Jones in his book, The Jazz of Preaching, tells this story about Mr. marsalis

"Wynton Marsalis was playing, "I Don’t Stand a Ghost of a Chance With You," unaccompanied. At the most dramatic point of his conclusion, someone’s cell phone went off." David Hajdu was present and tells what happened next… "

"Marsalis paused for a beat, motionless, and his eybrows arched. I scrawled on a sheet of notepaper, MAGIC, RUINED. The cell-phone offender scooted into the hall as the chatter in the room grew louder. Still frozen at the microphone, Marsalis replayed the silly cell-phone melody note for note. Then he repeated it, and began improvising variations on the tune. The audience slowly came back to him. In a few minutes he resolved the improvisation–which had changed keys once or twice and throttled down to a ballad tempo–and ended up exactly where he had left off: "with…you…" The ovation was tremendous."

Improvisation–an essential skill for any jazz theologian.

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posted February 9, 2007 at 1:19 am

this is genius. i would love to witness something like that; it would give me chills. and it does have great implications for Christ-followers. a simple 5-point plan for “sharing the gospel” can go to crap so easily, so the Christ-follower must embrace whatever tension comes up and ditch the “agenda”… thanks for posting this!

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posted February 11, 2007 at 10:05 pm

Thanks for stopping by!

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