Teaching Jazz, Teaching Justice, and the Blackness of Don Cherry’s Global Communion

Educator resources

Join Paul N. Roth, a musician and scholar whose work touches jazz, popular and improvised musics, Black study, critical theory, and arts and community advocacy for this informative session that proposes trumpeter/multi-instrumentalist Don Cherry as a pedagogical coordinate for approaching globally expansive jazz studies and social justice perspectives. Central are Cherry’s philosophies on universality – at once musical, spiritual, and ethical – and the ways jazz functions as “glue” within his broad musical/geographic scope. While explicitly cosmopolitan, jazz here is anchored in its particular lineages of Black radical aesthetics (the blues, the necessity for improvisation and syncretism, etc.) and as such offers nuanced frames around Black universalities; those prefiguring and emerging through capaciousness of jazz’s wide trajectories yet firmly situated in race, history, power, and the seemingly impossible ideal of a more loving, equitable, compassionate world. The totality of Cherry’s breadth – musical and otherwise – both troubles the “universalism” of inherited philosophical (Western) consensus and provides compelling directions for how practitioners and educators alike can think and support a growing jazz globality that still centers ethical imperatives of the music’s histories and embedded potentials.



A presentation from the Jazz Education Research and Practice Journal, a publication of the Jazz Education Network.




JEN Members will receive a link 1-hour prior to the start of the event to join the Zoom room.

Non-members will receive a link to watch on Facebook Live. To join the Zoom room (and interact live with the presenter), you must be a JEN member.


Click here for membership info.


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