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.


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charlotte lang

Swiss/Dutch saxophonist Charlotte Lang was born in 1996 in Basel and studied the bachelor and master program at the JAZZCAMPUS Basel under the guidance of Domenic Landolf and Daniel Blanc. She is currently studying the Master of Music in Global Jazz at the Berklee College of Music in Boston under the artistic direction of Danilo Pérez. In addition she is part of Terri Lyne Carrington’s Berklee Institute of Jazz and Gender Justice.


From 2015 to 2018, Charlotte she was a member of the Swiss National Youth Jazz Orchestra under the direction of Christian Muthspiel. Since 2020, she became a member of the German National Youth Jazz Orchestra (Bundesjazzorchester Deutschland), under the direction of Niels Klein and Ansgar Striepens. She also plays is the Austrian FJO (Frauen Jazz Orchester→Women Jazz Orchestra of Austria).


In 2021, Charlotte founded her own Quintet the „Charlotte Lang Group“, for what she is composing, arranging and booking. In the fall 2023, her first album will be recorded and hopefully released by a renowned label.


Charlotte plays in the “Swiss Jazz Orchestra” and the “Zurich Jazz Orchestra”, the two professional Big Bands of Switzerland.

Charlotte recently got the unique opportunity to write a monthly blog for the Swiss Jazz & Blues Magazine called JAZZTIME, to tell readers about her time at abroad and specifically her time at Berklee. Her graduate program lasts only until the summer of 2023. She hopes to stay in the United States to enlarge her network and build her musical career.