Bet you can’t do this: shuffle your ipod for the listening ears of others around you without fear; as in, never be embarrassed to share your music library with other people; as in, let not one song you own turn your cheeks red regardless of who hears it. If you can do that, although it’s a minor achievement it means you’re different than some. Unless you listen exclusively to jazz because then it doesn’t count. One does not greet the plate or act bravely by sharing the sounds of jazz. Meanwhile as thirty seconds of a rap song has a mother in middle America irked with moral outrage, if not brilliant to some, jazz otherwise pipes noises into ears yet renders brains affectless to its sounds. Why is that so, or what gives with jazz, you may ask. Well, there’s no words of course. That’s what it is. No words. Let it be known that wordless jazz evokes less accountability for the listener than music with lyrics. Dispute that only if you’re a nerd. Barely hip in a campy high school nerd kind of way, playing jazz will likely get you cool points with someone, as in they’ll say, “gee, look at this quirky whimsical fellow,” but statistically speaking, comparatively no one alive will want to hear it. I for one find jazz can be pretty good so I’ll go less far than to say that, but it is the safest music to pair with oneself that’s out there, unlike Britney Spears as a common straight male twenty something: a real balls tester for said men to keep cool and not press skip in shame while surrounded by their homeboys or what have you.
Discomfort inducing as well: rap in front of black people as a white person. Frequently that’s the case for white people who must awkwardly lower the volume at a red light when any black person pulls up beside them and their own chosen black musician is dropping n-bombs on the stereo. Ruffle their white feathers it will do. But is jazz brave to play in any context? No. Jazz doesn’t count.