Another joke doesn't pan out


"No one with government funds to dispense has done more to bring jazz to American audiences than Dana Gioia, chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts," begins Nat Hentoff, in this Wall Street Journal column.

I was going to say you could leave out the "with government funds to dispense" part because when people are given a choice they don't choose jazz, but what do you know: Sales of jazz music have been on the rise lately. Admittedly, jazz sales are up the way flag burnings are down, but still… Rock on, jazz fans, whoever you are.

Jim Henley sang an ode to Gioia last year, and Kerry Howley ran afoul of critic Stanley Crouch the year before that. Back when Ken Burns' miniseries Jazz was bebopping a nation to sleep, Chuck Freund blew hot riffs.