Thursday, January 3, 2013

JEN Conference 2013 Part 1

Some of you probably remember the IAJE, otherwise known as the International Association of Jazz Educators. They put on a convention every year in various locations around the U.S. I performed and participated in many of them throughout the years. Unfortunately, the IAJE as an organization went belly up due to some controversial mismanagement( or so I heard). Something has popped up to replace it: JEN, or Jazz Education Network. I'm heading down to their convention, a 4 day affair at the Atlanta Hyatt Regency. It appears to be more education oriented than the IAJE, which was a nice mix of education and performance related events.

My memories of the IAJE in New York, which was probably the last time I attended, my biggest impression was that it was a real shmooze-fest. It seemed like a networking bonanza; it was hard to focus on any one person, because within seconds, someone you hadn't seen in years would pop into your field of vision. What in one sense could be like being a jazz kid in a jazz candy store could easily after a few hours become a sensory overload. (At least for me, I'm more of an introvert. I'm sure some people feast on the social explosion like a smorgasbord....)

I'll be part of a panel on Jazz Blogging, joined by Earl MacDonald and David Valdez, both equally formidable bloggers. Hopefully, it will make for an interesting discussion. I'm curious to see what motivates others to blog. I think I mostly do it for myself, but admittedly, it is cool to know that I have regular readers. I'm trying to keep this thing going, despite the distractions of full time University teaching, touring, and parenting.

We'll be there in The Learning Center at 1pm on Saturday. I hope to see you there! And I'm excited to report on my observations of the JEN Conference 2013. Here is a link to the schedule:

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