1) What do you think of the picture it paints, with music as an expression of political consciousness? Is it a convincing case? Do you think the argument about the development and the "death" of jazz proved accurate?
Jazz is a musical expression of an underclass, African American's. It is a political expression of consciousness. I feel this statement to be true especially for its initial conception. An expression of strife, conflict, sorrow, joy, rebellion against suppression segregation and a change in society. Thus I feel it is a convincing case that jazz is a political expression of consciousness
I don't feel the case of the death of jazz is linked to the 'negro' death in an American culture. I feel like jazz turned into an enveloping expression for all downtrodden, excited, peripheral folk. white, black, all races. I feel that jazz is still happening. I feel like jazz has morphed over the years, but it will never die.
2) What parts of the film do you find effective? What parts do you find ineffective?
I really enjoyed the street scene in the initial explanation of jazz. the beats, the music the people congregating. it felt alive and intimately connected to a 'human beat' that yes, was sorrowful because of racist segregation, but had potential energetically in the music that seemed hopeful. And to a certain degree was.
3) Do you think this film is still relevant today? Or is it mainly a snapshot of a remote historical moment?
I think aspects of the film are relevant today, maybe substitute a different race, gender, political stance. you may even substitute the music genre for what jazz started in the music community to express more than just a harmony or background music. It started a sense of expression that was not apologetic toward offending or exciting people.