Winnipeg's Jazz Magazine


Waging Peace

Written by:
One of the most precious things that we possess is our innocence. We lost a lot of it in Connecticut last month. Let’s hope that it’s the tipping point that launches us into a society that understands how utterly ridiculous it is to interpret the US Constitution’s second amendment as the right to stockpile assault weapons.

I pray for tolerance to reign in 2013. I pray for peace. I pray that we intensify our efforts to create a society that values art and beauty and aesthetic appreciation over violence and hatred.

I dedicate this magazine to the innocence we lost on December 14, 2012, and to the Greenes as they shoulder the unbearable.

The Rent Party last November 15 was a huge success. I want to personally take this opportunity to thank all of you dig! magazine fans for the tremendous outpouring of support that we received that night. The funds we raised, along with grants and ad sales, will ensure that we can deliver yet another year of informative and editorial discourse regarding the burgeoning jazz culture here in Winnipeg.

When I first dreamed up dig! magazine in the fall of 2004, I wanted it to reflect the growth and well-being of our jazz community, to help musicians coordinate their events and attract interested listeners, to inform people about who’s who and what’s what in the world of jazz as it intersects with Winnipeg’s jazz community, and to inspire creative connections between jazz artists and all the other artists in this city.

Here we are, into our ninth year of production, and I’m excited to see that those goals are still vital. Bonus: we’ve discovered that there’s a healthy jazz scene here in Winnipeg!

Jazz continues to be a particularly relevant art form because it promotes social tolerance while giving the practitioner access to a modern and critical way to approach many musical styles. Jazz offers a kind of instruction kit for community-building, an effect that’s becoming increasingly apparent here in the Jazz Capital of Canada.

In that way, Winnipeg is part of a world trend. In 2011 UNESCO designated jazz as its official music because they believe that jazz breaks down barriers and creates opportunities for mutual understanding and tolerance. According to UNESCO’s research:

• Jazz stimulates intercultural dialogue and empowers young people from marginalized societies;

• Jazz fosters gender equality;

• Jazz reinforces the role youth play for social change;

• Jazz encourages artistic innovation, improvisation, new forms of expression, and inclusion of traditional music forms into new ones.

Winnipeg has seen a cultural renaissance in the last ten years. We like to think that dig! magazine has played a role in that revitalization, and been a catalyst for what’s become a thriving jazz scene. To our readers, our sponsors, our advertisers, and our great circle of jazz musicians: thank you for supporting the little magazine that could. Thank you for supporting dig!

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