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I presume Jason Parker has "Accentuate The Positive" in his repertoire. Above: Chris Botti.
I presume Jason Parker has "Accentuate The Positive" in his repertoire. Above: Chris Botti. Neilson Barnard/Getty Images
If you're a committed jazz fan, you've usually seen enough to develop some cynicism about certain aspects of our fair art. Not trumpeter Jason Parker, whose blog takes an unrelentingly positive view of everything jazz related. His thoughts are always well-organized and infused with glass-half-full cheeriness. Basically, he is the motivational speaker of the Jazz Internet.
Anyway, he recently attended a Chris Botti show and had 13 good things to say about it. You could call Botti a smooth jazz trumpeter, or at least the sort of cat who is nominated for Best Pop Instrumental Album Grammys. (Parker is what you might call a straight-ahead, or mainstream jazz trumpeter.) I've seen Botti live, and it's not my bag — but there are a lot more lovers than haters. As Parker points out, he carries around a band with A-list talent — Billy Childs, Geoff Keezer, Mark Whitfield, Tim Lefebvre, Billy Kilson, etc. — and they all actually seem to enjoy the gig for more than the paycheck. Is this true? Have I got this cat all wrong? Will this blog now be overwhelmed by hardcore Chris Botti fans calling me ignorant with multiple exclamation points? [One Working Musician: 13 Things I Learned at the Chris Botti Show]