Another Marketing Lesson from the Jazz World

Posted on August 29, 2010. Filed under: Communications, Entertainment, Inbound Marketing, Jazz, Marketing, Public Relations Marketing, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , |


Read on to see why today’s tune is “I Didn’t Know What Time It Was” from the new CD “Spiral” by Dr. Lonnie Smith. You can purchase it at your local music store or at www.palmetto-records.com.

As anyone who reads/listens to this blog knows, I’m blown away by jazz. Over the decades I’ve attended countless gigs, jams and festivals. I can’t remember one that wasn’t in some way joyful. Every once in awhile, though, a particular performance stands out from the rest for one reason or another.

Last weekend my darling Jeff surprised me with a Saturday night in New York City to hear the legendary Hammond B-3 organ player Dr. Lonnie Smith play tunes from his new album “Spiral”. Jeff knows I adore the gritty, soulful sound of the B-3 — a throwback to the fifties and sixties.

 "Dr Lonnie Liston Smith - Spiral"

Now, I’ve heard ‘The Doctor’ many times over the years playing with a who’s who of jazz greats. I knew I’d be in for a sweet hour of music. But this performance reached a particularly exciting level.

Why? The seasoned veteran rounded out a classic jazz organ trio with two incredible young side men – Jamire Williams on drums and Jonathan Kreisberg on guitar. The results of this collaboration across generations – both on the new CD and live — are stunning!

Dr. Smith brought to the stage his deep knowledge of jazz improvisation, and of its roots in gospel and the blues. Williams and Kreisberg brought the dexterity and stamina of youth – along with a bag of fresh ideas. They all brought open minds — the desire and ability to listen to each other with attention and respect.

I’ve never heard ‘The Doctor’ sound better! The huge grin on his face showed elation that the future of his beloved jazz will be bright. I hadn’t heard the other two musicians before, but they were obviously engaged in living up to the legend — and succeeded!

So what does this have to do with marketing? First of all, the battle-scarred B-3 and its ancient amplifier reminded me of the manual Underwood typewriter that was the instrument of my early creative writing. Even though I’ve turned it in for a computer, as a veteran counterpart in my own profession do I identify with Lonnie Smith? You bet!

He confirms the benefit of keeping one’s mind open to what’s new. Next month, for the second year, I’ll be attending the Inbound Marketing Summit near Boston. This event explores the evolution of marketing in our online world. There I’ll collaborate with and learn from the best young minds in marketing today. I’ll be listening attentively for new tools and ideas that I can combine with my experience and judgment to raise my work for clients to soaring new heights.

The marketing world has never been more exciting and I’ve never had more fun at my work. Part of the reason I’m writing this post is to use the lesson from jazz to inspire businesses to embrace the now and the future. Jump in and take a look at how the evolution of marketing technology can make your business more collaborative, creative and successful.

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3 Responses to “Another Marketing Lesson from the Jazz World”

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Another transferable concept from Jazz to marketing is the idea of a ‘head’ on jazz – this is the motif of the piece and may be returned to several times within a piece. Given that much jazz is the world of the unfamiliar, the use of a musical device called the ‘head’ provides a kind of ‘roadmap’ for people who seek some landmarks on the journey of exploration.

Prince offers us some other lessons on structure and improvisation – see http://www.academy-of-rock.co.uk/downloads/Prince.pdf

All the best

Peter Cook

Author ‘Sex, Leadership and Rock’n’Roll’

http://www.academy-of-rock.co.uk

Thanks for adding to the conversation, Peter. Your terrific work in business innovation – with music as the metaphor — makes you a highly credible voice on the topic. Looking forward to reading your book Sex Leadership and Rock n Roll!

Thank you kindly for the thought – let me know if you have any difficulty getting the book from Amazon.com over the pond


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