Art Works Blog

#TuesdayThoughts from the 2018 NEA Jazz Masters

Last night at the Kennedy Center we celebrated the 2018 NEA Jazz Masters--Todd Barkan, Joanne Brackeen, Pat Metheny, and Dianne Reeves--with a stellar line-up of talent including both established and emerging jazz musicians. From Cecile McLorin Salvant and Helen Sung to Christian McBridge and NEA Jazz Master Eddie Palmieri, a who's who of jazz musicians showed up to pay tribute to the multitude of ways the newest Jazz Masters have advanced the field of jazz with their advocacy, mentorship, and sheer talent. Here are just a few of the inspiring words delivered by the 2018 Jazz Masters last night. (Watch the video of the 2018 NEA Jazz Masters Concert here.)

photo of Todd Barkan at NEA Jazz Masters concert with his quote

"No matter what generation we are blessed to be born into, we all stand on the shoulders of our teachers, our parents, our heroes, and all those elders who have lit the path for us."  — Todd Barkan

Diptych of photo of Dianne Reeves from Jazz Masters concert with her quote

“Art is something that affirms the truth in all of us. And it's part of the essence of our humanity. And whether you become an artist or not, the arts help us to build a place to express our thoughts, our opinions, and our desires and our dreams in a way that helps to make impossible possible. The arts create new ways and solutions, not only for ourselves, but for the society at large.” — Dianne Reeves

Diptych of Joanne Brackeen at Jazz Masters concert with her quote

“To be awarded for what you really love, for what you've been doing your whole life, and having the freedom to be yourself, is really an awesome feeling.” — Joanne Brackeen

photo of Pat Metheny at NEA Jazz Masters concert with quote

“Our biggest audience and the folks who will gain the most from what we are all working so hard on, and are so committed to, are quite possibly not even born yet. There's a very particular kind of faith revealed in knowing that And still devoting every waking minute to finding the right resolution, the right groove, the right ways to push and pull and to fight and to listen. What we're all swinging for is something eternal.” — Pat Metheny


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