Monday, August 20, 2012

Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band; this is a BMC Live Music Review.

Doug Ruffin
Boston Music Coalition

August 21, 2012

Last May, I attended a great fundraiser. During the event, a silent auction took place. Several choices abound, my law of attraction for live music sent me bidding for an August 18th Bruce Springsteen Concert at Gillette Stadium. Without breaking the bank, I won a pair of Tickets to a music experience.

Saturday night arrives. My girlfriend lookin’ hot as always, Limo service on time and great eats at, “Toby Keith’s I love this Bar and Grill”. Our seats for the concert were not just good; they were what I would call, a privilege!

Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band are the embodiment of what popular live music strives to accomplish. The Wrecking Ball Tour Roared in to Foxborough MA Busting out on stage with high voltage and sustaining that energy throughout the four hour concert. Bruce Springsteen welcomed back repeat concert attendees and introduced him self and the E Street Band to those of us who joined the experience for the first time. He stated on stage that he welcomes new and younger fans because he has another forty years in him to perform. The Boss truly ruled. But he achieves that honor to rule without manipulating the audience. Instead, The Boss employed a relentless driving musical force with the E Street Band, amazing interaction with the audience while rockin’ a non stop spiritual vibe that some of today’s younger R&B or Gospel singers have yet to achieve. It’s no wonder why Bruce Springsteen’s 50,000 strong audiences left the concert up lifted and sanctified!


Wednesday, August 1, 2012

A Message from the President: The Future of Jazz Radio effects the Future of Live Jazz Music.

By Doug Ruffin
Boston Music Coalition

I have been a friend with the folks at JazzBoston for some time now. So when the call was made to attend a gathering outside of the WGBH studios in Boston because of a programming change that canceled weeknight Jazz programming after many years of sustaining ratings and contributions from listeners, I knew I had to attend. In a large radio market like Boston, Radio formats are likely to change. ‘FNX flipped to a “Jack” format, ‘ODS flipped to the Amp (dance / Pop) format. The change at ‘GBH Radio is not a format change but instead, a cultural change. And they did it with “our” money! Weeknight Jazz programming is relegated to limited hours on weekend nights in favor of a News / Talk format. The market already has News / Talk at WBUR, WRKO  WTTK not to mention WBZ All news during the day and talk at night. So ‘GBH cried poverty, changed culture and went out to purchase PRI. No, Not channel 10 in Providence; bigger! (Public Radio International). You’ve got to be kidding!

Music formats have a direct effect on live music in any market. Want to know if Lady GaGa is coming to town? Kiss 108 is here to tell you. Want to know when that rock or alternative band is hitting the stage? ‘AAF is here to tell you. And when you want to know about live Jazz performances, Jazz greats, Local Jazz artists and jazz history? Sorry Bud! You’re out of luck. ‘GBH doesn’t want to play anymore. Remember that local donation you made to ‘GBH to keep local programming going? It was used to purchase PRI.

JazzBoston Stepped up to the plate and invited the public, musicians, radio professionals and educators to an open community meeting Tuesday night at the Boston Public Library where anyone can share positive ideas to help Jazz music survive on traditional radio as well as alternative media. Without Jazz media, fans cannot get current information on Jazz artists, local jazz performers or where Live Jazz music is being performed in greater Boston. Jazz is rich in history and culture and announcers like Eric Jackson bring that history to life so that any 15 year old can appreciate something a little bit more than Lady Gaga.

The well attended community meeting was moderated by JazzBoston Board Members’ Jose Masso and Emmett Price.  Everyone who wanted to speak got the chance to do so. Attendees came prepared with short statements and questions that stayed on topic without a single drifting speech or long over the top commentary. WICN in Worcester was in attendance. That opened the idea to get “repeaters or “Feed” to a Boston area station so Jazz can be heard on the radio again from Worcester to Boston. Many New media ideas were expressed and with a proactive follow up commitment from JazzBoston and the attendees to participate in committees, Jazz could be back on the air. Live Jazz Music will sustain and grow throughout greater Boston. But the follow up has to be just as energetic as the community meeting was on Tuesday. If not, a vital part of music culture will die.


Take Action! Get Involved! Find out How You Can Help! Send Questions and Suggestions Regarding the Future of Jazz Radio in Boston to:


WICN Radio Worcester:

WGBH Radio Boston:

Scullers Jazz Club:


MAJE (Massachusetts Association for Jazz Educators)