This week's issue of The New Yorker features a profile of jazz nerd Phil Schaap of Columbia University's WKCR radio and his ornithological-leaning show Bird-watchers, a program that, in writer David Remick's words "places a degree of attention on the music of the bebop saxophonist Charlie Parker that is so obsessive, so ardent and detailed, that Schaap frequently sounds like a mad Talmudic scholar who has decided that the laws of humankind reside not in the ancient Babylonian tractates but in alternate takes of 'Moose the Mooche' and 'Swedish Schnapps.'"
Remick asks Schaap to compile his top 100 Essential Jazz Albums (assumed, Of All Time), "more as a guide for the uninitiated than as a source of quarrelling for the collector" and Schaap responds with an eminently quotable commentary on the sad state of Music Lists as a whole. (Bravo.) For a little perspective of Mr. Schapp, we found this interesting Bulletin Board debate on All About Jazz entitled "Phil Schapp drives me crazy!".
AAJ also has a timely feature this week on the recent fiduciary woes of the International Association for Jazz Education (IAJE). -- although one doesn't usually read an investigative piece that beigns with the line: "The truth is, we don't really know."