Everybody has the Blues. Everybody longs for meaning. Everybody needs to love and be loved. Everybody needs to clap hands and be happy. Everybody longs for faith. In music, especially this broad category called Jazz, there is a stepping stone towards all of these.
The Jazz For Everyone Foundation exists to seek out and build a new generation of jazz fans by putting on concerts and events in public spaces and non-traditional concert venues. In addition, we exist to challenge the common belief that jazz is "high art," and not for the common listener, and it is our belief that jazz is music anybody can love. Jazz is truly music For Everyone!
And yet, to most people today, jazz is considered irrelevant at best or exclusively condescending at worst. To them, what once was the joyful, raucous celebration of vibrant youth is now the quaint, outdated fancy of our grandparents. What was once a force for political and societal change is now something relegated to museums and dusty textbooks. And sadly, this music, which once expressed the soul of the oppressed and common man, now carries with it the strong scent of upper class elitism.
Jazz For Everyone exists to change these conditions. Foundation leader PJ Rasmussen believes believes jazz is as relevant today as it was nearly a century ago, and it is music that should make the heart race, the blood pump, and the feet move. AXS magazine commented, “Thank God for PJ Rasmussen...[he’s] the right artist for the job of connecting what’s been long considered an impassable, highbrow art form with the masses."
Jazz For Everyone believes the first step in connecting with (and building) the audience is simple: live performance. Jazz is always at its best in a live environment, where the spontaneity, creativity, and excitement of the moment can truly shine. In an era where pop superstars are caught lip syncing to pre-recorded tracks, jazz stands as a shining beacon of light.
Our focus on public and non-traditional concert venues is driven by the desire to target music lovers who might never think of visiting a jazz club. We seek to integrate jazz into the lives these people are already living and enjoying. This lets them build positive connections with the music and underscores its universal relevance. So, Jazz For Everyone seeks to hold events in places like New York City parks, a beach boardwalk, or anywhere else people gather to have a good time!
Building a new generation of jazz fans, one show at a time—at Jazz For Everyone, our name is our mission.