Sunday, June 11, 2017

The Summer/Fall Contests for 2017 at The Song Is....

I've enjoyed exploring the music of jazz musicians born in the 1930s with you, but now it's time to move on to the summer/fall contests.

All poems and flash fiction submitted between now and September 30 will be eligible for Thelma's Prize.  Poems and flash fiction from poets based in the Washington, DC area (including Baltimore and Frederick) are eligible for the local prize.  Submitted artwork is eligible for Callie's Prize.  We may even have some entries that are exclusively visual!  However, given the craziness of the semester, I may not be posting as frequently from mid-August on.

We will have three contests this time.

The first contest is for poetry and prose inspired by musicians born in the 1940s.  In fact, Catfish McDaris is starting the contest with a piece that references Dylan.  So you may send me poems about Dylan, the Beatles, Gene Clark, Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, the Temptations, the Supremes, Richard Thompson, Sandy Denny, and any of your favorite 60s or 70s musician born in the 1940s.  (I just realized that Marvin Gaye was born in 1939, but if you want to send me a tribute to him, that is fine.)  You may also send me pieces inspired by jazz musicians like Herbie Hancock, Chick Corea, Larry Young (who was actually born in 1940), Astrud Gilberto, Bennie Maupin, Gary Bartz, Michael Brecker, TS Monk, Phyllis Hyman, and Pharoah Sanders, just to name a few.

If this music is too newfangled for you, you may also send in poetry and prose inspired by jazz musicians who were *active* in the 1940s.  Send me your poems about Thelonious Monk, Mary Lou Williams, Dizzy Gillespie, Anita O'Day, and so on!

Finally, to maintain the environmental theme I began in the last set of contests, I am looking for poems on floods or droughts or water.  Think about how your part of the world is affected by climate change and/or water.

Please send your poems to .  I would like up to five poems or five flash fiction at once.  I encourage you to try the contests.  You need not write about the life of the musician, but you may just listen to his or her music--and write!  However, if you quote from lyrics, be sure to put them in quotes and cite them.

I'm looking forward to seeing what you come up with.

Let's finish with some music.  I'll start with TS Monk's 1992 version of "Round Midnight."  Not sure who the pianist is.

Here is his version of "Crepuscle with Nellie" from the album Monk on Monk:

Michael Brecker's Don't Try This at Home was one of the first jazz CDs I ever bought:

My husband's guilty pleasure is Return to Forever:

Here is a video of Gary Bartz from 2015:

I'll move to pop with some Laura Nyro.

I'll finish with Gene Clark's "In a Misty Morning":

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