Jazz like boxing is all about heart & soul, talent and improvisation. George Foreman said that boxing was much like jazz because “The better it is, the less people appreciate it.’” Tonight at the Decatur Boxing Club the two worlds of jazz and boxing went toe to toe in the ring. The good news is that the winner of this match was the audience filled with connoisseurs of jazz and boxing.
Tonight’s Jazz In The Ring event was the first of it’s kind at Xavier Biggs’ Decatur Boxing Club. Tonight’s event was hosted by A Lady Named Pearl with music provided by Dana Rice, James Taylor III and the Papuna Jazz Band. It was a warm summer night in the gym but the libations provided by Three Taverns Craft Brewery helped many in the audience cool down.
The world renown jazz artist Miles Davis was a lover of boxing. So much so he mimicked their pre-fight rituals with his pre-show preparations.
Before performances, Miles stayed away from others and often drove away anyone who might approach him. Like a boxer, preparing for a fight, he denied himself food and sex before playing, believing that a musician should perform hungry and unsatisfied…Like a fighter, he tied his shoelaces as tightly as he could bear, on shoes that were already a size smaller than his size 7 feet, so he could feel firmly in place — “So What: The Life of Miles Davis” by John Szwed, Simon & Schuster, 2002.
James Taylor III, spoke about Miles Davis’ love for boxing and performed a set inspired by Miles Davis. This set included a rendition of “My Funny Valentine”
Atlanta doesn’t have many venues or events that focus on jazz. I’m pleased to see that we have another choice thanks to Xavier Biggs. Jazz In The Ring at the Decatur Boxing Club is a monthly event that will happen every first Saturday. Stay tuned to Libro Musica for news on upcoming shows. Follow the #JazzInTheRing hashtag on Social Media.