Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Review: Nzingha Stewart Guides Lifetime's 'With This Ring' (Premieres Saturday, January 24th) Review: Nzingha Stewart Guides Lifetime's 'With This Ring' (Premieres Saturday, January 24th) Here Are 10 Reasons Why Many of You Aren't Going to Movie Theaters Anymore, According to a New Study Here Are 10 Reasons Why Many of You Aren't Going to Movie Theaters Anymore, According to a New Study 'Empire' Breaks Fox TV’s 22 Year Old Ratings Record 'Empire' Breaks Fox TV’s 22 Year Old Ratings Record Alexandra Shipp Has been Cast as Storm in 'X-Men: Apocalypse' Alexandra Shipp Has been Cast as Storm in 'X-Men: Apocalypse' Open Casting Call - 2 Male Leads in New Feature Film From the Producers of 'Pariah' & 'Yelling to the Sky' Open Casting Call - 2 Male Leads in New Feature Film From the Producers of 'Pariah' & 'Yelling to the Sky' "Stakes Is High" in First Trailer for Season 2 of STARZ Hit Drama Series 'Power' (Returns This Summer) "Stakes Is High" in First Trailer for Season 2 of STARZ Hit Drama Series 'Power' (Returns This Summer) An Open Letter to My Sister, Ava DuVernay An Open Letter to My Sister, Ava DuVernay American 'Luther' Gets Official Pilot Order at Fox, But Contingent on Cast. Let's Help Them Out... American 'Luther' Gets Official Pilot Order at Fox, But Contingent on Cast. Let's Help Them Out... Anthony Mackie Says 'Selma' Oscar Snub Is Because Voters Are "Tired of Race" Anthony Mackie Says 'Selma' Oscar Snub Is Because Voters Are "Tired of Race" Sundance Trailer Exclusive: Stanley Nelson's Timely 'The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution' Sundance Trailer Exclusive: Stanley Nelson's Timely 'The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution' Geeks Gone Wild in First Trailer for Rick Famuyiwa's Sundance-Bound Drama 'Dope' Geeks Gone Wild in First Trailer for Rick Famuyiwa's Sundance-Bound Drama 'Dope' These Movies Are Coming to Netflix's Streaming Library in February These Movies Are Coming to Netflix's Streaming Library in February Bill Duke's 'Dark Girls' Follow-up, 'Light Girls,' Premieres Tonight on OWN. Watch 3 Clips Bill Duke's 'Dark Girls' Follow-up, 'Light Girls,' Premieres Tonight on OWN. Watch 3 Clips Amazon Announces Plans to Disrupt Feature Film Production & Distribution Environment Amazon Announces Plans to Disrupt Feature Film Production & Distribution Environment Watch Teaser for 'Being Mary Jane' Season 2 + Details on Story, Guest Stars Watch Teaser for 'Being Mary Jane' Season 2 + Details on Story, Guest Stars Macy Gray, Bryshere Y. Gray (aka Yazz The Greatest) Will Have An Affair In Lee Daniels' 'Empire' Macy Gray, Bryshere Y. Gray (aka Yazz The Greatest) Will Have An Affair In Lee Daniels' 'Empire' It's A 'Hustle & Flow' Reunion! Taraji P. Henson Joins Terrence Howard In Lee Daniels' 'Empire' It's A 'Hustle & Flow' Reunion! Taraji P. Henson Joins Terrence Howard In Lee Daniels' 'Empire' Lifetime Launches New Series Set In Elite World Of Hip-Hop Majorette Competitions (Watch Preview) Lifetime Launches New Series Set In Elite World Of Hip-Hop Majorette Competitions (Watch Preview) Netflix Explains Why It Doesn't Always Have That Film Or TV Show You Really Want To See (Video) Netflix Explains Why It Doesn't Always Have That Film Or TV Show You Really Want To See (Video) Tichina Arnold Says She Talked To Martin Lawrence About Doing A 'Martin' Movie... Tichina Arnold Says She Talked To Martin Lawrence About Doing A 'Martin' Movie...

Ed Bland - R.I.P. Jazz Composer and Pioneering Black Independent Filmmaker

Shadow and Act By Sergio | Shadow and Act March 17, 2013 at 12:11PM

It is with regret that we have to report the passing, last week, of jazz composer and pioneering filmmaker Ed Bland at his home in Smithfield, Virginia at the age of 86.
6
Ed Bland

It is with regret that we have to report the passing, last week, of jazz composer and pioneering filmmaker Ed Bland at his home in Smithfield, Virginia at the age of 86.

A Chicago natïve Bland was a jazz protégé and started first composing music using Arnold Schoenberg's atonal 12 tone system and worked his entire life as a composer, producer, concert impresario  musical director and arranger for every major jazz artist and funk, soul and blues musician of the 20th century. Bland, as well, recorded and worked for every major record label and television network and served on the National Endowment of the Arts Recoding Panel.

His music was even sampled by Beyoncé and Cypress Hill and even used in video games.

His countless compositions ranged from jazz to modern classical music works that were performed by major symphony orchestras to funk, and he was considered by many musicians to be  “the great-grandfather of hip-hop because of the confrontational quality of his musical film work.”

But also what made Bland so unique and important was his seminal 1959 experimental documentary film made in Chicago,  The Cry of Jazz, which he wrote, produced and directed, and which is not only considered a true classic film of historical importance, but is credited as being "the first true hip-hop film."

 As documentary filmmaker and former curator of films at the Museum of Modern Art, Willard Van Dyke, once said about Cry of Jazz, that it was “the most prophetic film ever made “

With music by jazz innovator Sun Ra, the film, in just 35 minutes, through different approaches from dramatic recreations to musical performance to direct intellectual arguments, makes the case that the African American experience shares a symbiotic and cultural bond with the history of jazz.  

And in 2010 the film was selected for preservation by the U.S  Film Registry of the Library of Congress for being a film that is "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant" and is now  regarded as one of the most influential example of African American independent filmmaking.

And just recently Northwestern University professor Jacqueline Stewart screened the film at the Black Cinema House in Chicago as an example of a historically significant representation of black independent filmmaking.

Here’s a clip from the film:


Shadow & ActNewsletter