Jazz And Language

It’s Jazz Part 2

Jazz And Language

Jazz has left its blueprint all over America and the world, enriching fashion, attitudes and aesthetics. Just consider jazz’s effect on the English language.

Jazz musicians have created a complete vocabulary that was originally a private communication that befuddled unenlightened persons.

But it was so colorful a style of speech that it naturally was picked up when people began to understand and appreciate the language.

Here are some examples of common words and phrases that are attributed by scholars to the jazz world and jazz musicians:

Ball – a good time.

Beat – exhausted.

Blow your top- go crazy, or get mad

Funky – smelly, or an earthy, infectious beat.

If push comes to shove – if things come to a head, or to a show down.

Jive – to kid someone, to talk insincerely.

Kick- good feeling, anything that gives you pleasure.

Man – The person addressed is hip and the speaker sincere.

Gas – Anything exceptional.

Hip – An informed, knowledgeable person.

Dig – To be in rapport with someone.

Gig – A persons job.

Cooked – To agree, to be excited, stimulated, or filled with enthusiasm.

Cool – Being in complete control of ones emotions ; a positive reaction to a thing or situation.

Fine – Pleasing, wonderful, exciting feeling.

Dude – A ladies man ( positive) an outsider ( negative )

Jerk – A foolish, unknowingly dull person.

There’s plenty more lively jazz lingo, these examples are the most commonly used.