A week after would-be music journalist Jeff Heinrich set off a viral storm with his hatchet-job on Maria Schneider, another Canwest writer has tried his hand at music criticism and come up sadly wanting.
In today's Ottawa Citizen, Bruce Ward decides to profile Ornette Coleman from the perspective that the saxophonist/composer hasn't really done anything since 1959.
The first sign that Ward is hopelessly lost on the subject is his assertion that Coleman's work in 1959 was overshadowed by Miles Davis' Kind Of Blue. In fact, Kind Of Blue barely caused a ripple in the jazz world at the time, while Coleman's New York City debut and the first recordings by his quartet dominated the music scene that year, with reviews—pro and con—by observers as diverse as Leonard Bernstein and Clark Terry.
To ignore Coleman's output of the past 50 years, which includes some of the most important artistic statements in any genre of music, and present him as some sort of musical anomaly is way, way below the standards a major daily should be setting.