Jazz funerals in the time of do-not-gather

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2020/04/01/jazz-funerals-in-the-time-of-d.html



This is surely one of the biggest cruelties, that right now we can’t even mourn those who died (whether from Covid-19 or not). We’re going to have a bunch of funerals after this is all over.


Or even comfort the dying in person. I can’t imagine the pain of having a sick spouse taken into hospital care never be seen again, being denied the closure of a funeral, and then spending the following months at home alone without so much as a visit from a friend or family member to help get through the grieving process.


I agree. This is going to have long term consequences in so many ways.


I’ve been thinking about how the Vietnam War traumatized so many American service members (to say nothing of the trauma suffered by others) that it led to a fundamental change in our social and medical understanding of PTSD. Or going back earlier, how the generation who lived through the Great Depression developed quirks like food hoarding that their children and grandchildren struggled to identify with. This is going to be one of those kinds of deals.


Undoubtedly. What’s scary is that we’re really still at the beginning of this, too. Who knows how all this is going to play out or how it will effect political structures around the world. I’d hope it would push us towards more robust government responses, better health care, better safety net, etc, but it can just as easily lead to a downward spiral of some kind.


NOLA music is the only music for me. I’ll listen anytime, anywhere.


Not sure what you mean by jazz weddings, but I’ve been to many weddings that do a second line from the service to the reception. Its kind of like the second half of a jazz funeral when the deceased has been laid to rest and the music turns celebratory. It works well if your guests know what is going on. I went to one wedding in city park (same park where the posted video was recorded) where most of the guests were from out of town. There were more random locals that happened to be in the park dancing on the way to the reception than actual wedding guests.


Am I the only Grinch? I love the spirit in that music, and everyone is right about our problems handling grief … but this clip flipped me out.

Anyone who has sung publicly or played a horn will tell you that there is spittle and tiny droplets flying all over the place and these artists are way too close to one another. NEJM has published research showing that the virus will remain stable in aerosolized form for at least three hours. These three sweet men have put one another, and all of their families, in mortal danger.

Boing Boing should not be promoting this.

The way things are going now in Louisiana, as they’re shafted once again in the midst of catastrophe, this is sadly appropriate. Stay healthy, Nawlins!


I can tell you it’s very hard. Hospitals are locked down and I’ve heard that women couldn’t even have the father in during the birth.

This past Sunday, we watched my father die over Skype. We weren’t allowed in, and couldn’t touch him, kiss his brow and tell him he didn’t need to fight anymore, or beg him to squeeze our hand. A nurse had to tell us his breathing had stopped. The body had to be creamated and we’ll get the ashes in a few weeks, they say. Even then, we cannot have a funeral, and while we could certainly gather the family without people knowing, many are elderly or otherwise a risk and asking them to go out would be potentially multiplicative.

There’s no end to the pain. Not that there ever is, but I never before realized how important for the mourning process that ‘saying goodbye’ part is. Right now, that grief sits there at the back of my mind like a toad in a well. As I tried to sleep last night so I could work this morning, suddenly images of him came unbidden to mind and I wept with impotent anger and sadness.


I’m very sorry for your loss. It was difficult and infuriating enough losing my own father five years ago and being able to have done all the important things you couldn’t do now, so this must be so much more painful for you and your family. I can only extend my sympathy to you and hope you can find peace in the good memories of your time with him.


I am so, so sorry.

My sister and brother-in-law experienced something similar with their mother (in-law) who had a pneumonia during early COVID19 days in WA and was locked in a ward waiting test results as she died from a stroke. Full hazmat in and out just to see her for a few minutes.

A nightmare we wake up into.


That. I wandered into one last January.


So sorry for your loss and the awful circumstances compounding it. Words are insufficient.


Sorry for your loss. I can’t even begin to come up with any better words.


I’m sorry for your loss.


I’m sorry for your loss as well…there’s more casualties from this virus than just those we lose.

My belief in the afterlife is questionable, depending on the day of the week these days, but if there is one, my father is right now organizing a way to get this fixed. His whole life he spend finding problems and fixing them. If he happens to meet up with my grandfather, most likely entire fully built hospitals will start falling from the sky.


The jazz piano great Ellis Marsalis has lost his battle with Covid-19. He was NOLA’s brightest star, and deserves a jazz funeral if anyone does, but not if it spreads the disease.

I was fortunate enough to see him in concert in the late eighties, with a front-row ticket financed by working three jobs. His music was so relaxing, and I was so exhausted, that I kept falling asleep while listening to him, and was sorely ashamed of my involuntary behavior.

Do get acquainted with his music, if you have not heard him. It will destress you.


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