Meine Passion, Schlagzeug zu spielen, die ich im fortgeschrittenen Alter wieder aufgenommen habe, brachte mich dazu über die Jazz-Musik zu schreiben, die seit jeher ein wesentlicher Teil meines Lebens war. Das Resultat ist der Gedichtband „Swing Men and Women“. Auf meiner Homepage finden Sie ausgewählte Gedichte dieser Sammlung sowie Porträts von Musikern verfasst vom Gitarristen Manfred Markowski. Manfred ist jener Mann, der mich dazu brachte, meine Erfahrungen, Gedanken und Gefühle in Worten auszudrücken.


Swing Men and Women

A series of poems on jazz personalities and jazz situations
Swing Men & Women contains poems about musicians and singers of the Swing Era. I started writing these poems because I wanted to put into words what Lester Young means to me, and the first poem I wrote was, of course, about Lester Young. I always seem to begin and end with the Pres. Accuse me of favoritism and I plead guilty. But as much as I am dedicated to The Prez, there are many others I admire such Billie Holiday, Chu Berry, Lionel Hampton, Arnett Cobb, Harry Carney and Big Sid Catlett and, to name a few.

And it was imperative not to leave out those, who more or less got lost in the shuffle, like Jack McVea and Lil Hardin. I’ve always had a place in my heart for underdogs and dark horses, and I’ve done my best to include them.
Situations that these men and women were confronted with are also dealt with. Situations that these men and women had to overcome, such as Jim Crow are also dealt with. And last but not least, this collection is rounded out by biographical aspects of the author as a jazz devotee and drummer. „I have had a bumpy ride as a writer, but jazz has always provided me with joy and solace.“

Saying Goodbye

Harry Kuhner reads one of his great Jazz Poems about Billie Holiday and Lester Young.
Taped live in Vienna 1999.