This paper addresses the relationship between jazz jam sessions in Manhattan, and the concepts of Scene, Ritual and Race. These issues emerged during research that, from an ethnomusicological perspective, focused on the role of jam sessions in Manhattan as a privileged context for the following:

i) learning performative styles of jazz,

ii) developing the creative process,

iii) constructing professional networks,

iv) establishing of the status of musicians.

Studying and analysing the jam sessions at five jazz performance venues in New York, I demonstrate the vital importance of participating in jam sessions by examining their relationship with this performative occasion (Pinheiro 2008).



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