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Twenty-Five in B&W: An Improviser’s Gallery

Barry Thomson

Published: 2012-05-08

The Toronto-based photographer and jazz aficionado Barry Thomson has been shooting photos documenting the Toronto jazz and improvising scene for years. CSI/ECI is pleased to be able to publish a small selection from his vast archives, including short comments and recollections associated with each photo. At the 2011 Guelph Jazz Festival, Thomson and CSI Co-Editor Daniel Fischlin discussed making at least a small portion of the archive available to the general public. The following gallery hints at the rich stream of superb improvising musicians that have passed through Toronto in the last twenty-seven years or so—the earliest photos in this gallery date back to 1985.

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Listening itself, an improvisative act engaged in by everyone, announces a practice of active engagement with the world, where we sift, interpret, store and forget, in parallel with action and fundamentally articulated with it ("Mobilitas Animi" 113).

– George E. Lewis