We wanted to thank you for your fine coverage of this year's Chicago Jazz Fest [Section Three, September 3]. It seems for the past several years that Peter Margasak has had the role of informing your audience background information about the various artists that play the stages. "Master" Peter's comments on 13-year-old Susan May reached a new low for any human that considers him or herself a journalist.
He starts by informing us, in a Peter way, of her work in local theater and musical theater. Is this bad for someone to do at an early age? Does he want her to join the three musketeers and become another Britney Spears? He has questions about her sense of swing. How many 13-year-olds even know what swing is, or think that it might be in the playground? Perhaps all of the one-chord, out-of-tune hip-hop that he has to listen to most of the time has rotted his brain. I know he can't stand Southport or Northport Records, but to take his vengeance and ignorance out on an innocent child is very low, beyond Jerry Springer or Geraldo Rivera. This is a man that told me flat out, "I don't like any of the records on your label," and that is a quote. There are 109 projects on our label, from artists aged 13 to 90. Why does he like all of the CDs on Okka Disc? Does he play bass with John Corbett?
Good to see him off Section Three, and one day writing for the National Enquirer...or better yet trying to swing in his dirty gym shoes and lack of taste.
By the way, if John Corbett can comment on festival acts, can I comment next year also?
President, Southport/Northport Records
Peter Margasak replies:
While it's true that I think the overwhelming majority of music on Southport is god-awful, I have enjoyed recordings by Von Freeman, Damon Short, King Fleming, and Fred Anderson. I don't play bass with John Corbett, but we have carpooled on several occasions.