muzikaal erfgoed behouden met o.a. vernon chatlein

Report inJazz panel: preserving musical heritage

From June 21 to June 23, inJazz took place. A conference and festival to promote Dutch jazz on both a national and international level. Professionals from the jazz scene gathered for performances and panels in Rotterdam. In the panel Going Back To My Roots… But How? organized by World Music Forum NL, Francesco Martinelli, Jan Brouwer, Vernon Chatlein and Stan Rijven discussed how to preserve musical heritage.

The Panel

  • Francesco Martinelli, is known for his groundbreaking publication ‘History of European Jazz’. He is also a jazz promoter in Italy, a concert organizer, a journalist, and a thought-provoking speaker.
  • Jan Brouwer is a librarian at the Dutch Jazz Archive (NJA) and a gipsyjazzguitarist.
  • Vernon Chatlein is an anthropologist, musician, and theatremaker.
  • Stan Rijven, the host of this panel, works as a pop music journalist and program maker.

Back to my roots

Thanks to these panel members, the topic was discussed from 3 perspectives: a historical, musical, and archival viewpoint. They shared their recent work and opinions. But how do you go back to your roots? And perhaps even more important, how do you preserve musical heritage?

“Preserving sound is a form of protest. Always be critical and search for your own roots. Dig into history and ask yourself who wrote something and why. It’s a misconception that everything is just one click away. Things disappear. Whoever controls memory, controls the future!”

Francesco Martinelli

Chatlein shared that during a concert, he used old tapes in a sample. A Dutch woman who grew up in Curaçao approached him to express her gratitude for presenting those sounds; it allowed her to experience it differently. It changed her perspective as an outsider. Chatlein recommends utilizing and spreading your own culture and heritage forward.

Vernon Chatlein

“Making music is by people for the community. The most important aspect of archiving is to keep the community in mind and make them aware of its value, so don’t discard things. Preserve your heritage.”

Jan Brouwer

It wasn’t just talking about music. Music was also performed. Chatlein gave a demonstration of the benta, originally from Cameroon/Congo. The music is called Muzik di Zumbi, but it’s actually Conjunto Alegre, which means party music. This beautiful end of the panel took the audience on a journey through 400 years of traditions from Africa and the Caribbean.

Relisten or read

Listen to the conversation between the panel members about going back to your roots on Soundcloud. Or read the complete report on the World Music Forum (in Dutch only).


InJazz is an annual event with a business component and a free-access festival. Keep an eye on the inJazz website for updates on the 2024 edition.

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