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Journal of the Music & Entertainment Industry Educators Association

Volume 14, Number 1 (2014)

Beyond Jamming: A Historical and Analytical Perspective on the Creative Process

Monika Herzig
Indiana University

David Baker
Indiana University


The process of the jazz jam session was analyzed from a historical and social perspective based on literature reviews, oral histories, interviews, and survey results. The analysis produced seven factors that facilitate the successful outcome of a jazz jam session. The factors include individual competence and knowledge of the field, practicing improvisation as the ability to overcome self-consciousness, establishing a mentoring system and role models, democracy and collaboration, leaders and sidemen, community support, and a continuous evaluation system. Each factor was defined and exemplified towards a model for group creativity with suggestions for further research and applications.

Keywords: creativity, jazz, jam session, group creativity, improvisation, music education

Herzig, Monika and David Baker. “Beyond Jamming: A Historical and Analytical Perspective on the Creative Process.” Journal of the Music and Entertainment Industry Educators Association 14, no. 1 (2014): 183-217. https://doi.org/10.25101/14.7

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