Jazz: Listening for Life – Discovering the joy of listening.™


Our mission is to improve listening skills, and inspire the belief that music not only enhances one’s life, but is essential. With money raised with our ongoing efforts, we finance classes in schools across the country, conducting workshops about jazz, listening, and how to better appreciate live music performance.

Our musicians are full-time, award-winning concert artists, who bring a wide perspective, as well as a variety of stylistic influences to the project. Each has extensive experience in music performance and education.

We’ve asked young people of all ages to be involved in this fundraising effort too, spreading the word through social media, because they want high-level professional musicians to come to their schools and this project makes that possible. Please donate anything you can!

Read more about Jazz:Listening for Life:
Judy Carmichael: Listening for Life
Pianist and radio host launches program to bring jazz musicians to schools across the country.
Jazz Times, by Lee Mergner, January 2011
Click here to read article.


Better listening skills enable a richer experience of life.

How can jazz make us better listeners?

Studies confirm what we all suspect: attention spans are shrinking, and while most have cell phones to their ears or headphones on, no one’s listening.

BETTER LISTENING: Musicians learn to discriminate between different pitch and tone quality, and improvising jazz musicians, in particular, must be intensely engaged to anticipate what comes next, when having a musical conversation with another.

BETTER FOCUS: Musicians have 40% less hearing loss as they age, because of their acquired listening skills. “If you spend a lot of your life interacting with sound in an active manner, then your nervous system has made lots of sound-to-meaning connections that can strengthen your auditory system.” Nina Kraus, Director of the Auditory Neuroscience Laboratory at Northwestern University.

BETTER COMPREHENSION: Jazz is a complex musical form that engages the listeners and, like all great art, is enjoyed even more deeply with greater understanding. Understanding complexity increases intelligence.

The Jazz: Listening for Life mission is to teach jazz appreciation and listening skills from the greatest listeners in the world: jazz musicians.



Jazz: Listening for Life was created with a generous grant from Henry and Gilda Block and the Ken Kolker Foundation to Jazz Inspired, Inc. which supports educational programs and the oral histories made though Judy Carmichael’s Jazz Inspired.

Thank you to the following additional donors:

Apple Bank for Savings, Harry Allen, Jeff Beck, Arline Blake, Henry and Gilda Block, David Bray, Joan Brill, Steven Brown, Milo Carver, James Chirillo, Alix Cohen, Dorothy Cohen, Adolph Cramer, Sandra Crystal, Jim Czak/Nola Studios, Blythe Danner,  Ellen Dioguardi, Robert Doe, Patricia Doyle, Yasmine Djerradine, Jim Durning, James Dybas, Misty Evers, Robert Esdale, Lillian Faffer, Peggy Feder, Joseph & Angela Figliolo, Lachlan Ferguson, Chris Flory, Dan Fortune, Robert Frye, Irene Fulrath, Haja Garone, George Gee, Lois Gibbons, Vince Giordano, Stan Glinka, Mikal Gohring, Deborah Guiffre, Steve Hamilton, James Harding, Teri Hartman, Mike Hashim, Jan Healey-Grien, John &Constance Herrell, Luule Hewson, Jeffrey Hicken, Malcolm Hughes  and Lydia Barnes-Hughes, Eugene Hwan, Marilyn Hwan, Ruth Isaac, Harry Javer, Virginia Johnson, Elizabeth Jones, Barbara Kanter, Catherine Jossett, Stan & Shirley Kaufman, Rochelle Kirschner, John Kramer, Romany Kramoris, Karen Krams, Marion Kraskow, David Lee, Brad Lentz, JP & Chris Lipa, Jackie Lyle, Steve Marston, Nicole Martinez, Arthur Mattel, Daniel & Irene McKillop, Lynn Menefee, Hermine Meschel, John Mikel, Deborah and Ezra Millstein, Rhoda Minowitz, Tony Monte, Richard Mothes, Jr., Dan Mullane, Lee Musiker, Ed Ornowski, Jane Pahr, Marian Papp, Roberta Piccoli, Pat Preu, Erica Prud’homme, Carmella Rapazzo, Lana Reign, Todd Robbins, Mary Rosenbaum, Garrett Sampson, Mike Schell, Judith Schlesinger,Ted Schmitz, Richard Schwartz, Sonny Shotland, Doug & John Shelley, Richard Sigberman, Cindy Simmons, Shannon Simmons, Marin Spinelli, Margaret Slayton, Steinway and Sons, Eva Swan, Shirley Tennyson, Bill Tew, The Ken Kolker Foundation, Iris Topel, May Trent, Irka Tkaczuk, Tony Walton, Carl Watanabe, Marge Wardrop, Ken Watson, R.C. Watts, Judith Waldock