Last night my parents and I were having a dinner discussion that has become common at my house. That is, a conversation during which I try to explain Jazz to them and they continue to not understand it. For instance we were listening to "Blues and the Abstract Truth" by Oliver Nelson, an album that is catchy, melodic, and all around accessible. Then ITunes went on to "The shape of Jazz to Come" by Ornette Coleman, an album which is squawkish, atonal, and all around much less accessible (but still not truly "avant garde"). As I went to change the music to something more enjoyable my father made the remark: "That would fall more under the category of "unorganized jazz"".
I said: "Oh, it's organized".
Quoth my father (slightly sarcasticaly) "You mean to say that there are things in jazz that are more complex and sophisticated than I might think?"
"Well, yes" I had to say
Then my mother said "But if we don't understand it then how can we believe you?"
Thus, my question:
Can you really believe, and thus know, something if you don't understand it?
For instance: If your best friend came up to you and said "Pablo ate an entire swinger" And you had no idea who Pablo was or what a swinger was, could you really believe or know that "Pablo ate an enitre swinger".