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Jaffe, Dan (January 24, 1933-February 3, 2020)



  • Existence: January 24, 1933 - February 3, 2020


Over the years Dan Jaffe became known as a jazz-poet, although he wrote about many other things. More than a dozen of Jaffe's poems have been set to music for concert chorale. His album with Mike Melvoin, Playing the Word, has been heard on radio throughout the country. Jaffe wrote books about the environment, the American landscape, and Midwestern history.

Jaffe was a fellow of the Breadloaf Writers Conference and the winner of a major Hopwood Prize at the University of Michigan. He was the first annual winner of the Kansas City Writers Place award. In addition to other awards and publications, his poems have been widely anthologized in the U.S., Canada, Australia and New Zealand. He was the subject of a documentary entitled Dan Jaffe, Jazz-Poet.

Jaffe often performed with outstanding jazz musicians, including Bobby Watson, Ira Sullivan, Brian Murphy, George Salisbury, Frank Smith, David Basse, Nicole Yarling and Mike Melvoin. In 2007 he was honored as an Elder Statesman of Kansas City Jazz.

Jaffe was a Professor Emeritus of the University of Missouri-Kansas City. He founded BkMk Press with Roy Fox, head librarian of the Johnson County Resource Library. Fox and Jaffe's approach at the time was to celebrate arts through the library. Later BkMk Press was housed at UMKC with Jaffe as longtime editor.

Dan Jaffe passed away February 12, 2020, at age 87.

Found in 1 Collection or Record:

Dan Jaffe Collection

Identifier: MS-0188
Scope and Contents The Dan Jaffe Collection was gifted to the LaBudde Special Collections in March, 2011.Materials date from the 1940’s to 2011, with the bulk of the material ranging 1960 to 1990.Within lies a culmination of literary capital from the inspirational career and a life of creativity by a publisher, scholar, mentor and wordsmith guru. Included are correspondence,published and unpublished manuscripts, plays, operas, graphics, photographs and miscellaneouspublications. In addition to the Jaffe...
Dates: 1914 - 2012