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He sees a change take place in them when they are touched by the music.The narrator senses that they know who they are, where they come from, and what they have gone through in heir life. He feels that they do not believe in what the song say because “they do not believe in the holiness of the three sisters and the brother [they were] divided by very little” (Baldwin 51).
For while the tale of how we suffer, and how we are delighted and how we may triumph is never new, it always must be heard” (Baldwin 57).
The narrator begins to understand the healing power of Jazz thinking that the Ochs had shifted to Sonny and Sonny’s relationship with it when he says “Listen, Creole seemed to be saying, listen. The narrator’s understanding deepens when he say “l seemed to hear with what burning he had made it his, with what burning we had yet to make it ours …
The narrator questions Sonny about this point when he responds “But there’s no way not to suffer-is there, Sonny? The street revival and the conversation with Sonny make the narrator to want to understand the significance of the music.
When Sonny asks him to go to the club to listen to him play jazz, he accepts marking the beginning of his enlightenment.
This contrast is demonstrated during the taxi ride the brothers take alongside Central Park.
In Harlem, the housing projects abound and “the playgrounds are popular with children who don’t play at Jacks, or skip rope, or roller skate, or wing, and they can be found In It after ark” (Baldwin 42).The narrators opinion is that jazz musicians fall into the name category of the people his father used to call “good time people” (Baldwin 46), people who hangs “around night clubs, clowning around on bandstands, while people pushed each other around a dance floor” (Baldwin 46).The narrator begins to analyze what went wrong with sonny after his arrest.Before their mother’s death she talks to him about their fathers brother who was a musician and about his death.She also asks him to look out for Sonny but him even though he promises to do it, he forgets his promise.Jazz Healing Power According to Sonny’s Older Brother in “Sonny’s Blues” James Baldwin sets “Sonny’s Blues” in Harlem around the 1 ass’s.He paints a picture of a place where poverty Is rampant In contrast with other places close by where people were rich and lived in fancy homes.This difference caused even more strain In an already almost not existent relationship.The narrator refuses to listen to his brother play jazz and Sonny in turn finds a more understanding crowd in his drug using friends which ultimately leads to his arrest.The narrator finds that his brother has been arrested for heroin peddling while reading about it on the newspaper on his way to school where he taught.The news affected him because Sonny was a jazz musician.