Salt Lake City was founded by Mormons – adherents of the strictest religion. They once admitted polygamy and didn’t respect black people. Mormons still wear special underwear to protect them from sin. As you might guess, this city has instantly become the world’s capital of jazz music.
Of course, the team’s name has nothing to do with Salt Lake and the state of Utah. But it was based in the glorious city of New Orleans, which is famous in the jazzmen community. The team was created there in 1974, and its prominent violet-yellow-green colors originated in this place. The great Pete Maravich, known by his nickname Pistol Pete, looked great in this form for all five years that were devoted to the New Orleans Jazz team.
In 1979, Jazzmen shocked their fans by their decision to move to Salt Lake City. At that time, there was a much smaller market than in New Orleans. Much to the resentment of Louisiana, the owner of the club left the name Jazz, despite its utter irrelevance in the church-hymn country of Mormons. So Jazz was stolen by white people from blacks, as they also stole Jazz from them in their time.
In Utah, the emblem and colors weren’t changed, although the uniform for outside matches was made green. In 1984, with the arrival of John Stockton, the best midfielder in the history of the NBA, purple got the primary color’s status. Also, designers added the inscription “Utah” to the T-shirt.
In the 90s, Utah lost its mind in clothes models of that time and paired the color purple with greenish-blue, bronze, and black. The Utah Jazz emblem got one more item depicted – the mountains.
In 2004, Jazz changed the colors to blue and white. Probably these colors were preferred by Andrei Kirilenko, born in St. Petersburg. The form, both basic and alternative, became much simpler. However, this experiment did not last long. Utah returned to basics – yellow and green were chosen again (but with dark blue instead of purple), and the original emblem was returned to the chest, too. Speaking about the main logo, it remained the same, having only got the second repaint in for its existence.
Meaning and History
The logo of the basketball club is based on its nickname. The name Jazz appeared back in those days when the franchise belonged to the city of New Orleans, the jazz capital of the world. The logo was appropriate: the eighth note in the form of a capital letter “J.” With the move to Utah, nothing has changed: the team remained with its old name and retained the key elements of the logo.
1975 – 1979
1975 was the first year of Utah JAZZ’s existence. The famous basketball team was born in the center of the jazz industry – in New Orleans. The logo’s main symbol was the first letter of the word “Jazz” – “J.” It resembles the eighth musical note and also forms a ball at the base. The word “Jazz” is completely made in a dark purple color. Above it, there was a low-key black inscription, “New Orleans.”
1980 – 1996
In the late 1970s, the team moved to Utah. She did not have time to get permission to rebrand, so she had to enter the 1979-1980 season under the old name. The only thing that she changed in the logo is the name of the city.
1997 – 2004
Despite the lack of jazz heritage in Salt Lake City, the club continued to develop the concept. Artists reworked the logo, making the letter “J” not like an eighth note, but a saxophone. In the background, they placed a ball with mountain peaks and surrounded it with a brown ring with the inscription “UTAH”.
2005 – 2010
In 2005, designers changed the color scheme. The ball and mountains turned purple, the ring became dark blue, and the word “JAZZ” became blue with a thin white border.
2010 – 2015
Another change in the palette led to the fact that the colors of Mardi Gras returned to their original place. This can be understood by the green ball and the golden stroke around the nickname of the club.
2015 – Present
In 2015, team owners pleased fans by returning the old logo, which reminds of the first years of Utah JAZZ team existence in Louisiana.
The latest redesign is a tribute to a long-gone classic. The developers restored the logo, adopted back in 1980, and used until 1996 inclusive. In the process, they made the inscriptions dark blue, and the decorative lines were repainted in dark green.
The word “Jazz” in the logo and the team’s name conveys the idea of ”collective improvisation.” This definition was given in the dictionary, which guided those who chose the nickname New Orleans Jazz. Therefore, the emblem developers decided not to leave the musical theme and connect it with sports, combining in one drawing a baseball and the letter “J” first in the form of a note, and then in the form of a saxophone.
Font and Colors
The club emblems used two unique fonts. The first (he is the last) is an author’s typeface with a note instead of “J” and with asymmetric letters with an additional straight line on the right side. The second option (it was relevant from 1997 to 2015) looks completely different. This is a stylized font with serifs on the edges and triangular protrusions in the center. In this form, the letter “J” clearly resembles a wind musical instrument.
The classic Utah Jazz palette matches the traditional colors of Mardi Gras. It combines green, golden, and dark blue, which in the original version was purple.