Poised to become a classic of jazz literature, Visions of Jazz: The First Century offers seventy-nine chapters illuminating the lives of virtually all the major figures in jazz history. From Louis Armstrong's renegade-style trumpet playing to Sarah Vaughan's operatic crooning, and from the swinging elegance of Duke Ellington to the pioneering experiments of Ornette Coleman, jazz critic Gary Giddins continually astonishes the reader with his unparalleled insight. Writing with the grace and wit that have endeared his prose to Village Voice readers for decades, Giddins also widens the scope of jazz to include such crucial American musicians as Irving Berlin, Rosemary Clooney, and Frank Sinatra, all primarily pop performers who are often dismissed by fans and critics as mere derivatives of the true jazz idiom. And he devotes an entire quarter of this landmark volume to young, still-active jazz artists, boldly expanding the horizons of jazz--and charting and exploring the music's influences as no other book has done.
Written by one of jazz journalism's best and most knowledgeable critics, this book explores the full swing spectrum from its origins in the 1920s through its current retro resurgence. Features intriguing capsule biographies of 400 of the best musicians, from classic artists like Duke Ellington and Benny Goodman to retro swingers such as the Brian Setzer Orchestra and Lavay Smith and the Red Hot Skillet Lickers, with each artist's most notable CDs reviewed and rated, plus info on film appearances, books, and hard-to-find recordings. Includes insightful essays that explore this music's cultural impact, fun photos and swing memorabilia.
In the 1950s Lee Friedlander arrived in New York and began work as a house photographer for Atlantic Records. Over the next two decades, he would create some of their most famous album covers, and his picture style--including portraits of Ray Charles, Aretha Franklin, Ruth Brown, Charles Mingus, John Coltrane, the Modern Jazz Quartet, and countless others--became forever associated with that golden era of American music. This book is Friedlander's tribute to the great musicians of the post-war years. It includes work from his trips through the Deep South, where he met Delta Blues musicians like Mississippi Fred McDowell, New Orleans marching bands and Nashville performers such as Johnny Cash, the Carter Sisters and Flatt & Scruggs. There are photographs of unknown bluegrass guitarists in Appalachia, photographs from tours with Count Basie's Orchestra, and images of Jazz geniuses like Thelonius Monk, Duke Ellington, Ornette Coleman and Yusef Lateef. Interviews by Friedlander with R&B legend Ruth Brown and modern jazz pioneer Steve Lacy are included along with an introduction by music impresario Joel Dorn.
A collection of studies composed for musicians who wish to extend themselves in improvisation, composition, sight reading and general musicianship skills. Each etude has a theoretical explanation, suggestions for performance and tips for practice routines
Once a thriving body of innovative and fluid music, jazz is now the victim of destructive professional and artistic forces, says Eric Nisenson. Corruption by marketers, appropriation by the mainstream, superficial media portrayal, and sheer lack of skill have all contributed to the demise of this venerable art form. Nisenson persuasively describes how the entire jazz "industry" is controlled by a select cadre with a choke hold on the most vital components of the music. As the listening culture has changed, have spontaneity and improvisation been sacrificed? You can agree or disagree with Nisenson's thesis and arguments, but as Booklist says, "his passion is engrossing."
The definitive book on bop drumming---a style that is both the turning point and the cornerstone of contemporary music's development. This comprehensive book and audio presentation covers time playing, comping, soloing, brushes, more jazz essentials, and charts in an entertaining mix of text, music, and pertinent quotes.
Muddy Waters invented electric blues and created the template for the rock and roll band and its wild lifestyle. Gordon excavates Muddy's mysterious past and early career, taking us from Mississippi fields to postwar Chicago street corners.