Coltrane: The Story of a Sound

Coltrane: The Story of a Sound
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John Coltrane left an indelible mark on the world, but what was the essence of his achievement that makes him so prized forty years after his death? What were the factors that helped Coltrane become who he was? And what would a John Coltrane look like now–or are we looking for the wrong signs?In this deftly written, riveting study, New York Times jazz critic Ben Ratliff answers these questions and examines the life of Coltrane, the acclaimed band leader and deeply spiritual man who changed the face of jazz music. Ratliff places jazz among other art forms and within the….

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From Birdland to Broadway: Scenes from a Jazz Life

From Birdland to Broadway: Scenes from a Jazz Life
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In the 1950s, New York City’s Birdland was the center of the world of modern jazz–and a revelation to Bill Crow, a wet-behind-the-ears twenty-two-year-old from Washington State. Located on Broadway between 52nd and 53rd streets, the club named for the incomparable Charlie “Bird” Parker boasted lifesize photo murals of modern jazzmen like Dizzy Gillespie, Lennie Tristano, and, of course, Bird himself, looming large against jet black walls. Exotic live birds perched in cages behind the bar. The midget master of ceremonies, 3’9″ Pee Wee Marquette, dressed in a zoot suit and loud tie, smoked huge cigars and screeched mispronounced introductions….

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Africa Speaks, America Answers: Modern Jazz in Revolutionary Times (Nathan I. Huggins Lectures)

Africa Speaks, America Answers: Modern Jazz in Revolutionary Times (The Nathan I. Huggins Lectures)
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In Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, pianist Randy Weston and bassist Ahmed Abdul-Malik celebrated with song the revolutions spreading across Africa. In Ghana and South Africa, drummer Guy Warren and vocalist Sathima Bea Benjamin fused local musical forms with the dizzying innovations of modern jazz. These four were among hundreds of musicians in the 1950s and ’60s who forged connections between jazz and Africa that definitively reshaped both their music and the world. Each artist identified in particular ways with Africa’s struggle for liberation and made music dedicated to, or inspired by, demands for independence and self-determination. That music was the wild,….

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The Jazz Tradition

The Jazz Tradition
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When it was first published in 1970, this lively and fascinating book was greeted with almost universal acclaim. The American Record Guide called it “the best one-volume of jazz we have,” and the Jazz Journal praised it as “a brilliant study of the whole of jazz.” Perhaps the greatest tribute was paid by Louis Armstrong himself who raved: “it held Ol’ Satch spellbound.” Now thoroughly revised and expanded, the new edition of The Jazz Tradition offers readers a unique history of jazz, as seen through its greatest practitioners. An original blend of history and criticism, this book explores the work….

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Gene Krupa: The Pictorial Life of a Jazz Legend

Gene Krupa: The Pictorial Life of a Jazz Legend, Book & CD
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Gene Krupa: The Pictorial Life of a Jazz Legend is a photographic presentation of the life, times and music of “that ace drummer man.” With over 200 photos that span six decades of jazz history, this most visual of performers, the man who made the drums a solo instrument, comes alive like never before. Contributing their own singular and often heartfelt insights about Gene are the finest percussionists in music today, including Phil Collins, Tommy Aldridge, John Blackwell, Peter Erskine, Ed Shaughnessy, Peter Criss, Kenny Aronoff, Alphonse Mouzon, Carl Palmer, Dave Garibaldi, Carmine Appice, Alex Acuña, Neil Peart, and Steve….

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Louisiana Music: A Journey From R&b To Zydeco, Jazz To Country, Blues To Gospel, Cajun Music To Swamp Pop To Carnival Music And Beyond

Louisiana Music: A Journey From R&b To Zydeco, Jazz To Country, Blues To Gospel, Cajun Music To Swamp Pop To Carnival Music And Beyond
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What is it about Louisiana that breeds and attracts musicians? There are literally hundreds of them—Dr. John, Harry Connick, Jr., Randy Newman, Trent Reznor, the Neville family, the Marsalis family—all part of a tradition going back to Louis Armstrong, Fats Domino, Professor Longhair, Jelly Roll Morton, Buddy Bolden, and Mahalia Jackson. Tackling the monumental task of surveying the lush musical landscape of the state, Rick Koster examines all of the ingredients that went into creating this hotbed of talent—the social influences, the musical traditions, the food, the drink, the heat—and introduces us to the stars, both local and national, who….

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The Freedom Principle: Jazz After 1958 (Da Capo Paperback)

The Freedom Principle: Jazz After 1958 (Da Capo Paperback)
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Ornette Coleman’s discovery some thirty years ago that his band’s music was indeed a “free thing” marked the beginning of a revolution in jazz. From the early free-form experiments, Coleman’s dancing blues, and John Coltrane’s saxophone cries and sheets of sound, to the brittle, melancholy modes of Miles Davis, vibrant, sophisticated new jazz idioms proliferated. In this critical and historical survey of today’s jazz, noted critic John Litweiler traces the evolution of the new music through such artists as Coleman, Coltrane, Davis, Cecil Taylor, Eric Dolphy, Sun Ra, Albert Ayler, Anthony Braxton, and others. He also addresses questions such as:….

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Legends of Jazz Drumming

Legends of Jazz Drumming
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Part One (1920-1950) traces the history of jazz drumming in America from its earliest, pre-1920 roots to the advent of the be-bop revolution in the mid-1940s and beyond. It features archival film clips and photographs of the greats of jazz drumming, including Baby Dodds, Paul Barbarin, Chick Webb, Gene Krupa, Buddy Rich, Dave Tough, Sid Catlett, Kenny Clarke, and Max Roach. Part Two (1950-1970) features clips and photos of Philly Joe Jones, Shelly Manne, Art Blakey, Joe Morello, Roy Haynes, Ed Thigpen, Paul Motian, Tony Williams, Steve Gadd, Billy Cobham, and others. This program illuminates a turbulent and very significant….

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Jazz Guide New York City

Jazz Guide New York City
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This is an indispensable guide for both jazz aficionados and those seeking entree into New York’s big band, bebop, fusion, and funk scenes. Profiled venues include fabled haunts of Harlem; elegant Midtown supper clubs; hip downtown hangouts; a subterranean Bowery alcove where the spirit of Mingus rumbles on; an intimate uptown spot that inspired a famous screenplay; and a celebrity-owned club in the heart of Times Square. There are dozens of photos and each listing offers directions, hours, subway stops, and maps, while sidebars describe festivals, famous addresses, and jazz history.

Jazz Messages (with CD) (Manhattan Music Publications)

Art Blakey's Jazz Messages: Book & CD (Manhattan Music Publications)
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Through in-depth analysis, detailed transcriptions and album references, author John Ramsay gives us an insider’s view of Art Blakey’s unique drumming style. The book includes examples of Art’s philosophies and wisdom as told by some of the great alumni of the Jazz Messengers.