All That Jazz

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All the greats from the iconic jazz period in one collection.
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Bookmateadded a book to the bookshelfAll That Jazz3 years ago
"Soul Music" isn't about jazz specifically, but since Jazz originated from the African-American communities, we thought this book would also lend an insight into music and race.

Candace Allen was the first African-American female member of the Directors Guild of America. And the conversation of race and music are an integral part of her life, from Miles Davis's close friendship with her father to her marriage to Simon Rattle, and her political activism at Harvard University, Hollywood, and recently for Obama. The book takes you to the streets of London, Scotland and Venezuela where she allows us to understand the influence of music in our lives, and how it intersects between class, culture and creativity.
Soul Music, Candace Allen
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Bookmateadded a book to the bookshelfAll That Jazz3 years ago
Michael Ondaatje's novel is a fictionalised version of Buddy Bolden life -- the man many feel more or less invented jazz in New Orleans at the turn of the 20th century in New Orleans. But there is no known recording of Bolden's music. Ondaatje re-invents Bolden and the world he lived in -- in New Orleans Red Light District – and make us hear the music he played. Bolden was obsessed with death, addicted to whiskey but was so talented in the music he unleashed on the community.

They say that jazzmen are generally cool and unsentimental characters, but this book highlights the struggles of schizophrenia, creativity and the lives that are changing in New Orleans at the beginning of the 20th century.
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Bookmateadded a book to the bookshelfAll That Jazz3 years ago
Art Pepper was American alto saxophonist and clarinetist, who started jamming at nightclubs since he was 13, and then professionally at 17. He was jazz musician, but his personal life left much to be desired. Yet eve as he went through drug addiction and jail stints, his records never dropped in quality.

Laurie Pepper, his third wife, gives us an insight into life with a man so madly-gifted in his music, yet so deeply troubled. Why would anyone stay in such a tumultuous relationship? But mind you, Laurie is no saint who saved Art, neither is she merely the woman behind him. Like Art, she is wonderfully talented and every inch his match.
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Bookmateadded a book to the bookshelfAll That Jazz3 years ago
The jazz age created many groundbreaking and revolutionary performers, but few remain lasting through mainstream memory. Charlie Parker was one of those amazing artists during the age, using his alto saxophone to create the bepop genre of jazz. All this even as he wrestled with drug addiction and personal demons. Stanley Crouch, an authority on the jazz culture and age, paints a wonderful biography of the man, chronicling his life and struggles from his childhood all the way to the height of his fame and eventual death at 34.
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Bookmateadded a book to the bookshelfAll That Jazz3 years ago
The title explains it all, really: stories during the jazz age on a beach resort involving two women. Get a look into the jazz age with American and British tourists on the French Riviera. We follow them for several days as they bathe (1920's talk for swimming), dine, converse, fall in and out of love, and watch one another. And the best part is that Delafield writes her characters with such subtletly and insight - you get to make up your mind about what kind of person they actually are.
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Bookmateadded a book to the bookshelfAll That Jazz3 years ago
Edward Kennedy "Duke" Ellington was the greatest jazz composer of the twentieth century—and an impenetrably enigmatic personality whom no one, not even his closest friends, claimed to understand. The grandson of a slave, he dropped out of high school to become one of the world’s most famous musicians, a showman of incomparable suavity who was as comfortable in Carnegie Hall as in the nightclubs where he honed his style.

"Duke" peels away countless layers of Ellington’s evasion and public deception to tell the unvarnished truth about the creative genius who inspired Miles Davis to say, "All the musicians should get together one certain day and get down on their knees and thank Duke."
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