Jazz Reading

BennyK

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High Times Hard Times .... Anita O'Day autobiography

Castles Made of Sound, the Gil Evans Story .... by Larry Hicock

Jazz Anecdotes ..... Bill Crow

Midnight at the Barrelhouse - the Johnny Otis Story ..... George Lipsitz

Remembering Bix : A Memoir of the Jazz Age .... Ralph Berton .
A 13 year old Josephus( 1)on the road with his drummer/brother Vic, in Biederbecke's 1920's band .

Morning Glory : Biography of Mary Lou Williams .... Linda Dahl
an inspiring story of transcendence


(1) as historical scribe attached to the Roman expeditionary legions .
 
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nolibos

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f.stahlenius

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My latest reads:

Idris Muhammad's Inside The Music: The Life Of Idris Muhammad (2012).

Matt Brennan's Kick It: A Social History of the Drum Kit (2020).

Enjoyed reading Ashley Kahn's Kind of Blue: The Making of a Musical Masterpiece (2007)
 

cribbon

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Thanks for the Buddy Rich Superdrummer book recommend. I hadn’t heard of that one. I try to read all I can on Buddy. Such an interesting life, although it’s not one I would have liked to lead, but it’s fascinating to read about.
Correction: My bad, the book is actually titled Super-Drummer, A Profile of Buddy Rich. The 16-page piece can also be found in American Musicians, 56 Portraits in Jazz by Balliet. The stand-alone book also includes some photos that were little known or seen before its publication, but most (if not all) of them are now easily found on the internet.

 

bellbrass

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Correction: My bad, the book is actually titled Super-Drummer, A Profile of Buddy Rich. The 16-page piece can also be found in American Musicians, 56 Portraits in Jazz by Balliet. The stand-alone book also includes some photos that were little known or seen before its publication, but most (if not all) of them are now easily found on the internet.

On sale for only $768.00. Better act quick!
 

RogersLudwig

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I was thinking about getting this book. Can you say more about it?
Mezz was a reed player, mostly clarinet, who started in Chicago when that was the epicenter of jazz in the 1920s and migrated to New York in the 1930s, when that was the epicenter. He was a proponent of the New Orleans style and became increasingly irrelevant. He recorded with Sidney Bechet and Tommy Ladnier (who died on his couch). He was known as THE pot dealer in NY and the running joke was that the “arrangements” he sent to his buddy Louis Armstrong in Europe were really Louis’ pot supply (Armstrong was known to smoke every dayof his life). The best pot of the day was known as “mighty mezz“, a term used in several songs of the era. Mezz marriied a black woman and as a dark-skinned, curly haired Jew, he jumped back and forth between the world’s of black and white culture and music. He was a real character and a decent musician

 

hardbat

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"Straight Life" is amazing. "How My Heart Sings" is also great.
Right now I'm reading "1001 Nights", by Richard Torres, about his time on the road with Kenton. It's a lot of fun.
 

cribbon

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noreastbob

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I thought from the thread title that this was gonna be about charts in their various forms.
A very informative list of literature here to consider!
 

BennyK

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I thought from the thread title that this was gonna be about charts in their various forms.
A very informative list of literature here to consider!

heh heh , me too ... that's why I avoided it at first .
 

BlackPearl

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Robin Kelley's book on Thelonious Monk, and Lewis Porter's book on John Coltrane are both faves of mine. Both THOROUGHLY explore the men, the life, their music, and the jazz culture that they lived in VERY well.
I would second the recommendation of the Monk biography. It was a great read, though it a bit sad in a lot of ways.
 

Deafmoon

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I loved the Stan Levey book, Jazz Heavyweight. It’s a very well written story about one of the often forgotten great jazz drummers. He led a very interesting life beyond jazz drumming as well. A great read.

Another great one is Buddy Rich - One of a Kind. Talk about an interesting life. He led a real Hollywood life, part playboy, part singer, but all drumming all the time. He was all in, 100% dedicated to his craft. Talk about a driven man!

Lastly, I’ll second Ed Shaugnessy’s book Lucky Drummer. Ed just seems to love his life and he really appreciated it. He never took his good fortune for granted. A polar opposite to Buddy Rich, but one of the few drummers that could keep up with him IMO.
The Buddy Rich One of A Kind Book needed to be proof read though. I read it and misspellings flawed it greatly. The Torment of Buddy Rich is a far better read.
 

Deafmoon

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Birds of Fire. The story of the creation of Fusion. 97875AC2-EF48-4FB4-8120-9A49011C8A31.jpeg Find this book, why Tony Williams went the direction he did. Great!
 
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drumreverie

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Birds of Fire. The story of the creation of Fusion. View attachment 479350
I prefer Stuart Nicholson's book "Jazz Rock: A History" as a complete examination of the creation and evolution of Fusion. His scope was much wider and much more complete. I didn't mention it earlier because it didn't seem to fit within the OP request. But it's a GREAT book, I learned A LOT from it.

If you are into that era of music, I also like "Miles Beyond: Electric Explorations of Miles Davis 1967-1991." Not "great" but very good, and very informative. There are lots of contributions from the many musicians involved.

MSG
 

hawker

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I loved the Stan Levey book, Jazz Heavyweight. It’s a very well written story about one of the often forgotten great jazz drummers. He led a very interesting life beyond jazz drumming as well. A great read.

Another great one is Buddy Rich - One of a Kind. Talk about an interesting life. He led a real Hollywood life, part playboy, part singer, but all drumming all the time. He was all in, 100% dedicated to his craft. Talk about a driven man!

Lastly, I’ll second Ed Shaugnessy’s book Lucky Drummer. Ed just seems to love his life and he really appreciated it. He never took his good fortune for granted. A polar opposite to Buddy Rich, but one of the few drummers that could keep up with him IMO.
Right on with all these books, great reads. And of course Mel Torme's bio of Buddy as well.
 


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