Jazz in Its Time

Overview

From record album liner notes to serious academic pieces, Martin Williams has been perceptively chronicling the development of jazz for over three decades. In this, his newest collection of jazz writings, Williams brings together many of his best pieces and covers new ground, with short columns on Teddy Wilson and George Winston and a longer article, "How Long Has This Been Going On?," examining the current state of jazz. In this last work, Williams notes that jazz is experiencing a period of "stylistic ...

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Overview

From record album liner notes to serious academic pieces, Martin Williams has been perceptively chronicling the development of jazz for over three decades. In this, his newest collection of jazz writings, Williams brings together many of his best pieces and covers new ground, with short columns on Teddy Wilson and George Winston and a longer article, "How Long Has This Been Going On?," examining the current state of jazz. In this last work, Williams notes that jazz is experiencing a period of "stylistic retrenchment or, if you will, a period of conservatism," and questions the fusion of jazz with rock. Williams cites the opinion of Wynton Marsalis and a number of other musicians, who "seem to see the whole fusion thing as a kind of commercial opportunism and artistic blind alley, maybe even a betrayal of the music."
Arranged roughly according to the form of the writing (music reviews, profiles, etc.) the pieces included here examine the musicianship of jazz greats from Sidney Bechet to Ornette Coleman, including Lionel Hampton, Lee Konitz, Art Farmer, and others. There are also thought pieces on the development and direction of jazz and jazz scholarship. Together, these works provide an insightful overview of the development of jazz over the past twenty years.

"The best one-volume history of jazz we have."--American Record Guide.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780195069044
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 5/28/1991
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.19 (h) x 0.74 (d)

Meet the Author

Martin Williams has written and edited a number of books on jazz; his articles have appeared in such places as Harper's, Saturday Review, The New York Times, High Fidelity, Stereo Review, Down Beat, and Metronome.

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Table of Contents

I. Listening
Bechet the Prophet 3
Two About Pee Wee 7
One About Lester 11
Three About Coltrane 12
Jazz at the Movies 17
Miles Davis Live 21
Errors of Interest 25
Roaring 33
A Rock Cast in the Sea 35
Mr. Wilson 41
Navarro out of the Air 43
How Long Has This Been Going On? 45
This Fellow George Winston 59
II. Appreciations
Lee Konitz: A Career Renewed 65
Lionel Hampton: Major Contributions 70
Bud Freeman: The Needed Individual 76
Thad Jones: A Musical Family 81
Bobby Hackett: Everything with Feeling 86
Harry Carney: Forty-one Years at Home 91
III. On the Job
Condition Red 99
Whir-r-r-r 105
Stitt in the Studio 112
Rehearsal Diary 119
Record Date: Art Farmer and Jim Hall 130
Blues Night 137
Bash It 147
IV. Annotations
Count Basie in Kansas City 163
A Celebration of Trumpeters 169
New Orleans Horns: Freddy Keppard and Tommy Ladnier 169
King Oliver in New York 173
Louis Armstrong and Earl Hines, 1928 177
The Vintage Henry "Red" Allen, Jr. 179
Dizzy Gillespie: The Development of an American Artist 184
Miles Davis: Odyssey! 198
Charlie Parker: The Dial Recordings, Volume 2 201
The Modern Jazz Quartet: Plastic Dreams 207
Early Ornette 211
The Shape of Jazz to Come 211
Free Jazz 217
Twins 222
V. Writing and Reading
Criticism 229
Monk Goes to College 233
Biographies, Autobiographies, Profiles, and Oral History 236
Grove American I: Not Just Missing Persons 240
Grove American II: A Letter to a Friend 243
On Scholarship, Standards, and Aesthetics: In American Music We Are All on the Spot 246
Why Aren't We Using the Classics? 252
Index 257
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