Lee Konitz: Conversations on the Improviser's Art

Lee Konitz: Conversations on the Improviser's Art

by Andy Hamilton
     
 

ISBN-10: 0472115871

ISBN-13: 9780472115877

Pub. Date: 08/08/2007

Publisher: University of Michigan Press

“Meticulously researched, detailed and documented, this long awaited overview justly establishes Konitz as one of the most consistently brilliant, adventurous and original improvisers in the jazz tradition—a genius as rare as Bird himself.”

—John Zorn

“Hamilton’s work may well mark the inception of a format new to writing on

Overview

“Meticulously researched, detailed and documented, this long awaited overview justly establishes Konitz as one of the most consistently brilliant, adventurous and original improvisers in the jazz tradition—a genius as rare as Bird himself.”

—John Zorn

“Hamilton’s work may well mark the inception of a format new to writing on Western music, one which avoids both the self-aggrandizing of autobiography and the stylized subjectification of biography.”

The Wire

“An extraordinary approach to a biography, with the man himself speaking for extended sessions. The main vibration I felt from Lee’s words was total honesty, almost to a fault. Konitz shows himself to be an acute observer of the scene, full of wisdom and deep musical insights, relevant to any historical period regardless of style. The asides by noted musicians are beautifully woven throughout the pages. I couldn’t put the book down—it is the definition of a living history.”

—David Liebman

The preeminent altoist associated with the “cool” school of jazz, Lee Konitz was one of the few saxophonists of his generation to forge a unique sound independent of the influence of Charlie Parker. In the late 1940s, Konitz began his career with the Claude Thornhill band, during which time he came into contact with Miles Davis, with whom he would later work on the legendary Birth of the Cool sessions. Konitz is perhaps best known through his association with Lennie Tristano, under whose influence much of his sound evolved, and for his work with Stan Kenton and Warne Marsh. His recordings have ranged from cool bop to experimental improvisation and have appeared on such labels as Prestige, Atlantic, Verve, and Polydor.

 

Crafted out of numerous interviews between the author and his subject, the book offers a unique look at the story of Lee Konitz’s life and music, detailing Konitz’s own insights into his musical education and his experiences with such figures as Miles Davis, Stan Kenton, Warne Marsh, Lennie Tristano, Charles Mingus, Bud Powell, and Bill Evans.

Andy Hamilton is a jazz pianist and contributor to major jazz and contemporary music magazines. He teaches philosophy, and the history and aesthetics of jazz, at Durham University in the United Kingdom. He is also the author of the book Aesthetics and Music (Continuum 2007).

Joe Lovano is a Grammy Award–winning tenor saxophonist. His most recent album is Streams of Expression.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780472115877
Publisher:
University of Michigan Press
Publication date:
08/08/2007
Series:
Jazz Perspectives Series
Pages:
320
Product dimensions:
6.13(w) x 9.25(h) x (d)

Table of Contents


Author's Introduction     xi
Foreword   Joe Lovano     xix
Prologue   Lee Konitz     xxi
Brief Biography of Lee Konitz     xxiii
Early Life and Career     1
Interview with John Zorn     6
Formative Influences: Lennie Tristano, Charlie Parker, and Lester Young     12
Interview with Phil Woods     25
Working with Tristano     27
Interviews with Ted Brown     35
Kenneth Noland     43
Early Collaborators: Miles Davis and Warne Marsh     45
Interviews with Kenny Wheeler     47
Mike Zwerin     50
Hal McKusick     50
George Russell     55
Clare Fischer     64
Billy Bauer     66
Sal Mosca     68
Alan Broadbent     70
The 1950s: Stan Kenton and Early Projects as Leader     79
Interviews with Jack Goodwin     83
Sonny Rollins     93
The Art of Improvisation     102
Interviews with Bob Brookmeyer     107
Rufus Reid     114
Conrad Cork     118
George Schuller     123
Harold Danko     128
Sheila Jordan     133
The 1960s: Motion     143
Interviews with Sonny Dallas     146
Dick Katz     148
Ornette Coleman     154
Wayne Shorter     159
The Instrument     161
Interviews with Larry Kart     164
Gunther Schuller     170
David Liebman     181
Frank Wunsch     184
The 1970s     185
Interviews with Paul Bley     188
Martial Solal     194
The Material: Standards, Blues, and Free     198
Interviews with Peggy Stern     203
Evan Parker     208
John Tchicai     212
Matt Wilson     216
Gary Foster     219
The 1980s to the Present     221
Interviews with Enrico Pieranunzi     224
Greg Osby     229
Guus Janssen     230
Bill Frisell     232
Musical Examples     239
Notes     253
Selected Album Listing     263
References     267
Bibliography: Major Articles on Lee Konitz     269
Index     271

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