Crepuscule w/ Nellie

Crepuscule w/ Nellie

by Joe Milazzo


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From the introduction by Robin Myrick:

With music, however, it’s all about the version — how a piece translates and is translated in the particular moment of inception, of recording, of the gig. So while there are as many versions of Monk’s story as there are covers of his compositions, the central risk in imagining the lives of Monk, Nica, and Nellie today is that those who would celebrate him as the elite trophy mold for troubled brilliance, and peg Nellie and Nica as simply the women behind the great man, have largely succeeded in making stock characters out of them already. In this respect, Crepuscule W/ Nellieattempts to enter a conversation that has been skewed and reframed for as long as journalists, biographers, academics, and fans have been trying to figure Monk out, or claiming to have a handle on his life and career.


As a version, this is the hidden track found in the parallel groove of the record, not the chord chart from the fake book by which we might learn to reconstruct Monk ourselves. This book is not a residency with the facts, or an attempt to put anything to bed when it comes to the symbiosis and duality of the world Monk existed in with Nellie and Nica. Nor is this jazz history run through the Ken Burns Photoshop filter for value-added grace or floaty, sepia-toned homage. This is an entirely different kind of being there, imagining there.


This is a book by which you will be charmed and confronted and ultimately tempted, and the abundance of your inquiry and the bread crumbs dropped by your search party cannot be cataloged or encompassed in a modest introduction such as this. It’s a story, not the story. It is made from diary entries, telephone calls, scenes, conversations, film negatives, recording masters, cartons, folders, handbills, all of which will enrobe you and strand you in the moment, and leave you not where you may expect. Yet Crepuscule W/ Nellie is not an improvisation. It’s as precise as it is surprising, capable of suspending time and holding it faithfully for the length of a perfect solo or one devastating note.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781937865979
Publisher: Civil Coping Mechanisms
Publication date: 01/08/2018
Pages: 410
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.91(d)

About the Author

Joe Milazzo is a writer, editor, educator and designer. His writings on music and experimental sound practice have appeared in Copper Press, Paris Transatlantic Magazine, One Final Note and Bagatellen, the latter for which he served as Editor-In-Chief. Milazzo¿s literary criticism has been published in Electronic Book Review, The Dallas Morning News, The Collagist, and HTMLGIANT. His fiction and poetry appears in Drunken Boat, Black Clock, Antennae, Super Arrow, H_NGM_N, kill author, Exits Are, the anthology Dirty : Dirty (also from Jaded Ibis Press), and elsewhere.

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