History of Jazz

HISTORY OF JAZZ

The Creative Music Improvisers Forum: New Haven's AACM

Read "The Creative Music Improvisers Forum: New Haven's AACM" reviewed by Daniel Barbiero

The late 1960s through the 1970s and '80s were difficult years for jazz and jazz-derived improvised music, but they were also years that saw musicians--by necessity--respond to these difficulties with creative solutions. With first the rise and then the commercial dominance during those years of rock music and the corresponding eclipse of jazz, creative musicians in various parts of the country began to organize themselves into artist-run groups in order to ensure the survival of the music both commercially and ...

HISTORY OF JAZZ

Bird's Trumpets

Read "Bird's Trumpets" reviewed by Matt Lavelle

Looking closely at all the trumpet players that played with Thelonious Monk in a piece I wrote in March 2018, I decided to continue the focus, and explore the trumpet players that played with Charlie Parker. As challenging as the trumpet is to play, playing Bebop raised the technical bar. Playing with Charlie Parker at fast tempos where he thrived took trumpet playing to an extreme that may have never been matched since. Parker certainly enjoyed the alto saxophone and ...

HISTORY OF JAZZ

Chet Baker’s Singing: A Cultural Shift

Read "Chet Baker’s Singing: A Cultural Shift" reviewed by Steve Provizer

We think of the 1950's as a time of relative social conformity, but in fact, there were significant cultural shifts happening. For one, male stereotypes were being unpacked and to some degree, unfrozen. Where once films and music gave us male characters that were either hyper-macho or limp-wristedly homosexual, male characters and performers who showed emotional vulnerability began to emerge from the underground. Two musicians who were exemplars of this change were Frank Sinatra and Chet Baker. The ...

HISTORY OF JAZZ

Ella Plays Dice

Read "Ella Plays Dice" reviewed by Eve Goldberg

Ella Fitzgerald was eating a piece of pie when the police burst into her dressing room, guns drawn. Nearby, Dizzy Gillespie and saxophonist Illinois Jacquet were playing a game of craps. The place was Houston, Texas. The date was October 7, 1955. The occasion was a sold-out concert at The Music Hall, one stop on tour for Jazz At The Philharmonic. Standing in the wings while Gene Krupa's band performed on stage, tour producer Norman Granz heard the ...

HISTORY OF JAZZ

Monk's Trumpets

Read "Monk's Trumpets" reviewed by Matt Lavelle

Thelonious Monk's recording career as a leader only lasted twenty-four years, from 1947 to 1971. When it comes to horn players, most people interested in Monk associate him with the tenor saxophone, and rightfully so as Johnny Griffin, Sonny Rollins, John Coltrane, and Charlie Rouse stand tall in Monk's recorded legacy. The alto saxophone was present from his first record as a leader, but no alto players were able to contribute substantially beyond strong work as sidemen. Gigi Gryce stands ...

HISTORY OF JAZZ

Pittsburgh Jazz: A Brief History

Read "Pittsburgh Jazz: A Brief History" reviewed by Steve Rowland

This article was first published at the Explore PA History website. At first glance, Pittsburgh might not seem the most likely place to produce great jazz musicians. Situated on the western edge of the state, “Smoketown" was a gritty industrial city, better known for being the center of the nation's steel industry, than for its popular music or culture. Like jny: Philadelphia, its industries attracted many African Americans from the south, men and women who were looking for ...

HISTORY OF JAZZ

Philadelphia Jazz: A Brief History

Read "Philadelphia Jazz: A Brief History" reviewed by Jack McCarthy

This article was first published at the Encyclopedia of Greater Philadelphia website. Jazz began to emerge as a distinct musical style around the turn of the twentieth century, a merging of two vernacular African American musical styles—ragtime and blues—with elements of popular music. New Orleans, the “cradle of jazz," was the most important city in this process, with jny: Chicago and New York playing particularly significant roles in the 1920s and 1930s. By the mid-twentieth century Philadelphia had ...

HISTORY OF JAZZ

History of Jazz Timeline: Roots of Jazz

Read "History of Jazz Timeline: Roots of Jazz" reviewed by AAJ Staff

African and European Fusion African music featured complex cross-rhythms, slurs, melissma, falsetto, vibrato and simple melodies. Call and response form was employed. The leader would throw out a line and a chorus responded. Griots were African historians who kept complex records in their heads and related them via song. The Blues form may have derived from this West African culture. Derision songs were popular. European music featured complex melodies and ...

HISTORY OF JAZZ
HISTORY OF JAZZ

History of Jazz Timeline: Bibliography

Read "History of Jazz Timeline: Bibliography" reviewed by AAJ Staff

“Another View of Coleman," Downbeat 27:11 (26 May 1960):21. Arnaud, Gerald and Chesnel, Jacques. Masters of Jazz. Edinburgh: W & R Chambers Ltd 1991. Barlow, William. Looking Up at Down: The Emergence of the Blues Culture. Philadelphia: Temple University Press 1989. Bergerot, Frank and Merlin, Arnaud. The Story of Jazz Bop and Beyond. Harry N. Abrams, Inc. Bergreen, Laurence. Louis Armstrong: An Extravagant Life. New York: Broadway Books ...