All About Jazz

Home » Articles » Book Reviews

Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

416

The Jazz CD Listener's Guide

AAJ Staff By

Sign in to view read count
The Jazz CD Listener's Guide by Howard J. Blumenthal
Billboard Books
ISBN 0-8230-7662-8

Listeners new to jazz now have an option to those big, fat, daunting record guides: "The Jazz CD Listener's Guide" is compact enough to fit in your back pocket as you cruise the aisles of your favorite record shop.

The guide's author, Howard J. Blumenthal focuses on what, in jazz, amounts to the basic repertoire: Pops, Duke, Basie, Bird, Monk, Trane, Mingus, Ornette, etc. He also throws the young lions in for good measure, and spices things up with some names you might not expect to see in such a basic overview, including the Art Ensemble of Chicago, Jan Garberek, Albert Ayler, Kenny Barron and John Surman.

Each artist gets a brief (very brief) bio and a listing of their most representative works. Since, for the most part, Blumenthal is writing about undisputed greats, there's little to disagree with in his assessments. The reviews are "good stuff-only," so newcomers can be assured that, unless they really don't care for a particular artist's stuff, they will be picking up good albums. All the records listed are currently in print.

For the beginning collector this is a nice first guide. It's very much along the lines of the "Rolling Stone Jazz Record Guide," which is now sadly out of print and far out of date. Longtime listeners won't find much here that they haven't seen before, but they may enjoy the book's portability and Blumenthal brief, but perceptive observations about the recordings.

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Related Articles

Read Led Zeppelin by Led Zeppelin Book Reviews
Led Zeppelin by Led Zeppelin
by Nenad Georgievski
Published: September 22, 2018
Read What's Big and Purple and Lives in the Ocean?: The Moby Grape Story Book Reviews
What's Big and Purple and Lives in the Ocean?: The...
by Doug Collette
Published: September 9, 2018
Read Jorma Kaukonen: Been So Long - My Life & Music Book Reviews
Jorma Kaukonen: Been So Long - My Life & Music
by Doug Collette
Published: August 25, 2018
Read Sophisticated Giant: The Life and Legacy of Dexter Gordon Book Reviews
Sophisticated Giant: The Life and Legacy of Dexter Gordon
by R.J. DeLuke
Published: August 21, 2018
Read Blues From the Bayou: The Rhythms of Baton Rouge by Julian C. Piper Book Reviews
Blues From the Bayou: The Rhythms of Baton Rouge by Julian...
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: August 20, 2018
Read Rhythm and Blues in New Orleans, 3rd Edition Book Reviews
Rhythm and Blues in New Orleans, 3rd Edition
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: August 18, 2018
Read "Sticky Fingers: The Life and Times of Jann Wenner and Rolling Stone Magazine" Book Reviews Sticky Fingers: The Life and Times of Jann Wenner and...
by Doug Collette
Published: November 18, 2017
Read "Rhythm and Blues in New Orleans, 3rd Edition" Book Reviews Rhythm and Blues in New Orleans, 3rd Edition
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: August 18, 2018
Read "Softly, With Feeling" Book Reviews Softly, With Feeling
by Richard J Salvucci
Published: October 24, 2017
Read "Astral Weeks: A Secret History of 1968" Book Reviews Astral Weeks: A Secret History of 1968
by Doug Collette
Published: April 14, 2018