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Music Jazz
by
Matthew W. Butterfield

Introduction

Jazz emerged as a distinct musical art form in early-20th-century America. Though jazz is thought to have originated primarily in New Orleans, important jazz traditions have also been associated with other American cities—most notably Chicago, Kansas City, New York, and Los Angeles. Generally regarded as one of the highest achievements of African American expressive culture, jazz has nevertheless drawn musicians from virtually every race, ethnicity, and nationality in the world. Indeed, though the core of the tradition is unquestionably American, important jazz scenes featuring non-American musicians have emerged internationally, especially during the second half of the 20th century in Europe, East Asia, and South Africa. The scholarly literature is quite vast and draws from a variety of fields, including historical musicology, ethnomusicology, and music theory. Academic scholarship on jazz arrived relatively late in the music’s history. It was preceded by a strong tradition of journalistic criticism, with early jazz histories and biographies written by avid fans rather than trained music scholars. Defining jazz has been central to delineating the disciplinary purview of jazz scholarship, but this has never been easy. As a body of more or less “popular” music disseminated in recorded form, the music has undergone rapid development over the course of its history, and each transformation in style has prompted debate among jazz musicians, critics, and fans as to whether or not the new style was in fact jazz. Such debates have often revolved around the role of improvisation and its relative emphasis in any given style, the degree to which each new form of the music could be understood to “swing”—i.e., to exhibit a valued rhythmic quality thought to be essential to good jazz—and the extent to which each new style manifested certain core African or African American musical concepts and principles. The latter consideration has prompted many scholars to eschew parochial considerations of style altogether and situate jazz not as a distinctive form of music in its own right but as one expression among many within the very broad category of “black music.” This article treats literature on the core of the jazz tradition, leaving questions of disciplinary purview aside for scholars working through these issues.

General Overviews

Szwed 2000 and Hasse 2000 offer excellent, very readable overviews of jazz history, the principal figures involved in its development, and the principles of its organization in performance. Both are targeted at novice readers with little or no formal training in music, but offer much useful information as a point of departure for trained music scholars, including listings of the most important jazz recordings. Kernfeld 1995 largely dispenses with style history, serving rather as a listening guide that focuses on the concepts and procedures employed by jazz musicians across a wide range of styles. The text enables the trained musician unfamiliar with jazz to understand in detail the elements that go into effective jazz performance. Kirchner 2000 and Cooke and Horn 2002 serve as introductions not so much to jazz but to jazz studies more generally. Kirchner 2000 is a useful reference with brief essays on each style of jazz, many of the key musicians in its history, and the specific innovations of the most significant performers on each common jazz instrument. Cooke and Horn 2002 is more scholarly in orientation, introducing readers to the major concerns and topical areas of jazz studies literature.

  • Cooke, Mervyn, and David Horn, eds. The Cambridge Companion to Jazz. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 2002.

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    Collection of nineteen specially commissioned essays by leading jazz scholars introducing the reader to a variety of topical areas and issues of major concern in the current jazz studies literature.

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  • Hasse, John Edward, ed. Jazz: The First Century. New York: Harper Collins, 2000.

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    Overview of jazz history accessible to novices. Each style period covered by a different author. Includes excellent color photographs, sidebar presentations supplementing the main text, and listings of key recordings for further listening. Unlike other texts, includes important chapters on jazz worldwide and late-20th-century trends and developments.

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  • Kernfeld, Barry. What to Listen for in Jazz. New Haven, CT, and London: Yale University Press, 1995.

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    Listening guide for trained musicians unfamiliar with jazz. Eschews historical overview in favor of detailed discussion of musical concepts and procedures common to jazz performance across a range of styles. Includes compact disc with twenty-one jazz recordings, many passages of which are transcribed and discussed in detail in the text.

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  • Kirchner, Bill, ed. The Oxford Companion to Jazz. Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 2000.

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    Collection of sixty brief essays by leading jazz scholars on major jazz styles, historical periods, and significant jazz musicians. Also includes a series of essays on each jazz instrument, detailing the major performers on each and their chief innovations.

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  • Szwed, John F. Jazz 101: A Complete Guide to Learning and Loving Jazz. New York: Hyperion, 2000.

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    Targeted at novices, this text includes a brief introduction to concepts and procedures informing jazz performance practice. Provides an historical overview tracing the various styles of jazz and its major historical figures from the origins through the 1990s. Includes useful sidebar discussions of particular recordings with suggestions for further listening.

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Reference Works

The largest, most comprehensive reference guide to jazz is The New Grove Dictionary of Jazz (Kernfeld 2002). Since publication of its second print edition, it has been folded into Grove Music Online, which is currently hosted at Oxford Music Online. Feather and Gitler 1999 provides concise biographical information on more than 3,300 jazz musicians. Cook 2005 is also a biographical reference, though it offers more direct criticism of the musicians it covers and their recordings.

  • Cook, Richard. Richard Cook’s Jazz Encyclopedia. New York: Penguin, 2005.

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    Includes more than 2,000 entries on jazz, its terminology, artists, and bands. Cook, an astute jazz critic and author of The Penguin Guide to Jazz Recordings, offers his own unflinching critical perspective on the musicians he covers.

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  • Feather, Leonard, and Ira Gitler. The Biographical Encyclopedia of Jazz. Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 1999.

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    The latest version of Leonard Feather’s Encyclopedia of Jazz first published in the 1950s. Provides concise biographies of more than 3,300 jazz musicians and significant jazz bands. Lists recommended recordings for each. Neglects many important jazz musicians active since the 1970s, however, especially those from outside the United States.

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  • Kernfeld, Barry, ed. The New Grove Dictionary of Jazz. London: Macmillan, 2002.

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    Edited by Barry Kernfeld, it includes approximately 7,750 entries on jazz musicians and jazz topics from more than three hundred contributors. Good source of bibliographic references. Also available online.

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Bibliographies

Meadows 2006 is the largest, most comprehensive bibliography of jazz research materials. Greenberg 2010 is smaller and more selective, focusing only on books about jazz published between 1990 and 1999. Waters and Titus 2000–2001, Waters and Titus 2002, and Waters and Titus 2003 provide non-annotated bibliographies for scholarly articles on jazz found in journals not specifically devoted to jazz for selected years. Their work is continued in McGowan and Desmeules 2011.

  • Greenberg, Janice Leslie Hochstat. Jazz Books in the 1990s: An Annotated Bibliography. Lanham, MD: Scarecrow, 2010.

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    The first installment of what is projected to be a decade-by-decade examination of the jazz literature. Contains more than seven hundred entries organized by type of publication. Each entry is annotated and includes complete publication information. Also includes three indexes: by title, author, and subject.

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  • McGowan, James, and Robin Desmeules. “Jazz Research Bibliography (2005–2006).” Journal of Jazz Studies 7.1 (2011): 145–155.

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    A continuation of Waters and Titus’s “Jazz Research Bibliography,” this provides listings for scholarly articles on jazz found in journals not specifically devoted to jazz for the years 2005–2006. Entries are not annotated.

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  • Meadows, Eddie S. Jazz Scholarship and Pedagogy: A Research and Information Guide. 3d ed. New York and London: Routledge, 2006.

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    An enormous annotated bibliography and research guide to books, recordings, videos, and websites on jazz. Includes sections on criticism, reference works, jazz in world cultures, biographies and autobiographies, history surveys, regional studies, discographies, pedagogy, transcriptions, and more. Multiple indexes facilitate use. An invaluable resource for the serious study of jazz.

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  • Waters, Keith, and Jason R. Titus. “Jazz Research Bibliography (1999–2000).” Annual Review of Jazz Studies 11 (2000–2001): 283–286.

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    The first installment of Waters and Titus’s “Jazz Research Bibliography” provides listings of scholarly articles on jazz found in journals not specifically devoted to jazz for the years 1999–2000. Entries are not annotated.

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  • Waters, Keith, and Jason R. Titus. “Jazz Research Bibliography (2001–2002).” Annual Review of Jazz Studies 12 (2002): 235–237.

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    The second installment of Waters and Titus’s “Jazz Research Bibliography” provides listings of scholarly articles on jazz found in journals not specifically devoted to jazz for the years 2001–2002. Entries are not annotated.

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  • Waters, Keith, and Jason R. Titus. “Jazz Research Bibliography (2003–2004).” Annual Review of Jazz Studies 13 (2003): 227–232.

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    The third installment of Waters and Titus’s “Jazz Research Bibliography” provides listings for scholarly articles on jazz found in journals not specifically devoted to jazz for the years 2003–2004. Entries are not annotated.

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Discographies

Tom Lord’s The Jazz Discography 1992– is the most comprehensive listing of jazz recordings ever published. The product of more than twenty years’ research, its first twenty-five print volumes were released in 1992, followed by an additional nine supplementary volumes in the years that followed. Today, the complete discography is available online for a low monthly fee to subscribers. Similarly, AllMusic has made the move from print to the Internet at allmusic.com, where it is has been merged into a general database including their entire collection of discographic guides for use free of charge. Cook and Morton 2008 remains the standard print discography for jazz recordings.

  • AllMusic.

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    Online database searchable by artist, album, and song. Each artist entry includes a brief biography, a discography, and a listing of specific songs recorded. Each album is rated and most are reviewed. Lacks critical session information of interest to jazz scholars, however—provides no personnel listings for recordings, for example.

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    • Cook, Richard, and Brian Morton. The Penguin Guide to Jazz Recordings. 9th ed. London: Penguin, 2008.

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      The best print discography for jazz recordings. Entries organized by musician. Each begins with brief biographical data and lists the musician’s recordings complete with label names and catalogue numbers, personnel, and recording dates. Recordings are rated and reviewed by the authors.

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    • Lord, Tom. The Jazz Discography. 34 vols. West Vancouver, Canada: Lord Music Reference, 1992–.

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      An exhaustive discography listing virtually every jazz recording session ever made. Each entry lists the ensemble name, the personnel involved, the songs recorded, and their label and catalogue numbers. The print edition, launched in 1992 and expanded periodically, consists of twenty-six volumes of discography listings, a two-volume musician index, a three-volume tune index, and three addendum volumes. A CD-ROM version, updated annually since its release in 2002, offers multiple convenient search options, as does the online version, introduced in 2008, available by subscription at The Jazz Discography.

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    Source Readings

    Collections of primary source materials for jazz studies are now available in a number of recent volumes. These typically consist of writings published in newspapers and magazines by avid fans (and hostile opponents) of the music, journalists, and critics. Autobiographical writings by jazz musicians are often included, as is the occasional classic piece of jazz scholarship. Koenig 2002 supplies the most comprehensive collection of source materials pertaining to the origins and evolution of early jazz. Walser 1999 is more selective, aiming to represent readings from the origins through the end of the 20th century. The best recent source for autobiographical writings from a wide variety of jazz musicians is Gottlieb 1996. Clark 2001 and O’Meally 1998 eschew the conventional chronology of jazz style periods and organize their collections around particular topics and themes, inviting a more interdisciplinary outlook. Meltzer 1993 and Meltzer 1999 are the most unusual volumes, with readings about jazz and jazz musicians drawn from atypical sources chosen for what they reveal about the use of jazz in the construction of racial identity.

    • Clark, Andrew, ed. Riffs & Choruses: A New Jazz Anthology. London and New York: Continuum, 2001.

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      An unusual anthology organized into ten topical sections, each of which includes a variety of readings spanning jazz history. Readings are drawn from a variety of primary, historical, critical, and literary sources. Emphasis is on interconnections of themes and ideas rather than on chronology.

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    • Gottlieb, Robert, ed. Reading Jazz: A Gathering of Autobiography, Reportage, and Criticism from 1919 to Now. New York: Pantheon, 1996.

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      This collection contains extensive writings and reflections from jazz musicians themselves, as well as some of the most thoughtful and eloquent jazz criticism written throughout jazz history.

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    • Koenig, Karl, ed. Jazz in Print (1856–1929): An Anthology of Selected Early Readings in Jazz History. Hillsdale, NY: Pendragon, 2002.

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      A massive collection of source readings treating the origins and evolution of early jazz. Selections drawn primarily from periodicals, and presented in chronological order, ranging from pre-jazz writings on music in slave culture through the Jazz Age. Includes a name index and a titled index, but no subject index.

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    • Meltzer, David, ed. Reading Jazz. San Francisco: Mercury House, 1993.

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      The first of two unusual volumes of primary source material collected by the poet David Meltzer concerning how jazz has been understood, defined, and experienced in relation to racial identity. Reading Jazz focuses on the writings of white critics, authors, and jazz musicians, and is organized chronologically, with major sections corresponding to conventional style periods in jazz history.

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    • Meltzer, David, ed. Writing Jazz. San Francisco: Mercury House, 1999.

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      Poet David Meltzer’s second volume of primary source materials concerning how jazz has been understood, defined, and experienced in relation to racial identity. Writing Jazz focuses on the writings of black critics, authors, and jazz musicians. As with Reading Jazz, the volume is organized chronologically, with major sections corresponding to conventional style periods in jazz history.

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    • O’Meally, Robert G., ed. The Jazz Cadence of American Culture. New York: Columbia University Press, 1998.

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      An interdisciplinary collection of postwar writing that explores jazz as an African American art form and the profound influence it has had on other aspects of American culture, such as literature, sports, dance, and even politics. Readings are drawn from jazz musicians, critics, scholars, novelists, and playwrights, among others.

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    • Walser, Robert, ed. Keeping Time: Readings in Jazz History. New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1999.

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      Balanced collection of readings from jazz fans, critics, musicians, and scholars. Each selection thoroughly cited and introduced by the editor, placing it in historical context. Readings are organized by decade, beginning with “First Accounts” and culminating in the 1990s. Especially useful as a classroom complement to any standard jazz textbook.

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    Collections of Essays

    The arrival of jazz as a serious area of music study in recent decades has led to the publication of several edited volumes featuring collections of essays authored by scholars from a variety of disciplines, jazz musicians, artists, critics, and even music producers and promoters. The interdisciplinary character of these collections is consistent with the pursuit of new modes of inquiry, especially poststructuralist and postmodernist critical theory, to enable the interrogation of the traditional modernist jazz canon, especially evident in Gabbard 1995. Fischlin and Heble 2004 is more narrowly focused on contemporary free jazz and the potentials offered by the study of improvisation, and by the place of gender and sexuality in the world of jazz performance. More eclectic is O’Meally, et al. 2004, which offers a variety of ways of understanding jazz and its impact on culture and other non-musical arts. Meanwhile, Burford 2001–2002, a festschrift honoring the late Mark Tucker, draws its interdisciplinarity from within the musicologies, with selections provided by historical musicologists, ethnomusicologists, and music theorists.

    • Burford, Mark, ed. “A Commemorative Festschrift in Honor of Mark Tucker.” Current Musicology 71–73 (2001–2002).

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      A special three-volume issue of the journal Current Musicology dedicated to the late Mark Tucker. Articles collected from many leading jazz scholars from within the musicologies. Organized into sections concerning historical studies, jazz musicians and their contexts, jazz analysis, and broader perspectives on jazz studies.

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    • Fischlin, Daniel, and Ajay Heble, eds. The Other Side of Nowhere: Jazz, Improvisation, and Communities in Dialogue. Middletown, CT: Wesleyan University Press, 2004.

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      A collection of essays emanating from the annual Guelph Jazz Festival and Colloquium. Focused largely on free jazz, or “experimental improvisational music,” from a range of disciplinary perspectives. Additional emphases include race and the place and experience of women in jazz.

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    • Gabbard, Krin, ed. Jazz among the Discourses. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 1995.

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      An interdisciplinary collection of essays that offers a critique of the modernist jazz canon. Contributors develop a new vision of jazz studies through engagement with postmodern and poststructuralist critical theories. Emphasis is placed on historiographic issues, in particular, with a greater focus on jazz culture than on jazz as music.

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    • O’Meally, Robert G., Brent Hayes Edwards, and Farah Jasmine Griffin, eds. Uptown Conversation: The New Jazz Studies. New York: Columbia University Press, 2004.

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      A product of the Jazz Study Group based at Columbia University in New York, this interdisciplinary collection offers new methods for the study of jazz history, its social contexts, and cultural significance.

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    Periodicals

    Many journals and magazines publish jazz research, but only a few are devoted exclusively to the music. Jazzforschung/Jazz Research 1969– is the longest currently running and has the most international scope. The Annual Review of Jazz Studies 1982–2009 contains much excellent material—especially analytical studies. It has been continued by the Journal of Jazz Studies 2011–. Jazz Perspectives 2007– and Jazz Research Journal 2007– are both fairly new journals drawing excellent scholarship from a wide range of disciplinary approaches. Journals that occasionally publish pieces on jazz include Black Music Research Journal, the Journal of the Society for American Music 2007–, and American Music.

    Magazines

    Magazines devoted exclusively to jazz have often provided rich source material for scholars. Such magazines typically include news of interest to jazz musicians and their fans, feature interviews with top musicians, reviews of new recordings, as well as articles by jazz journalists—many of whom emerge as the leading jazz critics of their generations. Today’s premier jazz periodicals include DownBeat 1934–, JazzTimes 1980–, and JAZZIZ 1983– magazines. Each is available in print and digital editions.

    • DownBeat. 1934–.

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      DownBeat is the longest-running magazine for jazz musicians, critics, and fans in America. It is published monthly. Of special interest are the annual Readers Poll and Critics Poll of the top active musicians on each instrument. Subscribers gain access to DownBeat’s online archives, which is a rich trove of primary source material dating back to the 1930s.

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    • JAZZIZ. 1983–.

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      Available in print and online, JAZZIZ releases a monthly interactive magazine in digital format, and four print issues per year, each of which comes with an exclusive two-CD set of music featured in the magazine. Subscribers gain online access to back issues.

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    • JazzTimes. 1980–.

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      JazzTimes magazine publishes ten issues per year. It includes regular columns, special theme issues, readers and critics polls, and an annual jazz education guide listing the top college jazz and music industry programs around the world.

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    History

    These texts serve as effective introductions to jazz historical scholarship. Gioia 1997 provides a rather standard telling of the story of jazz history in an up-to-date, very readable form. Shipton 2007, a greatly expanded second edition of the original volume published in 2001, is more provocative, calling into question a number of cherished historical myths underlying the traditional jazz historical narrative. Giddins and DeVeaux 2009 offers a rich context for the discussion of a core of selected recordings, which is treated in detail.

    • Giddins, Gary, and Scott DeVeaux. Jazz. New York and London: W. W. Norton, 2009.

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      Examines jazz in light of the broader cultural, political, social, and economic factors that intersected with its historical development. Introduces jazz terminology and performance concepts to readers lacking musical background. Discussion organized around and listening guides provided for seventy-eight recordings available on a separate four-CD set.

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    • Gioia, Ted. The History of Jazz. New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1997.

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      A fairly standard and very readable survey of jazz history. Insightful discussion of many central figures and their music with frequent reference to social and economic events and conditions shaping the activities of jazz musicians and their working environments.

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    • Shipton, Alyn. A New History of Jazz. 2d ed. New York: Continuum, 2007.

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      A comprehensive, voluminous history of jazz from its origins through “postmodern jazz.” Shipton draws substantially on oral history, much of it culled from his many years as a jazz commentator and on-air host on British radio, in order to overturn many of the enduring myths of jazz history.

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    Eras and Styles

    A number of excellent histories focused on particular periods in jazz history or on the development of specific jazz styles have appeared in recent decades. The most interesting of these go beyond discussion of key artists and their recordings to illuminate the social, economic, and political conditions of the music’s production and reception. These histories are discussed in two groups presented in chronological order below, with the rise of bebop in the 1940s as the dividing line. Although modern jazz is often thought to have begun with bebop, its emergence was very much rooted in the gradual collapse of the music economy of the swing era. Consequently, bebop is covered below with early jazz, whereas the various styles and movements it generated are discussed in a second category dealing with modern jazz.

    Early Jazz through Bebop

    Histories of periods and styles of jazz from the first half of the 20th century have grown increasingly sophisticated in their interpretations of the relationships between the music and its context. Peretti 1992 and Ogren 1989 offer excellent accounts of the early decades of jazz history, both drawing extensively on oral history materials to reveal the conditions out of which early jazz’s broad social and cultural meanings came to be understood. Driggs and Haddix 2005 focuses more narrowly on Kansas City, significant especially for the great territory bands based there in the 1930s whose style became one of the dominant models during the swing era. Stowe 1994 and Erenberg 1998 present richly textured histories of the swing era, revealing in different ways how deeply enmeshed in the fabric of American social and cultural life big-band jazz was at the time. DeVeaux 1997 traces the early careers of Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie, as well as Coleman Hawkins, as they made the transition from big-band dance musicians to featured artists in small bebop combos.

    • DeVeaux, Scott. The Birth of Bebop. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1997.

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      Traces the emergence and eventual recording of bebop in relation to the collapse of the economic structure of the swing era. Centers in particular on the career of Coleman Hawkins as an early exponent of the musical movement later led by Dizzy Gillespie, Charlie Parker, and Thelonious Monk.

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    • Driggs, Frank, and Chuck Haddix. Kansas City Jazz: From Ragtime to Bebop. New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2005.

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      A detailed analysis of the musicians and bands working in Kansas City in the early 20th century. Employs archival resources, oral histories, and government documents to chart the social and political forces particular to the region that shaped their careers.

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    • Erenberg, Lewis A. Swingin’ the Dream: Big Band Jazz and the Rebirth of American Culture. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1998.

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      A cultural and social history of the swing era. Traces the development of big band jazz from the 1920s through the early 1950s, placing emphasis on how the interactions between musicians, impresarios, critics, and audiences generated meanings out of big band jazz.

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    • Ogren, Kathy J. The Jazz Revolution: Twenties America and the Meaning of Jazz. New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1989.

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      A treatment of the “jazz controversy” in American culture from 1890 to 1930. Ogren reconstructs a performance history of jazz in major American cities from oral history materials, print media, jazz recordings, and trade publications. Investigates how jazz symbolized change in American social and cultural life.

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    • Peretti, Burton W. The Creation of Jazz: Music, Race, and Culture in Urban American. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1992.

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      A social and cultural history of early jazz tracing it from its rural roots to its formation in New Orleans and subsequent dissemination to northern cities, especially Chicago and New York, through 1940. Significant emphasis on oral history and the role played by race in the emergence of jazz.

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    • Stowe, David W. Swing Changes: Big-Band Jazz in New Deal America. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1994.

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      Uses swing-era jazz to construct a cultural history of dramatic social changes taking place in New Deal America. Draws parallels between swing and other social practices and domains to portray American culture as “swing shaped” during these years.

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    Modern Jazz after Bebop

    The musical, social, and cultural implications of bebop have reverberated for decades, generating a wide variety of responses from jazz musicians, their fans, and the critical establishment. Gioia 1992 treats the stylistic response of jazz musicians based in California in the 1940s and 1950s, whereas Saul 2003 addresses the “hard bop” musicians based largely in New York in the late 1950s and 1960s. Saul also addresses the political meanings that jazz accrued in the context of the civil rights movement, as do Anderson 2007 and Monson 2007. Anderson 2007 focuses in particular on the reception of free jazz and its sociocultural meanings and impact, whereas Monson 2007 places emphasis on the complex forms the political activism of musicians took during the 1950s and 1960s. Nicholson 1998 and Nicholson 1995 are very readable overviews of more recent developments in jazz history that have not yet been treated extensively in the literature. The former covers jazz-rock—what some have labeled generically “fusion”—from its origins in the 1960s through the 1990s, whereas the latter addresses the resurgent popularity of “mainstream” jazz in the 1980s.

    • Anderson, Iain. This Is Our Music: Free Jazz, the Sixties, and American Culture. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2007.

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      A cultural history of free jazz focused on its critical, audience, and institutional reception. Reveals how the music simultaneously reinforced and undermined the high-art status jazz had acquired by then. Analyzes the dilemma faced by musicians caught between a stance as alienated artists and their desire for popular success.

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    • Gioia, Ted. West Coast Jazz: Modern Jazz in California 1945–1960. New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1992.

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      Examines the music, musicians, geography, social situation, clubs, and culture of the jazz world of mid-20th-century California beginning with Dizzy Gillespie and Charlie Parker’s arrival in Los Angeles in late 1945. West Coast jazz emerges less as a specific style of jazz than a particular jazz scene.

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    • Monson, Ingrid. Freedom Sounds: Civil Rights Call Out to Jazz and Africa. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2007.

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      Examines jazz musicians’ responses to the civil rights, Black Power, and African Independence movements from 1950 to 1967. Reveals the forms their political action took in relation to their disparate musical styles and ideological values, and the economic and political constraints placed on their quest for self-determination as artists and individuals.

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    • Nicholson, Stuart. Jazz: The 1980s Resurgence. New York: DaCapo, 1995.

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      Surveys the many concurrent trends of jazz in the 1980s. Views each such trend as a distinct “subculture” with its own history, and thus treats each in a separate chapter.

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    • Nicholson, Stuart. Jazz-Rock: A History. New York: Schirmer, 1998.

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      Surveys jazz-rock from its origins into the 1990s. Argues that jazz musicians’ appropriation of rock elements was logical and inevitable in the context of the late 1960s and vital for the survival of jazz. Emphasizes the radical, progressive, and experimental dimensions of jazz-rock over the commercial excesses of “fusion.”

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    • Saul, Scott. Freedom Is, Freedom Ain’t: Jazz and the Making of the Sixties. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2003.

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      A history of “hard bop” and its social and political uses roughly between 1955 and 1965. Mediates how musicians understood their music, how others saw it, and how these perceptions related to the surrounding culture—especially concerning the meaning of “freedom.” Central focus is on music of Charles Mingus and John Coltrane.

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    Historiography and Canon Formation

    The large-scale arrival of jazz in the academic world beginning in the 1980s and the explosion of scholarship it generated led to a new critical discourse on jazz historiography and the political ramifications of the jazz canon. Tucker 2002 provides an excellent introduction to this literature. DeVeaux 1991 presents the central critique of the official narrative that had come to govern standard jazz history texts, a critique to which Prouty 2010 responds in his survey of textbooks targeted at the college market. Gennari 2006 approaches jazz historiography by examining the significant role critics have played in interpreting the music and shaping its discourse. Tomlinson 1992 and Gabbard 1995 both address the problems and challenges historians must deal with in confronting the formation of an increasingly immutable canon of classic jazz artists and recordings. Hersch 2008 critiques competing approaches to defining the jazz tradition in terms of their underlying logic and political implications.

    • DeVeaux, Scott. “Constructing the Jazz Tradition: Jazz Historiography.” Black American Literature Forum 25.3 (1991): 525–560.

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      Traces the construction of a “jazz tradition” in jazz criticism from the 1930s through the bebop, free jazz, and fusion periods. Shows how stylistic ruptures in the continuity of jazz history were often conveniently reconciled by the conception of a higher, organic jazz essence that transcended surface changes.

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    • Gabbard, Krin. “The Jazz Canon and Its Consequences.” In Jazz Among the Discourses. Edited by Krin Gabbard, 1–28. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 1995.

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      Discusses the formation of the jazz canon as a necessary condition for the scholarly professionalization of jazz studies. Examines the significant costs of this process at an historical moment when scholars in other disciplines are rejecting canons as discourses of power that reinforce the values of the canonizers.

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    • Gennari, John. Blowin’ Hot and Cool: Jazz and Its Critics. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2006.

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      A cultural studies approach to the history of jazz criticism. Reveals critics’ roles as interpreters of the music and its cultural significance, as advocates for musicians as writers and through various music industry roles, and as key figures in shaping public and scholarly perception of the jazz canon or tradition.

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    • Hersch, Charles. “Reconstructing the Jazz Tradition.” Jazz Research Journal 2.1 (2008): 7–28.

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      A critique of the prevailing approaches taken to the problem of defining the “jazz tradition.” Compares the claims of advocates of a narrowly defined tradition (“neotrads”) with those who view such a tradition as stifling and hegemonic (“antitrads”). Proposes to reconstruct the tradition in terms of a core with moveable boundaries.

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    • Prouty, Kenneth E. “Toward Jazz’s ‘Official’ History: The Debates and Discourses of Jazz History Textbooks.” Journal of Music History Pedagogy 1.1 (2010): 19–43.

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      An historiographic critique of jazz history textbooks designed for college courses. Points out the disparity between scholarly critiques of the jazz canon and the reliance of textbooks on that canon for practical pedagogical purposes.

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    • Tomlinson, Gary. “Cultural Dialogics and Jazz: A White Historian Signifies.” In Disciplining Music: Musicology and Its Canons. Edited by Katherine Bergeron and Philip V. Bohlman, 64–94. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1992.

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      A critique of efforts to establish a jazz canon on the basis of Eurocentric rules of aestheticism, transcendentalism, and formalism. Proposes instead a deinstitutionalized, dialogical model based in vernacular theories to keep in view the historical conditions under which meanings of jazz performances and recordings are created and recreated.

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    • Tucker, Sherrie. “Historiography.” In The New Grove Dictionary of Jazz. Vol. 2. Edited by Barry Kernfeld, 249–255 London: Macmillan, 2002.

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      A very clear overview of the history of writing about jazz. Discusses the many varied backgrounds of jazz historians, the kinds of histories they have written, and their motivations for doing so at particular historical moments. Also available in Grove Music Online by subscription.

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    Theory and Analysis

    The music-theoretical study of jazz shares numerous significant conceptual frameworks with traditional music theory, and many analytical methods designed for use with Western art music work equally well with jazz. But there are important differences—especially in the treatment of harmony—requiring new sets of concepts to illuminate the particular character of different forms of jazz, such that many authors distinguish “jazz theory” from mainstream music theory. With few exceptions, book-length studies of jazz theory have tended to be pedagogical in nature, designed for classroom use for instruction in jazz improvisation. Levine 1995 is the most widely used such text today. Most of the more speculative or analytical theory literature is published in articles, in either music theory journals or in one of the journals devoted explicitly to jazz. Martin 1996 provides a useful outline of this literature.

    • Levine, Mark. The Jazz Theory Book. Petaluma, CA: Sher Music, 1995.

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      Today’s most widely used textbook for jazz theory. Introduces chord/scale theory, strategies for improvisation, and common procedures for chord re-harmonization.

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    • Martin, Henry. “Jazz Theory: An Overview.” Annual Review of Jazz Studies 8 (1996): 1–17.

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      Offers an explanation of what jazz theory is, an overview of how it came into being as a distinct discourse, and a classification of approaches based on the objectives of the theorist. Cites many of the key texts in the historical development of jazz theory.

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    Harmony

    Studies of jazz harmony range from the general, intended to address jazz harmonic principles across a wide range of styles (see Martin 1988), to the specific, targeted at the music of a particular style of jazz (see Strunk 1979 and Block 1990) or the compositions of a single jazz musician (see Santa 2003 and Waters and Williams 2010).

    Melody

    Most analysis of improvised solos in jazz is implicitly about melody. The studies cited here aim to generalize about melodic practice beyond its explicit manifestation in any one particular solo. Strunk 1985 and Williams 1989 take different theoretical approaches to bebop melodic practice. The former aims to reconcile traditional interpretations of melodic tensions with their function in bebop; the latter employs the theories of Leonard B. Meyer and Eugene Narmour—what has come to be called the implication-realization model—to identify archetypal melodic structures in this repertoire. Strunk 1996, Martin 1996, and Larson 2009—the latter two among the only book-length monographs in the jazz theory literature outside of a pedagogical orientation—involve application of reductive analysis derived from Schenkerian theory to improvised jazz melodies. Owens 1995 (specifically his chapter 3 on “The Parker Style,” which is a distillation of a theory treated more exhaustively in his 1974 dissertation), Smith 1991, and Kenny 1999 each apply the theory of oral-formulaic composition—developed by Milman Parry and Albert Lord to deal with the performance of epic poetry—to explain the ways in which jazz musicians generate their improvised melodies.

    • Kenny, Barry. “Structure in Jazz Improvisation: A Formulaic Analysis of the Improvisations of Bill Evans.” Annual Review of Jazz Studies 10 (1999): 163–194.

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      Uncovers the formulaic grammar at the root of Bill Evans’s improvisational melodic language. Draws data from nine transcriptions of recorded performances between 1959–1977 to isolate Evans’s preferred melodic patterns. Structural analysis enables generalizations about contexts of use.

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    • Larson, Steve. Analyzing Jazz: A Schenkerian Approach. Hillsdale, NY: Pendragon, 2009.

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      The most comprehensive application of Schenkerian analytical techniques in the jazz theory literature. Addresses questions of method and analytical validity and provides richly detailed analyses of performances of Thelonious Monk’s composition “’Round Midnight” by Monk himself, Oscar Peterson, and Bill Evans, to exemplify the value of the approach.

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    • Martin, Henry. Charlie Parker and Thematic Improvisation. Lanham, MD, and London: Scarecrow, 1996.

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      A richly detailed Schenkerian approach to the improvised solos of Charlie Parker. Martin demonstrates middle-ground correspondences between Parker’s improvised solo lines and the composed melodies of the tunes he was performing.

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    • Owens, Thomas. Bebop: The Music and Its Players. New York: Oxford University Press, 1995.

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      An overview of the roles of each member of the conventional bebop ensemble, with discussion of the central musicians representative of the style. Chapter 3, “The Parker Style,” distills bebop melodic practice as a manifestation of oral-formulaic composition. Here, Owens presents sixteen formulas as the core of Parker’s style.

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    • Smith, Gregory. “In Quest of a New Perspective on Improvised Jazz: A View from the Balkans.” The World of Music: Journal of the International Institute for Traditional Music 33.3 (1991): 29–52.

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      Demonstrates the applicability of the Parry-Lord model of oral-formulaic composition to jazz improvisation. Provides an analysis of a short improvisation by jazz pianist Bill Evans to illustrate spontaneous creation of new phrases modeled on a few basic melodic patterns.

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    • Strunk, Steven. “Bebop Melodic Lines: Tonal Characteristics.” Annual Review of Jazz Studies 3 (1985): 97–120.

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      Examines the behavior of melodic “tensions” (i.e., dissonant chord extensions such as 9ths, 11ths, and 13ths) in varying harmonic contexts. Illustrates their use, means of resolution, and motivic organization in a variety of bebop melodies.

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    • Strunk, Steven. “Linear Intervallic Patterns in Jazz Repertory.” Annual Review of Jazz Studies 8 (1996): 63–115.

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      Demonstrates the characteristic usage of linear intervallic patterns—voice-leading patterns of repeated intervals or pairs of intervals between the outer voices of a musical texture—in the mainstream jazz repertory. Provides sixty-eight examples of eleven different patterns, with emphasis on oblique and contrary motion, chromatic inflections, suspensions, and extensions.

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    • Williams, James Kent. “Archetypal Schemata in Jazz Themes of the Bebop Era.” Annual Review of Jazz Studies 4 (1989): 49–74.

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      An application of Leonard B. Meyer’s and Eugene Narmour’s techniques for melodic analysis to the study of bebop melodies. Analyzes a sample of approximately 200 melodies composed by central bebop musicians of the 1940s and 1950s to demonstrate archetypal schemata for melodic organization in their music.

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    Rhythm

    A substantial literature has blossomed in recent years concerning rhythm in jazz. Three areas of research have been particularly prominent. The first concerns the mysterious rhythmic phenomenon known as “swing.” One vein of thought, represented most effectively by Prögler 1995, is that swing emanates from what the ethnomusicologist Charlies Keil has called “participatory discrepancies” (PDs)—subtle variations in timing, especially between the bass and drums in their articulation of the beat. Butterfield 2010 offers an empirical challenge to this theory, and proposes more subtle expressive effects for PDs. The second research area in recent literature on jazz rhythm has concerned the “swing ratio,” which refers to the specific durational relationship between successive eighth notes in the uneven division of the quarter-note beat in mainstream jazz. Friberg and Sundström 2002, Benadon 2006, and Honing and de Haas 2008 provide the most current and compelling research in this area. The third major research area concerns various means of generating “metric dissonance” in an improvised solo against the regular metric framework provided by the rhythm section accompaniment. Folio 1995 approaches this through a study of different forms of polyrhythm. Waters 1996 and Downs 2000–2001 examine a variety of metric displacements in the music of Herbie Hancock and Charlie Christian, respectively.

    • Benadon, Fernando. “Slicing the Beat: Jazz Eighth-Notes as Expressive Microrhythm.” Ethnomusicology 50 (2006): 73–98.

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      Examines variability of swing ratios among five jazz melody instrument players. Finds a strong tendency for the use of lower swing ratios, suggesting a common use of fairly even eighth notes by melody players. Presents evidence of systematic variation of swing ratios in relation to phrase structure.

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    • Butterfield, Matthew W. “Participatory Discrepancies and the Perception of Beats in Jazz.” Music Perception 27.3 (2010): 157–175.

      DOI: 10.1525/mp.2010.27.3.157Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

      Presents two experiments concerning the perception of asynchronous timing between bass and drums in the jazz rhythm section and its purported effects on the production of “swing.” Finds little evidence in support of claims that participatory discrepancies generate swing; presents an alternative explanation of their effects.

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    • Downs, Clive. “Metric Displacement in the Improvisation of Charlie Christian.” Annual Review of Jazz Studies 11 (2000–2001): 39–68.

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      Defines ten categories of devices for the production of metric displacement, and illustrates each with two examples drawn from the improvised solos of guitarist Charlie Christian.

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    • Folio, Cynthia. “An Analysis of Polyrhythm in Selected Improvised Jazz Solos.” In Concert Music, Rock, and Jazz since 1945: Essays and Analytical Studies. Edited by Elizabeth West Marvin and Richard Hermann, 103–134. Rochester, NY: University of Rochester Press, 1995.

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      An investigation of three kinds of polyrhythm in improvised jazz solos by Thelonious Monk, Ornette Coleman, and Eric Dolphy. Folio includes cross-rhythms, metric displacements, and “polytempo”—the use of fluctuating tempi against a steady tempo provided by a rhythm section.

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    • Friberg, Anders, and Andreas Sundström. “Swing Ratios and Ensemble Timing in Jazz Performance: Evidence for a Common Rhythmic Pattern.” Music Perception 19.3 (2002): 333–349.

      DOI: 10.1525/mp.2002.19.3.333Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

      Examines swing ratios and ensemble timing at a variety of tempos among jazz drummers and melody instrument players. Finds higher swing ratios among the former than the latter, a tendency of both to level off at fast tempos, and a tendency for melody players to synchronize upbeats with drummers but delay downbeats.

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    • Honing, Henkjan, and W. Bas de Haas. “Swing Once More: Relating Timing and Tempo in Expert Jazz Drumming.” Music Perception 25.5 (2008): 471–476.

      DOI: 10.1525/mp.2008.25.5.471Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

      An empirical study of swing ratios among three professional jazz drummers. Finds very little variance in swing ratio at any given tempo. Swing ratios do level off at rapid tempos but do not scale linearly with tempo, as suggested in Friberg and Sundström 2002.

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    • Prögler, J. A. “Searching for Swing: Participatory Discrepancies in the Jazz Rhythm Section.” Ethnomusicology 39 (1995): 21–54.

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      An exploration of the effects of asynchronous timing between bass and drums in the jazz rhythm section based on Charles Keil’s model of “participatory discrepancies,” or PDs. Such timing, according to the author, generates “swing.”

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    • Waters, Keith. “Blurring the Barline: Metric Displacement in the Piano Solos of Herbie Hancock.” Annual Review of Jazz Studies 8 (1996): 19–37.

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      Examines Hancock’s use of accentual shifts, displaced motivic repetitions, and polymeter to generate rhythmic tension at both the surface level and at higher levels of metric structure. Illustrates these techniques through analysis of Hancock’s piano solo on his twelve-bar blues composition “Eye of the Hurricane.”

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    Composition and Arranging

    The central concern with improvisation in so much of the jazz theory literature often blinds critics, fans, and scholars to the significant compositional work done by many giants of the jazz tradition. Duke Ellington’s compositional work typically receives the most scholarly attention. Howland 2009 treats his extended concert-style works from early in his career through the mid-1940s. Green 2008 looks at the motivic integrity of some of Ellington’s finest compositions, both short and long, in terms of the Schoenbergian concept of “Grundgestalt.” Another favorite jazz composer is the prolific Thelonious Monk. Caniato 1999 focuses narrowly on Monk’s “Ruby, My Dear” as a case study illuminating his compositioinal process. Straka 1999 aims to generalize about Monk’s compositional style through an analysis of thirteen of the eccentric pianist’s most famous compositions. Coltrane’s compositional oeuvre receives quite a lot of scholarly treatment as well—particularly his use of harmony in the late 1950s. Bruckner-Haring 2008 aims to generalize more broadly about three different kinds of pieces Coltrane composed during his career. Machlin 1994–1995 reveals the value of sketch studies in his essay on Fats Waller, and Reeves 2002 address the techniques of arrangement for jazz orchestra of critical favorite Gil Evans.

    • Bruckner-Haring, Christa. “John Coltrane as a Composer.” Jazz Research Journal 2.2 (2008): 133–153.

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      Presents an overview of Coltrane’s compositional technique through analysis of fifty-five selected recordings. Organizes them in three categories: blues pieces, pieces that employ functional harmony, and modal pieces. Discusses representative examples of each.

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    • Caniato, Michele. “From Popular Song to Jazz Composition: Thelonious Monk’s ‘Ruby, My Dear.’” Annual Review of Jazz Studies 10 (1999): 89–102.

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      Examines Monk’s compositional process on “Ruby, My Dear” and its relationship to popular song models of the day. Analysis focuses on the integration of melodic and harmonic elements, the alteration of formal structural events, the manipulation of motivic material, the organic integration of accompanying figures, and progressive tonality.

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    • Green, Edward. “It Don’t Mean a Thing If It Ain’t Got That Grundgestalt! Ellington from a Motivic Perspective.” Jazz Perspectives 2.2 (2008): 215–249.

      DOI: 10.1080/17494060802373416Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

      Proposes investigating Ellington’s compositional genius not in terms of orchestration and harmony—the traditional point of view—but in terms of the motivic integrity of his finest works. Draws on Arnold Schoenberg’s concept of “Grundgestalt” for analyses of “The Mooche,” “Ko-Ko,” and “Far East Suite.”

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    • Howland, John. “Ellingtonian Extended Composition and the Symphonic Jazz Model.” Annual Review of Jazz Studies 14 (2009): 1–64.

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      Traces relationships between Duke Ellington’s extended compositions and the “symphonic jazz” model of his predecessors in the 1920s, particularly Paul Whiteman and his chief arranger, Ferde Grofé. Discusses the compositional devices and forms employed in Ellington’s concert-style works up to and including Black, Brown, and Beige.

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    • Machlin, Paul S. “Fats Waller Composes: The Sketches, Drafts, and Lead Sheets in the Institute of Jazz Studies Collection.” Annual Review of Jazz Studies 7 (1994–1995): 1–24.

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      A study of some of Waller’s published sheet music, song lyrics, and a variety of autograph jottings, sketches, drafts, and lead sheets. Analysis of these materials suggests practical and aesthetic considerations that may have influenced Waller’s compositional decisions.

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    • Reeves, Scott D. “Gil Evans: The Art of Musical Transformation.” Annual Review of Jazz Studies 12 (2002): 1–40.

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      A study of Gil Evans’s techniques of arrangement for the jazz orchestra. Detailed discussion of Evans’s use of timbre, form, melody, harmony, and rhythm. Analysis of some of Evans’s jazz arrangements of works of Western art music.

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    • Straka, Manfred. “Untersuchungen zu Kompositionen von Thelonious Monk.” Jazzforschung/Jazz Research 31 (1999): 89–118.

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      A study of thirteen compositions by Thelonious Monk leads to generalizations about his style. Analyses reveal preferred forms, use of unusual meters and asymmetrical beat groupings within phrases, harmonic progressions characterized by chord substitutions and chromatic inflections, and melodies featuring sharp dissonances, unexpected notes and intervals, and jarring rhythmic displacements. In German.

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    Analysis

    Much of the jazz theory literature consists of published analyses of the improvised solos of specific musicians or groups of musicians representative of a particular style. There is, however, a significant speculative literature on the nature of music analysis when applied to jazz, the challenges faced by the analyst of improvised music, and the function and value of analysis itself. Owens 2002 provides the best introduction to jazz analysis. He gives both a history of its development and a survey of approaches taken by various scholars. Kenny 1999 provides a more detailed discussion of the many approaches taken to jazz analysis, with a special concern for its utility in improvisational pedagogy. Jost 1999 summarizes many of the problems analysts encounter in their efforts to analyze jazz. Methodological surveys are provided by Gushee 1991 (originally published in 1977, but still useful), Potter 1992, and Brownell 1994. Butterfield 2001–2002 presents a critical examination of the function and value of jazz analysis.

    • Brownell, John. “Analytical Models of Jazz Improvisation.” Jazzforschung/Jazz Research 26 (1994): 9–29.

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      Surveys various analytical models for jazz improvisation in terms of the position they take with relation to the object analyzed. Contrasts reductive models that treat improvisation as a product, such as a musical score, with more process-oriented approaches such as formulaic composition or generative-grammar models derived from linguistics.

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    • Butterfield, Matthew W. “Music Analysis and the Social Life of Jazz Recordings.” Current Musicology 71–73 (2001–2002): 324–352.

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      Explores the paradoxical relationship between live jazz performance as an integrative social practice and music analysis as a solitary activity conducted with recordings. Calls for a new jazz analytical practice based on musicianship training to develop listener involvement strategies in live jazz performance events.

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    • Gushee, Lawrence. “Lester Young’s ‘Shoeshine Boy.’” In A Lester Young Reader. Edited by Lewis Porter, 224–254. Washington, DC: Smithsonian Institution Press, 1991.

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      Examines four recordings of Lester Young’s “Shoe Shine Boy” to illuminate processes of improvisation and composition. Advocates a versatile approach to jazz analysis and illustrates four potential models: motivic, formulaic, schematic, and semiotic.

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    • Jost, Ekkehard. “Über Einige Probleme Jazzmusikalischer Analyse.” Jazzforschung=Jazz Research 31 (1999): 11–18.

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      A general discussion of problems faced in the analysis of jazz. Addresses the constraints imposed by an analyst’s goals and interests and by the particular kind of music being discussed. Also discusses the problems of transcription and the analysis of improvisation as process. In German.

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    • Kenny, Barry. “Jazz Analysis as Cultural Imperative (and Other Urban Myths): A Critical Overview of Jazz Analysis and Its Relationship to Pedagogy.” Research Studies in Music Education 13 (1999): 56–80.

      DOI: 10.1177/1321103X9901300106Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

      Provides a critical overview of jazz analysis. Includes discussion of its major methodologies, its relationship with performance pedagogy—especially as it either promotes or inhibits the learning of improvisation—and theoretical issues concerned with representing and analyzing jazz.

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    • Owens, Thomas. “Analysing Jazz.” In The Cambridge Companion to Jazz. Edited by Mervyn Cooke and David Horn, 286–297. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 2002.

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      An overview of the history of jazz analysis and a survey of approaches taken by the leading critics, theorists, and musicologists.

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    • Potter, Gary M. “Analyzing Improvised Jazz.” College Music Symposium 32 (1992): 143–160.

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      Presents an overview of methods for analyzing improvised jazz solos and introduces an analytical approach synthesizing other methods. Demonstrates this approach with an analysis of a solo by saxophonist Julian “Cannonball” Adderley.

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    Exemplary Analyses

    Many outstanding analyses of improvised jazz solos have been published in recent years. The analysis symposium “Alternate Takes—Stella by Starlight” (Berger, et al. 1997–), published in Annual Review of Jazz Studies, provides an excellent introduction to the array of approaches taken by some of the leading analysts of the late 1990s. Givan 2001–2002 and Al-Zand 2005 offer insightful analyses that illuminate the improvisational process. Maxile 2009 blends traditional analytical techniques with “topical” analysis to reveal layers of African American vernacular expressivity and meaning in Mingus’s “Ecclusiastics.” Monson 1994 goes further to employ music analysis to illuminate cultural critique.

    • Al-Zand, Karim. “Improvisation as Continually Juggled Priorities: Julian ‘Cannonball’ Adderley’s ‘Straight No Chaser.’” Journal of Music Theory 49 (2005): 209–239.

      DOI: 10.1215/00222909-007Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

      Contrasts two thought processes involved in successful improvisation: (1) the reflective presentation of musical ideas and (2) the reactive interaction with other members of the ensemble in a constantly unfolding dialogued. Analysis illustrates how Cannonball Adderley juggles these priorities in a real-time context in his performance of “Straight No Chaser.”

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    • Berger, Edward, Dan Morgenstern, David Cayer, and Henry Martin, eds. “An Analysis Symposium: Alternate Takes—Stella by Starlight.” Annual Review of Jazz Studies 9 (1997–1998): 1–110.

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      A collection of five analyses, one each by Cynthia Folio, James Kent Williams, Steve Larson, Steve Lindeman, and Henry Martin, of different artists’ performances of the jazz standard “Stella by Starlight.” Response from Allen Forte follows.

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    • Givan, Ben. “Discontinuity in the Music of Django Reinhardt.” Current Musicology 71–73 (2001–2002): 232–275.

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      Responds to the critical perception of radical discontinuities in the improvisations of guitarist Django Reinhardt. Proposes that discontinuous regions in Reinhardt’s solos are manifestations of different strata of his subjective consciousness. Analyses reveal that such discontinuities signal shifts of attention between “foreground” improvisation, melodic paraphrase, and repetitive “background” patterns.

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    • Maxile, Horace J. “Churchy Blues, Bluesy Church: Vernacular Tropes, Expression, and Structure in Charles Mingus’s ‘Ecclusiastics.’” Annual Review of Jazz Studies 14 (2009): 65–81.

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      Explores the interplay between the structural attributes of “Ecclusiastics” and a variety of African American vernacular tropes and expressive devices. Blends conventional formal analysis, Schenkerian analysis, and topical analysis to address the structural organization and expressive content of the performance.

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    • Monson, Ingrid. “Doubleness and Jazz Improvisation: Irony, Parody, and Ethnomusicology.” Critical Inquiry 20 (1994): 283–313.

      DOI: 10.1086/448712Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

      Analysis of selected pieces by John Coltrane, Roland Kirk, and Jaki Byard reveals ways of conveying irony and cultural critique through instrumental music. Adapts the notion of “doubleness” from W. E. B. Du Bois and “Signifyin(g)” from Henry Louis Gates, Jr., as interpretive tools in developing a heterogeneous concept of identity.

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    Ensemble Interaction

    Another strain of analysis concerns not the improvised melodies of jazz soloists or the compositional structure of the works they perform, but the processes of ensemble interaction that are a central aspect of jazz performance. Rinzler 1988 addresses some of the basic interactive practices characteristic of small combo performance in modern jazz. Monson 1996 offers the most comprehensive treatment of interaction in jazz, with a special focus on the rhythm section. Dybo 1999 presents a phenomenological approach to the issue of interaction in response to Monson and others.

    • Dybo, Tor. “Analyzing Interaction During Jazz Improvisation.” Jazzforschung/Jazz Research 31 (1999): 51–64.

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      Proposes a phenomenological approach to interaction analysis in jazz. Factors in the relevance of performance space and atmosphere in considering face-to-face contact between musicians during improvisation, contact between them and their audiences, and the direct relationship between the musicians and their instruments.

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    • Monson, Ingrid. Saying Something: Jazz Improvisation and Interaction. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1996.

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      An ethnographic study of improvisational interaction and interplay among the members of the jazz rhythm section. Music analysis is juxtaposed against and informed by musicians’ own accounts of their performance decisions.

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    • Rinzler, Paul. “Preliminary Thoughts on Analyzing Musical Interaction among Jazz Performers.” Annual Review of Jazz Studies 4 (1988): 153–160.

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      Overview of issues involved in the analysis of musical interaction in jazz performance. Identifies five widespread processes of interaction: call and response, fills, accents to close formal units, common motives, and responding to peaks of the soloist. Illustrates with analysis of Phil Woods’s “Along Came Betty.”

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    Ethnographic Studies

    Recent research on jazz by ethnomusicologists has gone a long way towards clarifying jazz performance practices and dispelling certain myths about the music. Berliner 1994 treats exhaustively the processes by which jazz musicians come to learn their craft. Monson 1996 is focused more narrowly on the interactive processes shaping jazz rhythm section play and their implications for the articulation of identity, politics, and race. Whereas Berliner, Monson, and many others focus their research on small jazz combos, Stewart 2007 documents and interprets the thriving big-band scene of contemporary New York City. Austerlitz 2005 offers more of a global perspective, finding evidence of a “jazz consciousness” in jazz scenes from the Dominican Republic to Finland. Jackson 2000 and Scruggs 2001–2002 focus on jazz performance events, the former in terms of performance ritual and aesthetic sensibility, the latter in relation to the complex social and political dynamics of an ethnically charged social space.

    • Austerlitz, Paul. Jazz Consciousness: Music, Race, and Humanity. Middletown, CT: Wesleyan University Press, 2005.

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      An investigation of “jazz consciousness” in the United States and in a variety of transnational scenes, including the Dominican Republic and Finland. Views jazz musicians as constituting a transnational or cosmopolitan community united by the music’s capacity to attain “planetary humanism.”

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    • Berliner, Paul. Thinking in Jazz: The Infinite Art of Improvisation. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1994.

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      A study of the processes by which jazz musicians, individually and collectively, learn to improvise. Based on ethnographic fieldwork with fifty-two professional jazz musicians. Includes transcriptions and analysis treating the practices of each instrumental part in the conventional small jazz combo.

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    • Jackson, Travis A. “Jazz Performance as Ritual: The Blues Aesthetic and the African Diaspora.” In The African Diaspora: A Musical Perspective. Edited by Ingrid Monson, 23–82. New York: Routledge, 2000.

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      Explores jazz performance practice in terms of a “blues aesthetic,” and poses connections to performance rituals and aesthetics in other Black Atlantic musics. Blends research on African American music with ethnographic fieldwork conducted in New York in the mid-1990s.

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    • Monson, Ingrid. Saying Something: Jazz Improvisation and Interaction. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1996.

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      Ethnographic study of improvisational interaction among the members of the jazz rhythm section. Music analysis is juxtaposed against and informed by musicians’ own accounts of their performance decisions. Explores musical articulation of identity, politics, and race, with interaction in jazz improvisation seen as a model for social and cultural values.

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    • Scruggs, Thomas M. “‘Come on in North Side, You’re Just in Time’: Musical-Verbal Performance and the Negotiation of Ethnically Segregated Social Space.” Current Musicology 71–73 (2001–2002): 179–199.

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      An ethnographic study of saxophonist Von Freeman’s Monday night performances at the Enterprise Lounge on Chicago’s South Side through the 1970s and 1980s. Focuses on the interrelationship of music and language as aspects of a performed event in an ethnically charged social space.

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    • Stewart, Alex. Making the Scene: Contemporary New York City Big Band Jazz. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2007.

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      Study of big bands in New York City in the late 1990s and early 2000s demonstrating their ongoing role as social networks, compositional and skill-building resources for jazz musicians. Based on historical research and ethnographic fieldwork on ensembles ranging from “rehearsal bands” to major repertory orchestras.

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    Criticism

    Long before jazz was viewed as a proper topic for scholarly research, a significant tradition of jazz criticism was already well established. Jazz critics were typically journalists and not trained musicologists. They served many roles, as documented in Gennari 2006: they interpreted the music for its audience, interviewed musicians, advocated for them or for particular styles of jazz, documented jazz history, and shaped public perception of the jazz tradition, its canon, and the significant issues the music and musicians faced at any given historical moment. On occasion, they even played roles in the music industry, either in arranging recording sessions or promoting concerts. Gottlieb 1996 collects many of the classic pieces of jazz criticism from its early decades. Balliett 2000, Hentoff 2010, and Morgenstern 2004 are collections of writings from three of the most prolific and significant jazz critics of the last fifty years. Their tradition of outstanding jazz criticism lives on in Giddins 1998, Crouch 2006, and Ratliff 2008.

    • Balliett, Whitney. Collected Works: A Journal of Jazz 1954–2000. New York: St. Martin’s Griffin, 2000.

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      A “distillation” of Balliett’s best writings, most published in The New Yorker and the Saturday Review. Includes pieces ranging from brief performance reviews to in-depth analyses of individual artists’ works and their approaches to improvisation. Writings are organized in the volume by decade.

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    • Crouch, Stanley. Considering Genius: Writings on Jazz. New York: Basic Civitas, 2006.

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      A sampling of Crouch’s writings on jazz since 1977. An opening prologue delineates his aesthetic position on jazz. Other writings include essays—some quite controversial—on particular musicians, a debate with Amiri Baraka, and more introspective or reflective pieces on the state of jazz and the effects of its criticism.

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    • Gennari, John. Blowin’ Hot and Cool: Jazz and Its Critics. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2006.

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      A cultural studies approach to the history of jazz criticism. Reveals critics’ roles as interpreters of the music and its cultural significance, as advocates for musicians as writers and through various music industry roles, and as key figures in shaping public and scholarly perception of the jazz canon or tradition.

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    • Giddins, Gary. Visions of Jazz: The First Century. Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 1998.

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      A compendium of seventy-nine profiles of many of the major figures of jazz history, presented in loosely chronological order. These are expanded versions of articles originally published as columns in the Village Voice. Significant concentration on young jazz artists still active today.

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    • Gottlieb, Robert, ed. Reading Jazz: A Gathering of Autobiography, Reportage, and Criticism from 1919 to Now. New York: Pantheon, 1996.

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      This collection contains extensive writings and reflections from jazz musicians themselves, as well as some of the most thoughtful and eloquent jazz criticism throughout jazz history. Part 3 in particular is devoted to criticism.

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    • Hentoff, Nat. At the Jazz Band Ball: Sixty Years on the Jazz Scene. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2010.

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      A collection of sixty-four interviews, essays, profiles of musicians, and personal recollections, most published previously in JazzTimes or The Wall Street Journal. Essays concern the partnership of jazz and education, social justice issues such as health care and civil rights, and jazz as an agent of social change.

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    • Morgenstern, Dan. Living With Jazz: A Reader. Edited by Sheldon Meyer. New York: Pantheon, 2004.

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      A collection of half a century of musicians’ profiles, record liner notes, record and show reviews from the former editor of Metronome, Jazz, and Down Beat. Also includes a survey of the history of recorded jazz, and considerations of jazz’s relationship to theater, dance, film, and television.

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    • Ratliff, Ben. The Jazz Ear: Conversations Over Music. New York: Times Books, 2008.

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      A collection of fifteen relatively recent interviews of prominent contemporary jazz musicians originally published in the New York Times. Ratliff asked all of the musicians to select and discuss up to six recordings that had inspired their own music.

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    Autobiography

    There are dozens of exceptional autobiographies by famous jazz musicians. Whether written by the musician alone or with the help of another writer, they offer firsthand accounts of many of the major events that shaped jazz history, thoughtful observations on the societies they were a part of, and reflections on their own music as well as that of their fellow musicians. A useful point of entry to jazz autobiography is Gottlieb 1996, who provides excerpts from autobiographical writings by a wide variety of musicians from across jazz history. Ellington 1976, Gillespie 1979, and Holiday 1956 are classics of the genre, still widely read and frequently cited in the jazz historical literature. Armstrong 1999 is only the most recent collection of autobiographical writings by the legendary trumpeter. It supplements two other autobiographies published during his lifetime: Swing That Music (1936) and Satchmo: My Life in New Orleans (1954). Mingus 1971, though often disjointed and rambling, provides a fascinating psychological portrait of one of the most interesting jazz personalities. Perhaps the most controversial jazz autobiography is Davis 1989. A fascinating self-portrait, it nevertheless reveals unapologetically many troubling facets of his character. Pepper and Pepper 1994 focus on what has often been a central theme of the jazz life: drug abuse.

    • Armstrong, Louis. Louis Armstrong in His Own Words: Selected Writings. Edited by Thomas Brothers. Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 1999.

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      A selection of nineteen previously unpublished items written by Armstrong, recently made available through the Armstrong estate. Includes letters, autobiographical writings, magazine articles, and essays. Reflections on his life and career, his views on racism, marijuana, bebop, and other jazz artists. Supplements earlier published autobiographies.

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    • Davis, Miles, with Quincy Troupe. Miles: The Autobiography. New York: Simon & Schuster, 1989.

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      The autobiography of jazz’s “Prince of Darkness,” trumpeter and bandleader Miles Davis. Discusses his early career, experiences with racism, and many of the musicians he performed with throughout his career. Shockingly direct about the unsavory side of his character, including his history of drug abuse and misogynistic tendencies, often expressed through violence.

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    • Ellington, Edward Kennedy. Music Is My Mistress. New York: DaCapo, 1976.

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      Duke Ellington’s autobiography, originally published in 1973. Arranged chronologically in eight “Acts,” each dealing with a different period of his life. Contains short sketches of countless figures who influenced the man and his music, essays on his views of music, God, and similar subjects. Comprehensive appendices document the band’s history.

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    • Gillespie, Dizzy, with Al Fraser. To Be or Not…to Bop. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1979.

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      The autobiography of Dizzy Gillespie, as told to Al Fraser and supplemented with comments drawn from interviews of Gillespie’s musical associates. Chronicles his musical career from childhood through his tours for the State Department in the 1950s and provides an account of his personal life.

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    • Gottlieb, Robert, ed. Reading Jazz: A Gathering of Autobiography, Reportage, and Criticism from 1919 to Now. New York: Pantheon, 1996.

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      Part 1 of this volume contains 335 pages of autobiographical writings by jazz musicians ranging from Jelly Roll Morton to Count Basie to Anthony Braxton. Many are excerpted from published autobiographies; others are drawn from interviews published in magazines and newspapers.

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    • Holiday, Billie, with William Dufty. Lady Sings the Blues. New York: Penguin, 1956.

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      Jazz singer Billie Holiday’s autobiography. Recounts her childhood in Baltimore, adolescence in 1920s Harlem, her emergence on the Harlem club scene, and her professional career. Addresses her experience of racial prejudice, her destructive addiction to heroin, and her personal relationships.

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    • Mingus, Charles. Beneath the Underdog. Edited by Nel King. New York: Vintage, 1971.

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      The autobiography of jazz bassist, composer, and bandleader Charles Mingus. Recounts his childhood in the Watts section of Los Angeles, his adolescent years, his apprenticeships with Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington, and Charlie Parker. A jumbled and rather fragmented narrative but entertaining, provocative, and illuminating.

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    • Pepper, Art, and Laurie Pepper. Straight Life: The Story of Art Pepper. 2d ed. New York: DaCapo, 1994.

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      An updated edition of the 1979 autobiography, this is the story of alto saxophonist Art Pepper. Less the story of his musical career, Pepper speaks directly of his problems with drug abuse, including addictions to both heroin and cocaine, and his time wasted in prison.

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    Scholarly Study of Autobiography

    Autobiographical writing by jazz musicians has itself been a topic of scholarly research. Ogren 1991 examines autobiographical writing for its expressive qualities, which she finds similar to jazz performance. Harlos 1995 takes a more explicitly theoretical approach to jazz autobiography, considering it from the perspective of traditional literary categories. Farrington 2006 identifies three categories to organize the narrative strategies of jazz autobiographies.

    • Farrington, Holly E. “Narrating the Jazz Life: Three Approaches to Jazz Autobiography.” Popular Music and Society 29.3 (2006): 375–386.

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      Surveys narrative strategies of African American jazz autobiographies published between 1936 and 1996. Proposes three approaches: epic, mythic, and labyrinthine.

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    • Harlos, Christopher. “Jazz Autobiography: Theory, Practice, Politics.” In Representing Jazz. Edited by Krin Gabbard, 131–166. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 1995.

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      A survey of jazz musicians’ approaches to and motivations for the writing of autobiography. Addresses problematic application of traditional literary categories to this genre of writing: fiction/nonfiction; written/oral; biography/autobiography. Proposes that jazz autobiography often stems from musicians’ dissatisfaction with jazz critics’ accounts and can serve as an alternative jazz history.

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    • Ogren, Kathy J. “‘Jazz Isn’t Just Me’: Jazz Autobiographies as Performance Personas.” In Jazz In Mind: Essays on the History and Meanings of Jazz. Edited by Reginald T. Buckner and Steven Welland, 112–127. Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 1991.

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      Examines memoirs of five black jazz musicians: Louis Armstrong, Jelly Roll Morton, Sidney Bechet, Willie “The Lion” Smith, and Danny Barker. Proposes parallels between their autobiographical narrative strategies and elements of jazz performance. Shows how they expressed pride in their humble origins and the African American culture they came from.

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    Biography

    Biographies of jazz musicians range broadly in focus and detail depending on their purpose, targeted audience, and the musical and scholarly background of the biographer. For basic biographical information about jazz musicians, Feather and Gitler 1999 is an excellent general reference. It includes entries on more than 3,300 jazz musicians, but it does not treat their lives in any detail. Shipton 1999 and Giddins 1988 are excellent examples of biographies written by jazz critics targeted at a general audience. Kelley 2009 is focused more on the details of Thelonious Monk’s life than on his music and is thus approachable by the non-musician. Porter 1998, Magee 2005, Tucker 1991, and Woideck 1998 are more appropriate for musically trained audiences, as each contains a fair amount of music analysis. Woideck 1998, in particular, centers his study of Charlie Parker on his musical development, with fairly minimal discussion of biographical detail.

    • Feather, Leonard, and Ira Gitler. The Biographical Encyclopedia of Jazz. Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 1999.

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      The latest version of Leonard Feather’s Encyclopedia of Jazz first published in the 1950s. The best source for capsule biographies of jazz musicians and bands with listings of recommended recordings. Neglects many important jazz musicians active since the 1970s, however, especially those from outside the United States.

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    • Giddins, Gary. Satchmo. New York: Doubleday, 1988.

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      An interpretation of Louis Armstrong’s life, career, and music. Centrally concerned with reconciling the conflicting impulses between entertainment and artistry that defined the trumpeter’s performance persona. Reveals the truth about his actual date of birth and includes writings from some of Armstrong’s unpublished letters and manuscripts.

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    • Kelley, Robin D. G. Thelonious Monk: The Life and Times of an American Original. New York: Free Press, 2009.

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      A comprehensive biography of pianist Thelonious Monk. Details Monk’s family life, friendships, and every phase of his career. Downplays Monk’s “weird” behavior and explains it as a manifestation of bipolar disorder unrecognized through much of his life. Draws extensively from family papers and private recordings shared by the Monk family.

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    • Magee, Jeffrey. The Uncrowned King of Swing: Fletcher Henderson and Big Band Jazz. New York: Oxford University Press, 2005.

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      A biography of bandleader and arranger Fletcher Henderson. Balanced evaluation of his personal history and music. Draws on oral histories, archival collections, sound recordings, and scores of his arrangements. Cogent analysis of the evolution of Henderson’s arranging style and his role as a “synergizer” in his band.

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    • Porter, Lewis. John Coltrane: His Life and Music. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1998.

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      A biography of saxophonist John Coltrane. Draws on printed and taped interviews, photos, and genealogical documents, much of which was previously unpublished. Biographical chapters interspersed with analytical chapters detailing Coltrane’s stylistic evolution as an improviser and composer. Provides an appendix with a comprehensive chronology of Coltrane’s performing career.

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    • Shipton, Alyn. Groovin’ High: The Life of Dizzy Gillespie. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1999.

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      Argues controversially that Gillespie, rather than Charlie Parker, had the most significant role in the creation of bebop. Addresses the transformation of Dizzy’s reputation from bebop revolutionary to elder statesman of jazz, his fathering of a daughter out of wedlock, and his conversion to the Baha’i faith.

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    • Tucker, Mark. Ellington: The Early Years. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1991.

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      Charts Ellington’s personal and artistic growth from childhood through 1927, when he began his famous five-year stint at the Cotton Club. Discusses his apprentice years in Washington DC through 1923 and his early years in New York until 1927. Biographical detail interspersed with musical analysis of early compositions and recordings.

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    • Woideck, Carl. Charlie Parker: His Music and Life. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1998.

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      Provides a concise biographical sketch of the great saxophonist’s life followed by an extensive and detailed investigation of his music. Treats the music in four major style periods corresponding to significant biographical events. Includes much transcription and detailed analysis to chart the development of Parker’s style.

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    Jazz and Race

    As a form of music linked since its inception to African American expressive culture, jazz has always been understood in relation to race. Race remains a core theme of jazz discourse, present whether addressed explicitly or lurking beneath the surface. The positions taken by critics and fans alike have varied widely with respect to the role of race in determining the music’s shape and history and the value ascribed to its “blackness.” Current debate often concerns whether to celebrate jazz as “black music” or to deny its racial particularity in favor of a more “colorblind” appreciation. Clark 2001 provides a useful introduction to this literature that includes excerpts from some of the most pointed discussions of jazz and race published since the 1940s. Hersch 2007 and Burke 2008 focus on the complex racial dynamics of specific places at formative moments in jazz history—the former on New Orleans in the early 20th century, the latter on New York’s 52nd Street in the 1930s and 1940s. Panish 1997 and Monson 1995 address the construction and representation of race in jazz discourse since the bebop era; both investigate in different ways the uses made of blackness in the service of white identity and the maintenance of white hegemony. Other scholars have addressed black identity in music beyond the narrow confines of jazz. They have tended to articulate interpretive stances or analytical strategies based upon vernacular aesthetic complexes applicable to many varieties of African American music. Thus Floyd 1995 articulates an historical narrative emphasizing musical, conceptual, and aesthetic similarities and continuities between jazz and other forms of black music; Jackson 2000 identifies a “blues aesthetic” guiding jazz performance practice and explores its relationship to other musical traditions in the African diaspora; and Ramsey 2003 considers the similar techniques and conceptual frameworks underlying jazz, rhythm and blues, and gospel, each of them expressions of a distinct Afro-modernism stemming from social transformations begun in the 1940s.

    • Burke, Patrick. Come In and Hear the Truth: Jazz and Race on 52nd Street. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2008.

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      A musical and social history of New York’s 52nd Street from 1930 to 1950. Examines the coexistence of multiple musical styles on the street, the interracial influence and collaboration—as well as tension—among the musicians who performed there, and the shifting notions of authenticity about jazz and its relation to race.

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    • Clark, Andrew, ed. Riffs & Choruses: A New Jazz Anthology. London and New York: Continuum, 2001.

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      An anthology organized into ten topical sections, each of which includes a variety of readings from across jazz history. “Riff 5” includes excerpts from several authors’ writings on jazz and race, and provides a useful introduction and historical overview to the issue.

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    • Floyd, Samuel A., Jr. The Power of Black Music: Interpreting Its History from Africa to the United States. New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1995.

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      A history of black music tracing the survival and ongoing significance of African musical characteristics, tendencies, mythological beliefs and assumptions, and interpretive strategies from Africa to the United States. Finds overlaps and continuities among a wide variety of African American musics, including jazz.

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    • Hersch, Charles. Subversive Sounds: Race and the Birth of Jazz in New Orleans. Chicago and London: University of Chicago Press, 2007.

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      Evaluates the emergence of jazz in New Orleans with special attention to race and class. Rejects the “melting pot” theory, and proposes instead that jazz crossed racial boundaries through its circulation across various performance venues with audiences of different races and classes. Draws on oral histories and other archival materials.

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    • Jackson, Travis A. “Jazz Performance as Ritual: The Blues Aesthetic and the African Diaspora.” In The African Diaspora: A Musical Perspective. Edited by Ingrid Monson, 23–82. New York: Routledge, 2000.

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      Explores jazz performance practice in terms of a “blues aesthetic” derived from and continually fed by African American culture and its musical practices. This aesthetic is learned through engagement with that culture and its music and operates as the central value system through which jazz is understood and valued.

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    • Monson, Ingrid. “The Problem with White Hipness: Race, Gender, and Cultural Conceptions in Jazz Historical Discourse.” Journal of the American Musicological Society 48 (1995): 396–422.

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      Examines white presumptions about the relationship of the aesthetic concept of “hipness” to African American cultural and behavioral norms. Addresses the interrelatedness of race and gender and the lingering effects of primitivism in the construction of the hip identity.

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    • Panish, Jon. The Color of Jazz: Race and Representation in Postwar American Culture. Jackson: University Press of Mississippi, 1997.

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      Less a study of jazz music than an exploration of the racial politics of its representation in literature and cinema from 1945 to 1965. Argues that whites valued jazz as a source of personal freedom, whereas blacks found in the music a source of group memory and communal values.

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    • Ramsey, Guthrie P., Jr. Race Music: Black Cultures from Bebop to Hip-Hop. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2003.

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      Situates black identity in meanings created in the private and communal realms of lived experience with music. Discusses a variety of postwar black musical styles, including jazz, and proposes that each is grounded in similar techniques and conceptual frameworks identified with African American musical traditions.

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    Vocal Jazz

    Jazz singers have routinely been marginalized in the literature of a music so strongly identified with instrumentalists and instrumental traditions. Some commentators have questioned whether or not singers actually qualify as jazz musicians, while others accept them into the fold but disagree over which singers count as “jazz” singers. The issue is further complicated by vocalists such as Nat Cole who cross over from jazz into the pop realm, as well as those whose styles are more clearly associated with pop, such as Frank Sinatra, who nevertheless have a significant influence on jazz musicians—vocalists and instrumentalists alike. Much of the literature on vocal jazz focuses on the small core of famous singers whose jazz credentials are unimpeachable and who have had the most influence on other singers: Louis Armstrong, Billie Holiday, Ella Fitzgerald, and Sarah Vaughan. There are countless other important singers, to be sure, many of whom are discussed in the essays on vocal jazz included in Kirchner 2000 and in the more comprehensive survey by Friedwald 1990 of the history of vocal jazz. One of the central practices of vocal jazz is the art of scat singing—vocal improvisation using nonsense syllables in lieu of words. In a study of Louis Armstrong and Betty Carter, Bauer 2001–2002 proposes a novel method for the analysis and evaluation of scat singing techniques. Huang and Huang 1994 and Folio and Weisberg 2005 illuminate different aspects of the influential phrasing of Billie Holiday; the former addresses the deceptively free rhythm of her vocal lines, while the latter examines her use of melodic paraphrase. Grant 1995 offers a critical reassessment of the value of “vocalese,” the widespread practice among jazz vocalists of setting composed lyrics note for note to jazz instrumentals, particularly improvised solos. Cartwright 2008 explores the musical borrowings and references to blues tradition in Ella Fitzgerald’s singing, and Bauer 1993 investigates singers’ expressive purposes in their treatment of lyrics.

    • Bauer, William R. “Billie Holiday and Betty Carter: Emotion and Style in the Jazz Vocal Line.” Annual Review of Jazz Studies 6 (1993): 99–152.

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      Compares performances by Holiday and Carter of “I Didn’t Know What Time It Was.” Argues that interpretations vary in terms of the singers’ stylistic proclivities and attributes but also in relation to what they wish to convey about the song’s lyrics.

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    • Bauer, William R. “Scat Singing: A Timbral and Phonetic Analysis.” Current Musicology 71–73 (2001–2002): 303–323.

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      Provides phonetic and musical transcriptions of scat solos by Louis Armstrong and Betty Carter to illustrate the means by which jazz vocalists use timbre both expressively and as a principle of organization in their improvised solos. Evaluates the effect of changing vowels and consonants on timbral expression.

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    • Cartwright, Katharine. “‘Guess These People Wonder What I’m Singing’: Quotation and Reference in Ella Fitzgerald’s ‘St. Louis Blues.’” In Ramblin’ on My Mind: New Perspectives on the Blues. Edited by David Evans. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 2008.

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      Identifies musical borrowings and references in recordings by Ella Fitzgerald of W. C. Handy’s “St. Louis Blues” and traces them to classic and folk blues traditions, jazz instrumental traditions—in particular the tenor saxophone—and the work of her peers and predecessors.

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    • Folio, Cynthia, and Robert W. Weisberg. “Billie Holiday’s Art of Paraphrase: A Study in Consistency.” In Interdisciplinary Studies in Musicology. Edited by Maciej Jabloński and Michael L. Klein, 247–275. Poznań, Poland: Rhytmos Poznań, 2005.

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      Compares the singer’s use of melodic paraphrase in three performances of “All of Me,” recorded in 1941, 1946, and 1954. Finds that despite significant differences in key, voice quality, rhythmic feel, tempo, and instrumentation, Holiday’s approach to melodic paraphrase remained remarkably consistent, especially with respect to timing and pitch.

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    • Friedwald, Will. Jazz Singing: America’s Great Voices from Bessie Smith to Bebop and Beyond. New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1990.

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      A survey of the great jazz singers since the 1920s based on a broadly inclusive definition of what constitutes jazz singing. Artists are presented in loose chronological order. Assumes some knowledge of jazz history, but the writing is easily accessible. Includes chapter on recommended recordings.

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    • Grant, Barry Keith. “Purple Passages or Fiestas in Blue? Notes Toward an Aesthetic of Vocalese.” In Representing Jazz. Edited by Krin Gabbard, 285–303. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 1995.

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      An effort to recuperate the often negative image of vocalese in jazz discourse. Provides a brief history of the genre and compares it with scat singing but evaluates it for its own properties and its aesthetic affinities with other cultural traditions—especially poetry and “phonography.”

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    • Huang, Hao, and Rachel V. Huang. “Billie Holiday and Tempo Rubato: Understanding Rhythmic Expressivity.” Annual Review of Jazz Studies 7 (1994): 181–199.

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      Explains Billie Holiday’s seemingly free vocal rhythm in terms of her use of “dual-track time”: her vocal line moves at its own rate, independent of the meter maintained by the rhythm section. This accounts for the rhythmic order perceived in her line despite its apparent rubato.

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    • Kirchner, Bill, ed. The Oxford Companion to Jazz. Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 2000.

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      Collection of sixty brief essays by leading jazz scholars on major jazz styles, historical periods, and significant jazz musicians. Essays on vocal jazz include “Jazz Singing: Between Blues and Bebop”; “Ella Fitzgerald, Sarah Vaughan, and Billie Holiday”; and “Jazz Singing since the 1940s.”

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    Women in Jazz

    Women have been involved in jazz as singers, instrumentalists, composers, and arrangers since the beginning of its history, but their contributions have been systematically marginalized and their experiences all but written out of existence in the jazz literature, save for a handful of major figures, mostly vocalists. Sherrie Tucker, who has been one of the central figures since the 1990s in advancing scholarly research on women jazz musicians, explains many of the reasons for their marginalization in her excellent introduction to the topic, “Women,” published in the New Grove Dictionary of Jazz (Tucker 2002). Dahl 1984 is representative of some of the early efforts to document the careers and experiences of women jazz musicians; it serves today as a useful reference source. Gourse 1995 and Enstice and Stockhouse 2004 provide source material in the form of interviews and profiles of contemporary jazzwomen—important work because so little has been done in the past to document their careers. Tucker 2000 also makes use of interviews in compiling the definitive history of all-women big bands in the 1940s and does more to theorize about the interactions of race, gender, and sexuality in the experiences and public perception of women jazz musicians. Similarly, Williams 2007 explores the interaction of class with race and gender in the feminist perceptions of several contemporary black women jazz musicians whom she interviewed. Rustin and Tucker 2008 broaden the scope to include gender dynamics in the jazz world in the first collection of essays on this topic. Fischlin and Heble 2004 include a few significant articles about women improvisers and women’s experience in jazz.

    • Dahl, Linda. Stormy Weather: The Music and Lives of a Century of Jazzwomen. New York: Pantheon, 1984.

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      A survey of women musicians in jazz from the 1890s through the 1980s. Includes profiles of vocalists, instrumentalists, and composers and also discusses the recording industry, business managers, critics, and audiences. Appendices include listings of additional jazzwomen not covered in the text and a substantial discography.

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    • Enstice, Wayne, and Janis Stockhouse. Jazzwomen: Conversations with Twenty-One Musicians. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2004.

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      A collection of interviews with women jazz musicians conducted by the authors. Focuses more on instrumentalists than vocalists. Each interview includes a short introduction to the artist and a brief discography.

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    • Fischlin, Daniel, and Ajay Heble, eds. The Other Side of Nowhere: Jazz, Improvisation, and Communities in Dialogue. Middletown, CT: Wesleyan University Press, 2004.

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      This collection of essays focused largely on free jazz or “experimental improvisational music” includes several fine pieces on the place and experience of women in jazz.

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    • Gourse, Leslie. Madame Jazz: Contemporary Women Instrumentalists. New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1995.

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      A chronicle of the status of women instrumentalists in American jazz of the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s. Includes profiles of dozens of musicians based on interviews with the author. Provides short biographical sketches of more than three hundred women instrumentalists active in the 1980s and 1990s in an appendix.

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    • Rustin, Nichole T., and Sherrie Tucker, eds. Big Ears: Listening for Gender in Jazz Studies. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2008.

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      An interdisciplinary collection of essays concerning the role of women in jazz and their histories, and offering a critical approach to gender issues in jazz studies. Investigates how gender dynamics have shaped the production, reception, and criticism of jazz in a variety of media, including film, literature, concerts, and recordings.

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    • Tucker, Sherrie. Swing Shift: “All-Girl” Bands of the 1940s. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2000.

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      A history of all-women big bands active before, during, and after World War II drawn from archival research and interviews with more than 120 surviving musicians. Investigates their working conditions and representation and explores how race, gender, and sexuality shaped their experiences and the perceptions of their audiences.

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    • Tucker, Sherrie. “Women.” In The New Grove Dictionary of Jazz. Vol. 3. Edited by Barry Kernfeld, 978–984. London: Macmillan, 2002.

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      An excellent overview of the history of women in jazz and analysis of the issues that have led to their marginalization on the jazz labor market, in the recording industry, and in jazz historiography. Also available at Grove Music Online.

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    • Williams, Linda F. “Black Women, Jazz, and Feminism.” In Black Women and Music. Edited by Eileen M. Hayes and Linda F. Williams, 119–133. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 2007.

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      Examines ways in which black women jazz musicians understand feminism. Based on ethnographic research, the author’s own experience, and black feminist writings and criticism. Proposes analysis of class in relation to experience of race and gender and considers generational differences among ethnographic subjects in weighing the significance of each.

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    Latin Jazz

    Latin jazz is a broad term that has come to designate a fusion between jazz and any music of the Caribbean or Latin America. Though jazz musicians have long made use of Afro-Cuban rhythms and played various forms of Latin jazz, the music remains a subgenre largely excluded from the jazz canon in the jazz historical literature. Washburne 2001–2002 provides an excellent introduction to the music and its history and offers an explanation for its marginalization. Roberts 1999 is one of the first histories of Latin jazz in America. It surveys the music’s history from its early influences on jazz in the late 19th century through the end of the 20th. Fernández 2006 and Leymarie 2002 also offer historical surveys, but they are concerned more specifically with documenting varieties of Cuban music and their diffusion to the United States and beyond. Leymarie 2002 is more comprehensive in scope, though many of its discussions of the music lack depth. Fernández 2006 presents a short overview of terminology and style history but includes profiles of eight prominent contemporary Cuban musicians. The great Latin jazz band led by the Cuban musicians Francisco “Machito” Grillo and Mario Bauzá is treated in detail in Austerlitz 2005. Washburne 1997 and Loza 2002 both employ music analysis, the former to demonstrate the presence of Afro-Cuban rhythmic elements in the early jazz repertoire of New Orleans, the latter to illustrate the use of Cuban son in the music of contemporary Latin jazz star Poncho Sánchez.

    • Austerlitz, Paul. Jazz Consciousness: Music, Race, and Humanity. Middletown, CT: Wesleyan University Press, 2005.

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      The third chapter in this investigation of a transnational “jazz consciousness” provides a comprehensive study of the Latin jazz band of Cuban musicians Francisco “Machito” Grillo and Mario Bauzá. Addresses their shared goal of producing a creolized style out of Cuban music and jazz.

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    • Fernández, Raúl A. From Afro-Cuban Rhythms to Latin Jazz. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2006.

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      A useful and accessible introduction to the varieties of Cuban dance music and its historical and cultural connections to other Caribbean musics, salsa, and Latin jazz. Develops the aesthetic concept of sabor, which is central to Cuban music. Includes biographical profiles of eight prominent Cuban musicians interviewed by the author.

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    • Leymarie, Isabelle. Cuban Fire: The Story of Salsa and Latin Jazz. London and New York: Continuum, 2002.

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      A history of popular music of Cuban origin from its roots in African and Spanish music to its spread across the Caribbean and the United States. Traces the emergence and development of specific genres decade by decade, discusses the major artists from the 1920s to the present. Includes musical examples. Translated from French (original publication 1997).

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    • Loza, Steven. “Poncho Sánchez, Latin Jazz and the Cuban Son: A Stylistic and Social Analysis.” In Situating Salsa: Global Markets and Local Meanings in Latin Popular Music. Edited by Lise Waxer, 201–215. New York: Routledge, 2002.

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      Provides a general account of the historical and stylistic aspects of the traditional Cuban son form, and then demonstrates through music analysis the use of this form by the famous Mexican American Latin jazz musician Poncho Sánchez. Discusses also the use of jazz materials in Latin jazz.

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    • Roberts, John Storm. Latin Jazz: The First of the Fusions, 1880s to Today. New York: Schirmer, 1999.

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      A history of Latin jazz for the general reader. Demonstrates the influence of Latin instrumental groups in the United States on the emergence of jazz and then chronicles the various forms of Latin jazz and the major figures associated with each from the 1910s through the end of the 20th century.

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    • Washburne, Christopher. “The Clave of Jazz: A Caribbean Contribution to the Rhythmic Foundation of an African-American Music.” Black Music Research Journal 171 (1997): 59–80.

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      Argues for the influence of Caribbean music on the formation of jazz in New Orleans in the late 19th century. Finds in the early jazz repertoire the existence of certain rhythmic cells associated with styles of Cuban music, including the son clave, cinquillo, and tresillo. Includes comparative musical analysis.

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    • Washburne, Christopher. “Latin Jazz: The Other Jazz.” Current Musicology 71–73 (2001–2002): 409–426.

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      Presents an overview of the history of Latin jazz. Explores reasons for its marginalization from the jazz canon, including the history of its labeling as a distinct subgenre, the effects of American nationalism and African American centrism in the jazz literature, and its ongoing relationship to dance in what has become a high-art tradition.

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    Global Jazz

    Most writing on jazz seldom acknowledges the important contributions of non-American jazz musicians, let alone the vibrant jazz scenes and traditions that have emerged worldwide since as early as the 1920s. There is nevertheless a growing literature that investigates jazz as a global phenomenon and explores the complex cultural and ideological questions it has raised in international contexts at significant historical moments. Several essays in Kirchner 2000 provide a useful overview of jazz in a number of international settings. Atkins 2003 offers a more scholarly survey of global jazz in an interdisciplinary collection of essays. France was one of the first countries outside the United States to develop a vibrant jazz scene, which is documented in Jackson 2003. Starr 1994 (first published in 1983) and Kater 1992 address the role of jazz in totalitarian political regimes; the former concerns jazz in Soviet Russia, the latter its fate in Nazi Germany. Atkins 2001, which focuses on jazz in Japan, and Heffley 2005, which addresses free-jazz in Europe, are both concerned with the problem of authenticity—specifically, how non-American jazz musicians develop a unique musical voice in an African American musical idiom. Finally, Harris 2000 offers some reflections on the implications of global jazz, especially as concerns issues of identity and aesthetics in relation to the central importance of African American culture and expressive practices for the music’s history.

    • Atkins, E. Taylor. Blue Nippon: Authenticating Jazz in Japan. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2001.

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      A history of Japanese jazz from the 1920s to the 1990s focusing particular attention on the issue of authenticity. Describes several “strategies of authentication” employed by Japanese jazz musicians. Draws on media archives, films, oral histories, and ethnographic fieldwork.

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    • Atkins, E. Taylor, ed. Jazz Planet. Jackson: University Press of Mississippi, 2003.

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      A collection of essays by scholars drawn from a variety of academic disciplines focusing on jazz created outside the United States. Endeavors to place American jazz in a broader context of global musical exchange. Addresses jazz traditions in East and South Asia, western Europe, Russia, Australia, Cuba, and Brazil.

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    • Harris, Jerome. “Jazz on the Global Stage.” In The African Diaspora: A Musical Perspective. Edited by Ingrid Monson, 103–134. New York: Routledge, 2000.

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      A meditation on the implications of the increasingly transnational character of jazz. Examines international contexts for the music’s distribution, pedagogy, criticism, institutional support, and its potential cross-cultural influences. Raises questions about identity and aesthetics entailed by the globalization of jazz.

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    • Heffley, Mike. Northern Sun, Southern Moon: Europe’s Reinvention of Jazz. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2005.

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      A study of post-1965 experimental improvised musics in Europe centered predominantly on the German free jazz scene. Investigates European free jazz musicians’ efforts to find their own distinctive musical voices and create an innovative jazz culture independent of African American models. Blends historical inquiry with ethnographic practice.

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    • Jackson, Jeffrey H. Making Jazz French: Music and Modern Life in Interwar Paris. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2003.

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      A social and cultural history of jazz in interwar Paris. Discusses both American and French musicians associated with the Paris jazz scene. Addresses economic and technological factors at work in the French entertainment industry, as well as critical debates over jazz concerning French culture and its relationship to modernism.

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    • Kater, Michael H. Different Drummers: Jazz in the Culture of Nazi Germany. Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 1992.

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      Traces jazz in Germany from its emergence in the Weimar Republic through its partially underground survival during the Third Reich and its aftermath in the postwar era. Blends archival research with oral and written testimonies from surviving participants in the German jazz scene of the period.

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    • Kirchner, Bill, ed. The Oxford Companion to Jazz. Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 2000.

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      Surveys of jazz in Europe, Brazil, Africa, Japan, Canada, and Australia are included in this collection of sixty brief essays by leading jazz scholars on major jazz styles, historical periods, and significant jazz musicians.

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    • Starr, S. Frederick. Red and Hot: The Fate of Jazz in the Soviet Union. 2d ed. New York: Limelight, 1994.

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      A history of jazz in Soviet Russia. Beginning with the Russian Revolution, it traces the rise and fall of jazz’s popularity in the country in relation to political events and official government approval or disavowal into the 1990s. Includes discussion of rock music in Russia, as well.

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    LAST MODIFIED: 06/29/2011

    DOI: 10.1093/OBO/9780199757824-0039

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