Dancing in Your Head: Jazz, Blues, Rock, and Beyond

Gene Santoro, Author Oxford University Press, USA $30 (320p) ISBN 978-0-19-507887-9
Santoro, music columnist for the Nation , is an avid generalist who writes with emotion, enthusiasm and distinct likes and dislikes. Here, he offers 65 articles and record and book reviews written between 1986 and 1992 for the Nation , the Village Voice , Downbeat and other publications. He opens with an appreciation of bluesman Robert Johnson's creative use of the constraints imposed by 78rpm recording, and he closes with raves for saxophonist John Zorn's ``sonic assault'' on traditional musical boundaries and for Steve Coleman, whose musical evolution he traces. Santoro also covers gospel, James Brown, country (which, he writes, is based on ``commercially generated nostalgia''), Jeff Beck, Gunther Schuller, the Grateful Dead, Les Paul, Charlie Mingus, Henry Threadgill and many others. His longer pieces, like those on Miles Davis and the Neville Brothers, are generally more satisfying. Santoro is a fast-paced reporter and his shorter pieces don't always reach full stride. (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 02/28/1994
Release date: 03/01/1994
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