Goin' to Kansas City

Nathan W. Pearson, Author University of Illinois Press $29.95 (252p) ISBN 978-0-252-01336-2
Count Basie, Buck Clayton, Eddie Durham, Jesse Stone, Mary Lou Williams and other musicians, whose reminiscences are gathered here by ethnomusicologist Pearson, explain why Kansas City was such an important center of jazz in the 1920s and 1930s. They recall the Blue Devils, the orchestras of Bennie Moten, Basie and Jay McShann, the development of a distinctive Kansas City style from ragtime and New Orleans jazz, the ambience during the days when Tom Pendergast's corrupt political machine ran the town and the rise of innovators Buster Smith, Lester Young and Charlie Parker. Also included are enjoyable sections on such lesser-known groups as George E. Lee's Singing Novelty Orchestra and Thamon Hayes's Kansas City Rockets. (January)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1988
Release date: 01/01/1988
Paperback - 320 pages - 978-0-252-06438-8
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