Dan Morgenstern, Author, Sheldon Meyer, Editor , edited by Sheldon Meyer. Pantheon $35 (736p) ISBN 978-0-375-42072-6

Former editor of Metronome , Jazz and Downbeat , Morgenstern has been one of jazz's most passionate observers and chroniclers, particularly during its last major flowerings in the '60s and '70s. Longtime Oxford University Press editor Meyer gathers nearly half a century of Morgenstern's profiles, liner notes, record and show reviews and other musings in this definitive compilation. Morgenstern reminisces about his introduction to jazz in a brief opening memoir, then segues into lengthy sections on his greatest heroes, Louis Armstrong and Duke Ellington. Liner notes introduce records by everyone from Ma Rainey to Joe Lovano; essays include a survey of the history of recorded jazz and considerations of jazz's relationship to theater, dance, film and television. Morgenstern has known most of the musicians he discusses, and he depicts them all with insight and affection, from his rollicking account of the career of lovable "Hot Lips" Page to his sensitive portraits of self-effacing Pee Wee Russell and eccentric Lester Young. Often he lets the artists speak for themselves, as when Bill Evans articulates his thoughts on the "intellectual" qualities of his music. Now the director of the Institute of Jazz Studies at Rutgers University, Morgenstern is generous in his assessments of performers and performances, and his exuberant characterizations make this monumental volume a stimulating guide to jazz in the second half of the 20th century. (Nov. 16)

Reviewed on: 10/18/2004
Release date: 11/01/2004
Genre: Nonfiction
Open Ebook - 631 pages - 978-0-307-48760-5
Show other formats
Discover what to read next