Extensions of the Blues

Mary Ellison, Author Calder Publications $29.95 (307p) ISBN 978-0-7145-3717-7
In six superficially connected and less than original essays, Ellison, who teaches at the University of Keele in Staffordshire, England, discourses on the blues, jazz, rock and soul. Much of the text reads more like a catalogue than a critical explication. Relationships between the blues and American literature are brought out in extracts from the writings of famous and lesser-known poets (Langston Hughes, Allen Ginsberg, etc.), playwrights (Ossie Davis, Philip Hayes Dean among them) and novelists (William Melvin Kelley, John Williams), but the book, though sympathetic and informative, is not sufficiently analytic to warrant reading even by jazz buffs. Dark, grainy photographs of performers are among the most poorly produced one has encountered in memory. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1989
Release date: 01/01/1989
Paperback - 307 pages - 978-0-7145-3846-4
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