Keeping Time

Keeping Time : Readings in Jazz History

3.61 (34 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

Drawing from contemporary journalism, reviews, program notes, memoirs, interviews, and other sources, Keeping Time lets you experience, first hand, the controversies and critical issues that have accompanied jazz from its very birth. Edited by Robert Walser, these sixty-two thought provoking pieces offer a wealth of insight into jazz. Some of the giants of jazz speak to us here, including Jelly Roll Morton, Billie Holiday, Charles Mingus and Wynton Marsalis. And there are pieces by writers such as Langston Hughes, Norman Mailer, and Ralph Ellison, and by critics such as Leonard Feather and Gunther Schuller. Readers will find Louis Armstrong on what makes swing, Dizzy Gillespie on bebop, and Miles Davis on jazz-rock fusion. Equally important, Walser has selected writings that capture the passionate reactions of people who have loved, hated, supported, and argued about jazz. One can read, for instance, a dismissive article written in 1918 that relegates jazz to the "servant's hall of music" along with "the clatter of the clogs, the click of Slavic heels." Or a debate between Wynton Marsalis and Herbie Hancock over the merits of free jazz and electric instruments.Or Duke Ellington's claim that jazz is neither highbrow nor lowbrow, but "goes back to something just about as old-and as natural-as the circulation of the blood." In the end, the focus here remains on how the music works and why people have cared about it. Filled with passionately felt, insightful writing, Keeping Time will increase one's historical awareness of jazz even as it provokes lively discussion among jazz aficionados, whether in clubs, concert halls or classrooms.show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 464 pages
  • 154 x 234 x 22mm | 639.56g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 9 halftones, 13 line drawings
  • 0195091736
  • 9780195091731

Review quote

"represents on paper the kaleidoscope richness of jazz history" July 1999 "elegant and well-crafted peices" Jazzwise, july 1999 "challenging collection of writings" Jazzwise, July 1999show more

About Robert Walser

Robert Walser is Associate Professor and Chair of Musicology at the University of California, Los Angeles. The author of Running with the Devil: Power, Gender, and Madness in Heavy Metal Music, and editor of American Music, he lives in Los Angeles.show more

Rating details

34 ratings
3.61 out of 5 stars
5 12% (4)
4 47% (16)
3 32% (11)
2 9% (3)
1 0% (0)
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