30 December 2008

List: Starting A Jazz Library

When I started working on my undergraduate thesis in college, I began building my library of jazz reading. As a service to any budding jazz scholars, below are the essential readings any serious jazz scholar should take a look at. This list is by no means exhaustive; think of it more as a starting-off point than a definitive list.

Interviews, Oral Histories, and Primary Sources
  1. Wayne Enstice and Paul Rubin, Jazz Spoken Here: Conversations With Twenty-Two Musicians
  2. Robert Gottlieb, Reading Jazz: A Gathering of Autobiography, Reportage, and Criticism from 1919 to Now
  3. Nat Hentoff and Nat Shapiro, Hear Me Talkin' to Ya: The Story of Jazz As Told by the Men Who Made It
  4. Len Lyons, The Great Jazz Pianists: Speaking Of Their Lives And Music
  5. Ben Sidran, Talking Jazz
  6. Art Taylor, Notes and Tones: Musician-to-Musician Interviews
  7. Robert Walser, Keeping Time: Readings in Jazz History
  1. James Lincoln Collier: Louis Armstrong: An American Genius
  2. John Edward Hasse, Beyond Category: The Life And Genius Of Duke Ellington
  3. Ben Ratliff, Coltrane: The Story of a Sound
  4. A.B. Spellman, Four Lives in the Bebop Business
  5. John Szwed, So What: The Life of Miles Davis
  1. Count Basie, Good Morning Blues: The Autobiography of Count Basie
  2. Sidney Bechet, Treat It Gentle: An Autobiography
  3. Miles Davis, Miles
  4. Duke Ellington, Music Is My Mistress
  5. Dizzy Gillespie, To Be or Not to Bop: Memoirs of Dizzy Gillespie
  6. Charles Mingus, Beneath the Underdog: His World as Composed by Mingus
  7. Horace Silver, Let's Get to the Nitty Gritty: The Autobiography of Horace Silver
Surveys of Jazz History
  1. James Lincoln Collier, Jazz: The American Theme Song
  2. Ted Gioia, The History of Jazz
  3. Burton Peretti, Jazz in American Culture
  4. Gunther Schuller, Early Jazz: Its Roots and Musical Development and The Swing Era: The Development of Jazz, 1930-1945
Book-Length Studies
  1. Iain Anderson, This Is Our Music: Free Jazz, the Sixties, and American Culture
  2. Scott DeVeaux, The Birth of Bebop: A Social and Musical History
  3. John Gennari, Blowin' Hot and Cool: Jazz and Its Critics
  4. Ted Gioia, West Coast Jazz: Modern Jazz in California, 1945-1960
  5. LeRoi Jones/Amiri Baraka, Blues People: Negro Music in White America
  6. Frank Kofsky, John Coltrane and the Jazz Revolution of the 1960's
  7. George Lewis, A Power Stronger Than Itself: The AACM and American Experimental Music
  8. Graham Lock, Blutopia: Visions of the Future and Revisions of the Past in the Work of Sun Ra, Duke Ellington, and Anthony Braxton
  9. Eric Porter, What Is This Thing Called Jazz? African American Musicians as Artists, Critics, and Activists
  10. David Rosenthal, Hard Bop: Jazz and Black Music 1955-1965
  11. Scott Saul, Freedom Is, Freedom Ain't: Jazz and the Making of the Sixties
  12. Gabriel Solis, Monk's Music: Thelonious Monk and Jazz History in the Making
  13. Penny Von Eschen, Satchmo Blows Up the World: Jazz Ambassadors Play the Cold War
Edited Critical Collections
  1. Whitney Balliet, Collected Works : A Journal of Jazz 1954-2000
  2. Amiri Baraka, Black Music
  3. Stanley Crouch, Considering Genius: Writings on Jazz
  4. Ralph Ellison, Living with Music: Ralph Ellison's Jazz Writings
  5. Gary Giddins, Visions of Jazz: The First Century
  6. Nat Hentoff, The Jazz Life
  7. Howard Mandel, Future Jazz
  8. Martin Williams, The Jazz Tradition
Miscellaneous Edited Collections
  1. Krin Gabbard, Jazz Among the Discourses
  2. Robert O'Meally, The Jazz Cadence of American Culture
  3. Robert O'Meally, Uptown Conversation: The New Jazz Studies

No comments: