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Jazz-related books of 2016

Jan 2nd, 2017 | By

W. Royal Stokes, JJA Lifetime Achievement in Jazz Journalism honoree (among other distinctions)

W. Royal Stokes has posted his annual roundup of music-and-culture-related books he received from publishers in 2016. He has annotated each of  150 titles with notes from their press releases and his own mini-reviews. His comments on books dealing specifically with jazz are excerpted below.

If you’d … [read more]

Bob Dylan in photos, bios and monographs

Jul 23rd, 2015 | By
His lyrics, initially inspired by Woody Guthrie, Robert Johnson and Hank Williams and defying the conventions of pop music, have incorporated political, social, philosophical and literary themes, in the process personalizing musical genres and acquiring an immense listenership, not just in the counterculture, as in the beginning of his career, but in the wider public. He is indeed a superstar and an American artistic icon.

The Jazz Journalists Association: A 25-Year Retrospective

Jun 11th, 2013 | By

Over the course of 29 years, the Jazz Journalists Association has developed from being a loose coalition of like-minded professional writers, photographers and broadcasters to a 501 (c) (3) non-profit with global outreach through its online programs and community-based initiatives. W. Royal Stokes, a founding member of the JJA, detailed the JJA’s history in 2013. 

The seeds of the Jazz … [read more]

Paul Blair, 1942 – 2011

Dec 15th, 2011 | By

My friendship with Paul Blair, who died on December 6, began in the early 1980s when we were both living and working in the Washington, D.C., area. Paul was a broadcaster with the Voice of America (VOA), in which capacity he taped hundreds of interviews of jazz, blues, and pop musicians, catching them between sets at clubs or in their hotel … [read more]

Nat Hentoff’s At the Jazz Band Ball: A Review

Sep 14th, 2010 | By

At the Jazz Band Ball: Sixty Years on the Jazz Scene
By Nat Hentoff
(Foreword by Lewis Porter)
University of California Press, 2010, 246 pp., $27.50 hardcover

Nat Hentoff has two passions, jazz and the U.S. Constitution. That these are not disparate interests he clarifies by quoting Max Roach: “What we do musically as we tell our stories is based … [read more]

Jazz Notes: Interviews Across the Generations

May 17th, 2010 | By

Jazz Notes: Interviews across the Generations
By Sanford Josephson
Praeger, Santa Barbara, CA, 2009;
207 pp.; $49.95 hardcover

This is a collection of profiles unlike any I have encountered in that it both updates interviews done three decades ago and presents interviewees from the perspectives of musical associates or admirers. The profiles originally appeared between 1978 and 1983 in such … [read more]