Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “To Be or Not to Bop” as Want to Read:
To Be or Not to Bop
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

To Be or Not to Bop

4.24  ·  Rating Details ·  106 Ratings  ·  9 Reviews
Gift notes to flyleaf and very light shelfwear to jacket, tight and unmarked.
Published July 1st 1979 by Doubleday (first published 1979)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about To Be or Not to Bop, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about To Be or Not to Bop

Please Kill Me by Legs McNeilChronicles, Vol. 1 by Bob DylanLove Is a Mix Tape by Rob SheffieldOur Band Could Be Your Life by Michael AzerradJust Kids by Patti Smith
Best Non Fiction About Music
267th out of 914 books — 853 voters
Life is a Circus Run by a Platypus by Allison HawnGo the Fuck to Sleep by Adam MansbachAll My Friends Are Dead by Avery MonsenAnother Bullshit Night in Suck City by Nick FlynnF U, Penguin by Matthew Gasteier
Books that just have cool titles
288th out of 326 books — 111 voters

More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Andrew Kopp
Mar 28, 2013 Andrew Kopp rated it really liked it
This is a biography and autobiography in one. Stories are told by Dizzy and then retold from other famous jazz musicians points of view. It is wonderful to see how the same event is remembered differently! So this book is not just a one character biography. Anyone who studies jazz history must read this. To hear from the mouths of so many influential people is a cornucopia of insight.
Feb 09, 2008 Charles rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: all jazz enthusiasts
Regarded as one of the best jazz autobiographies.
Bob Woodley
Sep 26, 2015 Bob Woodley rated it liked it
This book needed an editor! Way too long.

But, many nuggets scattered here and there. He actually talks a little about the music theory (unlike Miles Davis' autobiography).

And he was a tough guy! He used his knife on several occasions to defend himself against white racists. And was clever and outspoken when confronting white power.

Always a goof ball, making inappropriate jokes, dancing like a nut on stage, falling off the stage on occasion.

He was a musician who along with Charlie Parker created
Gerry Baker
Feb 01, 2013 Gerry Baker rated it really liked it
Occasionally repetitive but very interesting biography with some really technical musical aspects. My favourite aspect of the book was the racism Dizzy and his band were subjected to throughout their heyday. Worth a read for any trumpet player or jazz fan.
May 12, 2015 MCBod rated it really liked it
Less educational about the jazz movement in general than Miles' book. But it did make me love the man, Dizzy. What a talented, generous and giving individual
Jul 14, 2012 Jim rated it it was amazing
One of my favorite all-time autobiographies. Dizzy has more good stories than there are musical notes in "Salt Peanuts".
Shaka Jamal
Shaka Jamal rated it liked it
Jan 28, 2012
Timothy rated it really liked it
Dec 02, 2015
rwasn rated it liked it
May 01, 2011
Craig Mcgorry
Craig Mcgorry rated it it was amazing
Aug 12, 2016
Joe rated it it was amazing
Jun 14, 2014
Jake Ferguson
Jake Ferguson rated it liked it
Dec 14, 2013
Berk T.
Berk T. rated it liked it
Apr 07, 2013
Tom rated it liked it
Oct 28, 2010
Stefano rated it liked it
Jan 20, 2016
Martin rated it it was amazing
Nov 12, 2011
Klaus Lupuss
Klaus Lupuss rated it it was amazing
Mar 09, 2016
Altonmann rated it really liked it
Jun 03, 2007
Sander Thijsen
Sander Thijsen rated it liked it
Nov 10, 2012
Ted rated it really liked it
May 07, 2013
Augustapalmer rated it really liked it
Nov 01, 2012
Daniel Saenz
Daniel Saenz rated it it was amazing
Apr 10, 2010
Dave Gregorio
Dave Gregorio rated it really liked it
Jul 09, 2014
Ignasi Boix
Ignasi Boix rated it really liked it
Feb 04, 2014
Jim rated it it was amazing
Sep 11, 2015
Fantomas Allain
Fantomas Allain rated it really liked it
Nov 11, 2013
Kevin Caulfield
Kevin Caulfield rated it it was amazing
Jan 20, 2010
Rima Regas
Rima Regas rated it it was amazing
Sep 30, 2014
Eric Pulsifer
Eric Pulsifer rated it really liked it
May 07, 2013
Yu-Shin Wen
Yu-Shin Wen rated it really liked it
Jan 09, 2016
« previous 1 3 4 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Hear Me Talkin' To Ya
  • Straight Life: The Story Of Art Pepper
  • Black Music
  • Bill Evans: How My Heart Sings
  • John Coltrane: His Life and Music
  • Improvisation: Its Nature And Practice In Music
  • Bird Lives!: The High Life & Hard Times of Charlie (Yardbird) Parker
  • As serious as your life: John Coltrane and beyond
  • Myself When I Am Real: The Life and Music of Charles Mingus
  • Treat It Gentle: An Autobiography
  • Stomping The Blues
  • Visions of Jazz: The First Century
  • Satchmo Blows Up the World: Jazz Ambassadors Play the Cold War
  • The Music of Black Americans: A History
  • Undercurrents: The Hidden Wiring of Modern Music
  • As Though I Had Wings: The Lost Memoir
  • Thelonious Monk: The Life and Times of an American Original
  • Louis Armstrong: An Extravagant Life

Share This Book