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Jazz Cosmopolitanism in Accra: Five Musical Years in Ghana

3.91  ·  Rating Details ·  22 Ratings  ·  4 Reviews
In this remarkable book, Steven Feld, pioneer of the anthropology of sound, listens to the vernacular cosmopolitanism of jazz players in Ghana. Some have traveled widely, played with American jazz greats, and blended the innovations of John Coltrane with local instruments and worldviews. Combining memoir, biography, ethnography, and history, Feld conveys a diasporic intima ...more
Paperback, 328 pages
Published March 9th 2012 by Duke University Press Books (first published January 1st 2012)
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Aug 04, 2012 Alex rated it it was amazing
I enjoyed this book on many levels. Hard to summerize, it has great stories about people, history and purpose. It's purpose is broad and specific at the same time. Trying to come to grips with what constitutes cosmopolitanism, jazz, art, and culture, Feld uses specific stories and personal experience to try and answer the questions.
Having seen the films and heard the CDs (I'm playing on one of them) I felt enlightened by many of the back stories and historical narratives. After reading the book
Phil Babcock
Mar 26, 2013 Phil Babcock rated it it was amazing
Feld's approach to researching and writing this book provides a template that all ethnomusicologists should strive to emulate. Resulting from 5 years of collaborative multimedia projects in Ghana, Feld does a wonderful job of letting his collaborators tell their own stories and talk about their own cosmopolitanism in their own words. I was immensely impressed by this book.
Jul 26, 2016 Kariann rated it liked it
This book is more of a memoir than an academic title, and I wish I had known that before before diving in. The good part of this is that it made for a quick read. The bad is that I came away without much of a sense of what his main points were. It's an experimental book, but it read like Feld just dropped into a discussion that's been happening in global jazz scholarship for a long time without really engaging with it. And that made me sad.
Aug 21, 2012 Sara-Maria rated it liked it
a story much better told through his triology of films, i think:

"accra trane station"

"african hallelujah chours"

"a por por funeral for ashirifie"
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