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The Story of Jazz
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The Story of Jazz

3.69 of 5 stars 3.69  ·  rating details  ·  39 ratings  ·  1 review
Beginning with the African musical heritage and its fusion with European forms in the New World, Marshall Stearns's history of jazz guides the reader through work songs, spirituls, ragtime, and the blues, to the birth of jazz in New Orleans and its adoption by St Louis, Chicago, Kansas City, and New York. From swing and bop to the early days of rock, this lively book intro ...more
Published September 15th 1970 by Oxford University Press, USA (first published 1956)
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I found it really interesting, not only because I'm interested in jazz, but also because the book was originally published in 1956. So it doesn't really have a lot of distance from the golden age of jazz. And rock 'n' roll was so new, it gets a passing mention as "rock-and-roll" (quotation marks and all). It's interesting to read about jazz's relationship with the world from that perspective. Anyway, I really loved this quote from the book -- I actually shivered when I read it.

"In a society of i
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“In a society of increasingly mass-produced, assembly-line entertainment, where every individual is treated like an empty pitcher to be filled from above, jazz retains something of the spirit of the handicrafts of yesteryear. The print of the human spirit warms it. Deep down, jazz expresses the enforced & compassionate attitudes of a minority group and may well appeal to us because we all have blue moods and, in a fundamental sense, none of us is wholly free.” 2 likes
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