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The History of Jazz by Ted Gioia
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Nov 16, 07


I particularly enjoyed the first few chapters of this book. It may be that they are better for the lack of source material from the time period. The author feels free to visualize early jazz history as we vaguely understand it to have occurred. He writes a nuanced history that shies from cliche historical labels. This book may not be for the uninitiated in the jazz world, and even for the initiated it bogs down in latter chapters in details, and lists of album titles. For a book its size, it manages to do justice fairly well to most of the styles that eventually fall under the umbrella of jazz music.
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