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Lost Chords : White Musicians and Their Contribution to Jazz, 1915-1945 - Richard M. Sudhalter

Lost Chords

White Musicians and Their Contribution to Jazz, 1915-1945

Paperback

Published: 29th November 2001
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Too many jazz fans and critics--and even some jazz musicians--still contend that white players have contributed little of substance to the music; that even, with every white musician removed from the canon, the history and nature of jazz would remain unchanged. Now, with Lost Chords, musician-historian Richard M. Sudhalter challenges this narrow view, with a book that pays definitive tribute to a generation of white jazz players, many unjustly forgotten--while never scanting the role of the great black pioneers.
Greeted enthusiastically by the jazz community upon its original publication, this monumental volume offers an exhaustively documented, vividly narrated history of white jazz contribution in the vital years 1915 to 1945. Beginning in New Orleans, Sudhalter takes the reader on a fascinating multicultural odyssey through the hot jazz gestation centers of Chicago and New York, Indiana and Texas, examining such bands such as the New Orleans Rhythm Kings, the Original Memphis Five, and the Casa Loma Orchestra. Readers will find luminous accounts of many key soloists, including Bix Beiderbecke, Benny Goodman, Jack Teagarden, Red Norvo, Bud Freeman, the Dorsey Brothers, Bunny Berigan, Pee Wee Russell, and Artie Shaw, among others. Sudhalter reinforces the reputations of these and many other major jazzmen, pleading their cases persuasively and eloquently, without ever descending to polemic. Along the way, he gives due credit to Louis Armstrong, Lester Young, Duke Ellington, Coleman Hawkins, and countless other major black figures.
Already hailed as a basic reference book on the subject--and now incorporating information that has come to light since its first publication--Lost Chords is a ground-breaking book that should significantly alter perceptions about jazz and its players, reminding readers of this great music's multicultural origins.

"[Lost Chords]--which includes profiles of a number of celebrated European-American jazzmen--Beidecker, Bunny Berigan, Benny Goodman and Artie Shaw, to name a few--is at its most intriguing when examining such lesser known figures as the sweetly tragic New Orleans cornetist Emmett Hardy, the multitalented bandleader Adrian Rollins and the irascible braggart Nick LaRocca.... There's much to be learned from his scholarly narrative."--Publishers Weekly "The book is full of thoughtful insights into unjustly neglected musicians such as Stew Pletcher, Clarence Hutchenrider, Jack Benny and George Van Eps....The author's identification with the music is so great that a deep nostalgic sadness pervades the end of nearly every chapter, as if in acknowledgment that something had been lost that could never again be recovered."--Allegro "[Lost Chords]--which includes profiles of a number of celebrated European-American jazzmen--Beidecker, Bunny Berigan, Benny Goodman and Artie Shaw, to name a few--is at its most intriguing when examining such lesser known figures as the sweetly tragic New Orleans cornetist Emmett Hardy, the multitalented bandleader Adrian Rollins and the irascible braggart Nick LaRocca.... There's much to be learned from his scholarly narrative."--Publishers Weekly "Sudhalter's monumental contribution to the complex story of American music is without precedent. Let no one search Lost Chords for revisionist history: this history-within-history has never been written before--certainly not with such breadth, depth, adn musicianly insight. And let no one hunt here for polemics: there are none. What is here is an extraordinary summing-up of three decades of music-making by jazzmen (poet Carl Sandburg's 1920 addition to the American language), who listened to and jammed with other 'cats of any color' (to appropriate Louis Armstrong's collegial, and typically generous, salute to fellow musicians), and who then passed along to all within earshot of nightly coast-to-coast remote-control broadcasts and omnipresent recording what they had learned and nourished."--James T. Maher "Far from offended...deep-dyed fans...surely will be overjoyed by the range, depth, and readability--Sudhalter is no academic drudge, but an ace writer--of his coverage.... No jazz collection--no music collection--should be without it."--Booklist "A meticulously researched volume on an underexamined field of music history.... This will be an indispensable volume for musicians and music historians, "--Kirkus Reviews "[Sudhalter's] enthusiasm for the subject carries across and the book earns the biggest compliment that any book about music can earn: it makes you want to hear again the songs you know and to seek out those you do not. This is no small achievement."--Marc A. Mamigonian, The Boston Book Review "A serious work of musical scholarship, straightforward and free of rancor.... No one who reads it will ever again be able to take seriously the argument that all white jazz is derivative and second-rate.... If you care about American music, you must read it."--Baltimore Sun "Well worth reading, a meticulously researched and lovingly history of some great players that have been neglected elsewhere."--Cover magazine "When he writes about music, Sudhalter is often unimprovable and unsurpassable."--Jon Newlin, The Times-Picayune "Massive, beautifully written and supremely readable.... Combines useful scholarship, narrative and technical analysis."--an Francisco Examiner & Chronicle "Lost Chords is loaded with analysis and interpretation. That's why we hot-jazz nuts think everyone should read it."--The Star Democrat "A mountainous work that restores to history the considerable influence of white musicians on the development of jazz."--New York Times Book Review

ISBN: 9780195148381
ISBN-10: 019514838X
Audience: General
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 912
Published: 29th November 2001
Publisher: Oxford University Press Inc
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 23.0 x 15.0  x 5.08
Weight (kg): 1.18
Edition Type: New edition