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Dave Liebman is one of the leading forces in contemporary jazz. Prominently known for performing with Miles Davis and Elvin Jones, he has exerted considerable influence as a saxophonist, bandleader, composer, author, and educator. In What It Is: The Life of a Jazz Artist, friend, pianist, and noted jazz scholar Lewis Porter conducts a series of in-depth interviews with Liebman, who discusses his professional, personal, and musical relationships with notable musicians, as well as such personal matters as contracting polio as a child. Featuring rare photos from Liebman's personal collection, this fascinating and witty story will not only appeal to jazz fans and scholars but also to those readers interested in the story of how a young man followed his dream to become one of the leading jazz artists of our time.
Good Vibes is an autobiography that tracks jazz from the turbulent post-war years through the rise of bebop, traversing its changes through the eyes of one of its greatest practitioners. Gibbs's anecdotes reveal little-known attributes and quirks about legendary personalities such as Benny Goodman, Buddy Rich, Steve Allen, Frank Sinatra, Don Rickles, Billie Holiday, and many more. A foreword by Chubby Jackson, a discography, and an index round out this work. --From publisher's description.
Jazz Child: A Portrait of Sheila Jordan is the complete biography of the first female jazz vocalist to record on the prestigious Blue Note record label. In this book, biographer Ellen Johnson reveals the challenges Jordan confronted to become an influential recording artist and performer, working with many famous jazz luminaries of the era.
From the Minds of Jazz Musicians: Conversations with the Creative and Inspired celebrates contemporary jazz artists who have toiled, struggled and succeeded in finding their creative space. The volume was developed through transcribing and editing selected interviews with 35 jazz artists, conducted by the author between 2009 and 2012 in New York City, with a historical essay on each artist to provide context. The interviews feature musicians from a broad range of musical styles and experiences, ranging from Gerald Wilson, born in 1918, to Chris Potter, born in 1971. Topics range from biographical life histories to artists’ descriptions of mentor relationships, revealing the important life lessons they learned along the way. With the goal to discover the person behind the persona, the author elicits conversations that speak volumes on the creative process, mining the individualistic perspectives of seminal artists who witnessed history in the making. The interviews present the artists’ candid and direct opinions on music and how they have succeeded in pursuing their unique and creative lives.
This is the first comprehensive study of the music and life of Theodore 'Fats' Navarro. It provides biographical, discographical, and analytical information on the trumpeter and his recorded legacy, offering new perspectives on Navarro's role in the history and emergence of Bebop.
Life Lessons from the Horn is collection of compelling essays revealing saxophonist Sam Newsome’s unique insights as an artist, educator, and jazz musician of the 21st Century. Mr. Newsome, who teaches jazz studies at LIU Brooklyn, brings to each chapter, decades of experience of as an important figure on the New York jazz scene as well as his numerous years as educator in the classroom. Mr. Newsome teamed up with acclaimed jazz writer Howard Mandel to turn what he describes as "rough cuts" from his blog, into "book-worthy" set of reads. Jazz writer Kevin Whitehead describes Life Lessons from the Horn as a book "that’ll make you a better musician (and maybe even a better person)." If you are young musician serious about jazz, or if you're a seasoned professional looking for inspiration thoughts, this book has a little bit for everybody. "I wish that I had this book when I was much younger, as I’d probably be further along in my studies by now!" says Ethan Iverson, pianist and composer and writer of the blog Do the Math.
Jazz could not contain Fred Hersch. Hersch’s prodigious talent as a sideman—a pianist who played with the giants of the twentieth century in the autumn of their careers, including Art Farmer and Joe Henderson—blossomed further in the eighties and beyond into a compositional genius that defied the boundaries of bop, sweeping in elements of pop, classical, and folk to create a wholly new music. Good Things Happen Slowly is his memoir. It’s the story of the first openly gay, HIV-positive jazz player; a deep look into the cloistered jazz culture that made such a status both transgressive and groundbreaking; and a profound exploration of how Hersch’s two-month-long coma in 2007 led to his creating some of the finest, most direct, and most emotionally compelling music of his career. Remarkable, and at times lyrical, Good Things Happen Slowly is an evocation of the twilight of Post-Stonewall New York, and a powerfully brave narrative of illness, recovery, music, creativity, and the glorious reward of finally becoming oneself.

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