Jazz e-books

April 5, 2015

With more and more of us turning to e-books, this is a good time to note that some of my now out-of-print books are available in this format. They include:

Singing Jazz: the Singers and Their Styles by Bruce Crowther & Mike Pinfold

This book explores the lives, words, and music of vocalists past and present to portray the diverse and stimulating world of the jazz singer. Singing Jazz examines the ups and downs of a tough profession: the learning process, on the road and in school; the problems of building a repertoire, finding work, traveling, performing in often difficult circumstances; and the struggle for recognition in the world of popular music, where talent and dedication are sometimes not enough.sjz book

Comments on this book (print edition):

“The text is enriched with extensive anecdotal material and an encyclopedic-styled biographical section.” – Don Heckman – Los Angeles Times

“. . . interviewed especially for Singing Jazz – some of today’s best performers illustrate the contemporary view of jazz singing. Kitty Margolis, Mark Murphy, Helen Merrill, Mark Porter, Christine Tyrrell, and many others discuss the influences and experiences that have shaped their singing careers, and share insights on how their art is still evolving today.” – goodreads.com

“In addition to biographies of jazz singers of yesterday and today, this is a how-to book for singers.” – JazzStandards.com

“(The world) where the voice itself is an instrument, and the art of improvisation and self-expression reigns–is explored in this illuminating book.” – Indigo.ca

“The scintillating story of a vibrant and exciting art form. Illuminating profiles of legendary artists, including Billie Holiday, Ella Fitgerald, Sarah Vaughan, Carmen McRae, Louis Armstrong, and many more.” – JazzScript.co.uk

 

This e-book is available from Amazon (USA) or Amazon (UK), as are books in the popular Life & Times series:

 

Gene Krupa: His Life & Times by Bruce Crowther

With his handsome, overwrought, gesticulating presence both on-stage and on-screen, Gene Krupa (1909-1973) changed beyond recognition the role of the jazz drummer and provided a lasting visual image of the Swing Era. gk bookDespite his spectacular drumming with the Benny Goodman band, the drummer’s sensationalized, phony drug bust in California in the 1940s secured his reputation, in the public’s mind, as a drug addict. In fact, underneath his glamorous stage persona, he was a quiet, reflective, and deeply religious man, as well as a dedicated, professional musician. Bruce Crowther sheds new light on Krupa’s Polish immigrant background in Chicago, the places he lived and worked, and the musicians he learned from and played with. In exploring that background, the book evokes the inspiration Krupa provided for his own and succeeding generations of drummers.

 

Louis Armstrong: His Life & Times by Mike Pinfold

The most famous jazz trumpeter of all time, Louis Armstrong (1901-1971) will also be remembered as a band leader, film star, comedian, and the first jazz personality to become an international celebrity. Born in New Orleans, he played in marching bands and on Mississippi riverboats but became famous with the Chicago band of ‛King’ Oliver. la bookWith his extraordinary instrumental range, gift for variations, distinctive ‛scat’ vocals and extroverted performance style, he succeeded in bringing jazz to audiences who had never before cared for the music. Mike Pinfold sheds new light on Armstrong’s New Orleans background and the unparalleled position he holds in American cultural history.

 

 

Bunk Johnson: His Life & Times by Christopher Hillman

Of all the figures to be associated with the revival of early New Orleans jazz in the 1940s, Bunk Johnson (1889-1949) was the most influential and the most controversial. A survivor of the pioneering days of jazz, and hailed in his last years as a ‛grand old man’, Bunk became the symbol of a primitive and simple style of music, with which his own strongly held views were at odds.bunk chris Jazz critics and enthusiasts divided into those who hailed him as a sage, and those who dismissed him entirely. Christopher Hillman has sifted through the known facts about Bunk’s life, and a mass of documentary evidence, to produce this new account of Johnson’s career. The story which emerges, about the music and about Bunk’s own complicated personality, is a fascinating examination of one of the legends of jazz history.

(Interested in early jazz? Then visit Christopher Hillman’s website.)

 


Billie Holiday: Her Life & Times by John White

Billie Holiday (1915-1959) was one of the greatest artists in the history of jazz, a legend in her own lifetime and, nearly thirty years after her untimely death, a persistent and profound influence on popular music. Frank Sinatra said of her in 1958, “With few exceptions, every major pop singer in the U.S. during her generation has been touched in some way by her genius. It is Billie Holiday . . . who was and still remains the greatest single musical influence on me.” billi book jwLong before her death, she had achieved notoriety as a drug addict as well as a performer. Although the motion picture Lady Sings the Blues (1972), starring Diana Ross, presented a simplified, often distorted image of her life, it also aroused the continuing interest of a younger generation in her peerless recordings. This book examines her tumultuous life and career, and offers a new perspective on Holiday’s legend by focusing on the early years in Baltimore and her breakthrough role as the first black woman to sing with an all-white band in a segregated society.

 

Also available as e-books are Bruce Crowther’s:

– stage play, The Colors Of Your Life

– the 1989 Edgar-nominated, Film Noir: Reflections In A Dark Mirror

– five new (2012-2014) crime novels, Dead Man Running, Dark Echoes, Penitence, Harlem Nocturne, All Cut Up

– and look out for the forthcoming sequel to Harlem Nocturne. Set four years later, Harlem Madness again features Black private detective Daniel Leland, this time pitting his wits against gangsters, Black and White, in the days and nights surrounding the 1943 Harlem riots.

To buy e-books of any and all of these titles go to Amazon (USA) or Amazon (UK).

 

Comments

No Comments Yet.

Got something to say?





Looking For Something Specific?

Interested in a Specific Category?