Scholars of music, ethnomusicology, American studies, literature, anthropology, and cultural studies approach the question of gender in jazz from multiple perspectives. One contributor scrutinizes the tendency of jazz historiography to treat singing as subordinate to the predominantly male domain of instrumental music, while another reflects on her doubly inappropriate position as a female trumpet player and a white jazz musician and scholar. Other essays explore the composer George Russell’s Lydian Chromatic Concept as a critique of mid-twentieth-century discourses of embodiment, madness, and black masculinity; performances of “female hysteria” by Les Diaboliques, a feminist improvising trio; and the BBC radio broadcasts of Ivy Benson and Her Ladies’ Dance Orchestra during the Second World War. By incorporating gender analysis into jazz studies, Big Ears transforms ideas of who counts as a subject of study and even of what counts as jazz.
Contributors: Christina Baade, Jayna Brown, Farah Jasmine Griffin, Monica Hairston, Kristin McGee, Tracy McMullen, Ingrid Monson, Lara Pellegrinelli, Eric Porter, Nichole T. Rustin, Ursel Schlicht, Julie Dawn Smith, Jeffrey Taylor, Sherrie Tucker, João H. Costa Vargas
Nichole T. Rustin is completing a book titled Jazz Men: Race, Masculine Difference, and the Emotions in 1950s America.
Sherrie Tucker is Associate Professor of American Studies at the University of Kansas. She is the author of Swing Shift: “All-Girl” Bands of the 1940s, also published by Duke University Press.
Touching upon Mingus's many innovations as a jazzman, I Know What I Know explores his advancement of the art of bass playing; his assimilations of Ellington and Monk with ideas leaning toward free jazz; his experiments with ensemble dynamics, instrumentation, and extended form; and his working relationships with partners such as Jaki Byard, Eric Dolphy, Jimmy Knepper, and Dannie Richmond. The book provides a broad, informative overview of Mingus's work without veering into technical musical terminology. Readers without an extensive background in music will thus understand and appreciate the analyses provided, and be able to use them to enhance the experience of listening to the brilliant work of this legendary jazz great.
Do you have a hard time differentiating between hard bop, bebop, and the blues? Need to Know?Jazz puts jazz in its musical and historical context, and gets you started with stories of famous artists and the best recordings to listen to.
From the beginnings of jazz to the years of swing and satchmo, Bob Blumenthal introduces jazz legends such as Louis Armstrong and Duke Ellington, and looks at how they transformed the art form into the era of bebop, with new names such as Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie and Thelonious Monk.
The broad variety of styles within jazz, from swing and ragtime to big bands and blues is complemented with listening suggestions, making this the ideal introductory guide for anyone eager to learn more about this unique art form.