Larry Kart

Larry Kart's jazz book

476 posts in this topic

Yes.

It's the real deal.

It looks great and has so much stuff that I haven't seen before (the Chicago Tribune material). I'm really liking the organizational aspect - it's not just a bunch of essays, there's the grouping that helps create some meaning. I also like the fact that subjects are revisited.

I think this will be a book that will really have some influence (at least I hope it will). It's not just parrotting back the liner note conventional wisdom - there's thought here, individual thought - which is not all that common in these kinds of pieces. In paging through I find so many things that are interesting - for example, talking about Donny McCaslin in 1986!

I look forward to digging in this weekend.

Thanks Larry!

Mike

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Thank you, Mike. I'm especially pleased that you like the way things are organized.

But dig what my horoscope said yesterday (I'm not kidding): "Today is a 6 [out of 10]. Finally the moment you are worried about is here at last. Your work's being observed by somebody you admire."

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Well, I read most of the Trib and DB stuff as it was published but look forward to the new context - both Larry's and mine.

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BTW, Larry got something close to death threats (if not the real deal) for some of the stuff he wrote in the Trib.

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it would be a great way for me to get an autographed copy if you came to the flagship Borders here in Ann Arbor and did a reading!! Either way I'm getting this book by Christmas

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Yeah, those threats -- in response to two different pieces from the mid-'80s, one called "The Death of Jazz" (essentially about the burgeoning jazz neo-con movement, but the title [my editor's, not mine] really freaked people out), the other a mostly negative piece about Bill Evans -- were kind of funny. At least as I recall things, it was the Evans piece that inspired much more ire. Somebody told me that pianist John Campbell (a good player) wanted a piece of me, and I was in a record store when I overheard bassist Mike Arnapol (I think he's now with Patricia Barber or was at one time) say to someone that what I'd written about Evans made him so mad that he wanted to kill me. I went up to him, introduced myself (we'd never met, but I knew who he was), and after a while we agreed to disagree. (Arnapol, while very angry, didn't strike me as a Mingus-type personality; otherwise I probably wouldn't have done that.)

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BTW, Larry got something close to death threats (if not the real deal) for some of the stuff he wrote in the Trib.

I didn't know Crouch read the Trib. :g

The only person who threatened my life for something I wrote was Frank Kofsky--a real nut case.

Edited by Christiern

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It was truly ridiculous. In a review that appeared in Stereo Review, I noted that I had not previously heard of the bass player on a John Handy trio (may have been a quartet) release.

Kofsky wrote a letter to my editor demanding that I be fired because not knowing that bassist proved how ignorant I was when it came to jazz. I was not fired (I left after 28 years as contributing editor), so Kofsky started bombarding the magazine with outrageous post cards in which he referred to me as "vermin." Mind you, the bassist was a local SF player who had not previously recorded, so I think my "ignorance" was understandable.

ANyway, it finally got so bad that I wrote a letter to the dean of the school where Kofsky taught, and I included copies of his hate mail. In the letter, I suggested that someone of Kofsky's mentality might not be the kind of person one would want to see teaching young people.

They must have spoken to Kofsky, perhaps even fired him, for I now began receiving death threats in the mail from him. He also wrote to various other publications that my Bessie Smith biography was pure fiction. Later, he would use that same book to substantiate a vicious attack on John Hammond!

When I discovered that, on the internet, I dropped him a letter, but he was already dead.

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Mind you, the bassist was a local SF player who had not previously recorded, so I think my "ignorance" was understandable.

Who was the bass player?

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I looked for the review on my archive hard disk, but only found one Handy piece (the wrong one). This means having to go through a couple of decades of the magazine! As I am already doing this, little by very little, it will eventually pop up. The easier way would be to find the correspondence with Kofsky--it's around, somewhere in an un-filed pile!

Anyway, sorry that I can't recall his name.

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A quick check of discographies does not turn up a John Handy trio album - bassists on mid-late 1960s Handy records include: Don Thompson, Albert Stinson, Bruce Gale. My guess would be Gale, on the Projections quintet album from 1968 (the prime period of Kofsky ranting).

Mike

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Thanks, Mike, but this would have to be after 1972, when I joined Stereo Review.

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Maybe Rudy Coleman in '77.

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pre-ordered from Barnes & Noble, $26.60 & free shipping.

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Congratulations!!

Reading your Tristano Mosaic at the moment.

My guess is that anyone who's read Larry's excellent notes on the Tristano set will be motivated to grab the book. I know I am.

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My copy arrived yesterday. I may never get off the john.

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Alankin: Sorry, no index. As I recall, I was looking forward to doing (or trying to do) that

myself (because that was the only way I could be sure it would be done right, and also because I thought it might be fun) but Yale strongly "suggested" that they didn't think the book needed an index -- I think, but I'm not sure, because it would have added too many pages to a book that was at the upper edge of the number of pages it could be and still stand a chance of being profitable from the publisher's perspective. Economies of scale are a big deal for them. For instance, the manuscript had the dedication (to my son) on a separate page, but they moved it to the top of the copyright and credits page to save a page. Perhaps in all this the need to avoid another signature was what was at stake. Looking at the finished book, the lack of an index doesn't bother me now, but then I know what's in the book.

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"My copy arrived yesterday. I may never get off the john."

Good to know it's having its intended effect. From now on, like L. Armstrong, I will sign copies "Swiss Krissly yours..."

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Here's a thought - how about an online index?

If you'd like me to host it on my website, I'd be more than happy to.

Mike

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I think it is a very bad idea to omit an index on a book of this kind. Yale gave me an index, but I had a very hard time creating it, because they were stingy with the pages! It's better than nothing, but I don't understand that kind of economizing.

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"Here's a thought - how about an online index?"

Let me think about that. Time and/or timing might be a problem for two reasons. First, I'm concentrating right now on figuring out what I need to do to support the book from a promotion/sales perspective (if in fact it turns out I can do any of those things and still be me); second, I've got an illness in the family situation (my 92-year-old father) that takes up a lot of time and can explode into urgent action status at any moment. On the other hand, putting together a comprehensive index might be just the right sort of relief from all that. I'll go to the library today and find something on how to do an index (of course I know how a good one works or should, but there must be handy tricks and short cuts).

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Jim,

You wrote:

'My copy arrived yesterday. I may never get off the john'.

Are you there now? Are you viewing organissimo from a laptop?

:P

Bertrand.

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I never knew that books could cause bowel problems... ;)

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