Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
Hardbopjazz

I need a good jazz book to read.

107 posts in this topic

[subliminal=]

Buy more copies. Buy more copies.

[/subliminal]

Hey! Thanks for the support - be sure to let me know what you think about it.

Mike

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ross Russell's book is interesting but far too fictional to be taken seriously by any scholar or historian. He knew Bird well and I have often wondered why he felt a need to embellish.

So far, IMO, there is no definitive Parker bio, but there are more reliable sources out there. Stanley Crouch has allegedly been working on a Parker bio for a very long time, but--based on his previous writings--I don't expect it to prove worth the wait. Let's see, he may surprise us all.

I enjoyed Ross Russell's Bird Lives although it is one of those books that (like Miles' autobiography) ought to be taken with a hefty dollop of salt. Pulp fiction with saxophones but entertaining nonetheless.

The great thing about these threads is being reminded of things you meant to get round to. I've just dug out Scott DeVeaux's book The Birth of Bebop: A Social and Musical History. I was totally absorbed by it on reading it about five years ago and I think it's due for a re-read.

please don't advocate for Russell - it is a complete work of fiction - I knew a few musicians mentioned in that book and they, without exception,  held it in nothing but contempt -

how about some specifics folks, where russell's "fiction" varies from the "facts?"

:)

how about some specifics folks, where russell's "fiction" varies from the "facts?"

:)

well?

c'mon guys! you talk about russell fictionalizing bird's story but you don't give me any specifics!!! how am i supposed to know what to believe and what not to believe??!!! :wacko:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Cool it, Brighty.

Perhaps you don't realize how insistent you are. Look it up yourself. We've got better things to do with OUR TIME than to search-n-dissect Russell's hazy yarns to save YOUR TIME.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Damn, Bright Moments...he'll never invite us over for drinks and let us paw through his record collection now! :angry:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Cool it, Brighty.

Perhaps you don't realize how insistent you are.  Look it up yourself.  We've got better things to do with OUR TIME than to search-n-dissect Russell's hazy yarns to save YOUR TIME.

Yeah, I'm sure everyone is busy. But one does begin to wonder whether Russell is more disliked than inaccurate.

--eric

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Cool it, Brighty.

Perhaps you don't realize how insistent you are.  Look it up yourself.  We've got better things to do with OUR TIME than to search-n-dissect Russell's hazy yarns to save YOUR TIME.

hey bill that is some serious hostility!! i guess you never heard that if you don't have something nice to say . . . oh never mind.

i was looking to continue a discussion, not pick a fight!

:blink:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

just found this - the Russell is crap - events are simply MADE UP - I have this from: Howard McGhee, AL Haig, Tommy Potter, Curley Russell, Dan Morgenstern (they were either there or knew the participants) - is that good enough?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sorry, "rat," but I know of no knowledgeable person who has read Ross' book and not concurred with the assessments expressed in this thread. Ross Russell was a likable guy--it is his book that is being discussed here and it is his book that is universally criticized. Suggesting that anyone here harbors a dislike for Ross is the kind of nonsense we hear regularly from Wynton admirers who simply cannot fathom how anyone could find fault with his music without having some kind of hate agenda.

Ross Russell's book is an interesting read, but it is too fictional to be taken seriously by scholars or Bird fans who seek the truth. One might say that the book is a Schaap-ized version of Charlie Parker's life (although Schaap wasn't around when it was written). Too bad, because Ross relationship with Bird was more than a passing acquaintance, and he had the distinct advantage of being able to speak directly to many who knew and worked with Bird.

As for pointing out the fictionalized parts of the book, BM, it is really asking too much in this case, for this is a biography that is only loosely based on actual events and people.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

reading my post above, it sounds unnecessarily hostile - I just meant to reiterate that I knew a fair amount of musicians who participated in events supposedly described by Russell, and they, to a man, told me many things he described simply did not occur -

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I took a long drive with Curley Russell, must have been around 1978, and the subject of this book came up - Curley was much amused by the book, had been there for much of the beginnings of bebop, and regarded it as complete fiction - AL Haig felt exactly the same way -

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Okay, I'm totally confused now. Is this Russell book a novel or a biography? You've all lost me somewhere along the way...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Russell claims it is a bio of Charlie Parker - allegedly non-fiction -

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It purports to be a biography and a reader with little or no knowledge of Parker and the jazz scene might easily be fooled into believing that. This is how myths are started.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Okay; I was misinformed...I had assumed it was one of those "fictionalized biographies", a bizarre if somewhat confusing genre. Sort of like "alternate histories".

Then again, I suppose it is, isn't it! :g

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Chris - kind of amusing to call Bird Lives "Schaap-ized" because Phil is very outspoken about the flaws in the book. Pot, kettle, black, I guess.

Mike

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I guess he doesn't like it when the fantasies are someone else's. :g

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Either way he's full of Schaap.

The BEST defense I've heard of Russell is that his book captures what the scene must have felt like during that time. This from someone who wasn't there.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Jazz recommendation books are fun to read sometimes, although some of the author's opinions are bizzare... :crazy:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I believe the last one I read gave Miles, Trane, Monk, Bird, etc props, (naturally) and also praised Kenny G. :bad:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

actually, Phil doesn't like anyone else making up stuff when he has plenty of new things to tell us -

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

so where do i go for the "real" story?

:(

The music?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

so where do i go for the "real" story?

:(

The music?

i've got the music (and love it) but i really want to know about the people behind the music. i don't want fiction, i want to know about their REAL lives.

:(

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

actually, Phil doesn't like anyone else making up stuff when he has plenty of new things to tell us -

and he always has new things, doesn't he? :bad:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"The Best of Jackson Payne" by Jack Fuller.

Up over and out.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in



Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.