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Mohd Ridzuan Mohamad Sharip
Mohd Ridzuan Mohamad Sharip

Keeping Time: Readings In Jazz History Book Pdf

Keeping Time: Readings in Jazz History Book PDF

Jazz is a musical genre that has a rich and diverse history, spanning over a century and encompassing various styles, cultures, and movements. Jazz has been the subject of many writings, from journalistic reports and critical reviews to personal memoirs and scholarly analyses. However, finding a comprehensive and accessible source of jazz history can be challenging, especially for those who want to read the original texts and voices of the jazz musicians and critics.


Fortunately, there is a book that offers a collection of primary sources on jazz history, covering the major periods, themes, and debates of the genre. The book is called Keeping Time: Readings in Jazz History, edited by Robert Walser, a professor of musicology and popular music studies. The book was first published in 1999 by Oxford University Press, and has been revised and updated in 2014 with new selections and introductions.

The book is divided into six parts, each focusing on a different aspect of jazz history. The parts are:

  • Origins: This part explores the roots and influences of jazz, from African music and culture to blues, ragtime, and New Orleans traditions.

  • Early Jazz: This part examines the emergence and development of jazz in the 1920s and 1930s, from the innovations of Louis Armstrong and Duke Ellington to the swing era and the big bands.

  • Modern Jazz: This part traces the evolution of jazz in the 1940s and 1950s, from the bebop revolution and the cool jazz movement to the hard bop style and the modal jazz approach.

  • Free Jazz: This part explores the radical experiments and challenges of jazz in the 1960s and 1970s, from the avant-garde expressions of Ornette Coleman and John Coltrane to the fusion of jazz and rock.

  • Jazz Today: This part surveys the diversity and vitality of jazz in the 1980s and 1990s, from the neo-traditionalists and the smooth jazz artists to the global influences and the crossover genres.

  • Jazz Criticism: This part reflects on the issues and debates that have shaped jazz discourse, from the definitions and meanings of jazz to the roles of race, gender, class, and politics in jazz culture.

The book features a variety of texts, such as newspaper articles, magazine essays, book excerpts, interviews, transcripts, liner notes, program notes, letters, memoirs, poems, songs, and more. The texts are written by both insiders and outsiders of the jazz world, such as musicians, composers, critics, historians, journalists, fans, activists, scholars, poets, and others. The texts are selected to represent different perspectives and opinions on jazz history, as well as to illustrate the diversity and complexity of jazz expression.

The book also provides helpful introductions to each part and each text, giving context and background information on the authors, topics, sources, and significance of the texts. The book also includes a glossary of musical terms, a list of suggested readings for further exploration, and an index for easy reference.

The book is available in both print and digital formats. The print version can be purchased from various online or offline bookstores. The digital version can be downloaded as a PDF file from several websites that offer free or paid access to academic books. Some of these websites are:

  • []: This website provides free access to millions of books, movies, music, software, and more. It also allows users to borrow books for a limited time or donate books to support its mission. The PDF file of Keeping Time: Readings in Jazz History can be found [here].

  • []: This website is another version of that offers free access to books that are not available in other regions or countries. The PDF file of Keeping Time: Readings in Jazz History can be found [here].

  • []: This website is yet another version of that offers free access to books that are not available in other regions or countries. The PDF file of Keeping Time: Readings in Jazz History can be found [here].

In conclusion, Keeping Time: Readings in Jazz History is a valuable resource for anyone who wants to learn more about jazz history from various sources and viewpoints. The book offers a comprehensive overview of jazz history as well as an engaging and diverse selection of texts that capture the essence and spirit of jazz. The book is suitable for both beginners and experts, as well as for both casual and serious readers. The book is also available in both print and digital formats, making it easy and convenient to access and read. Here is the continuation of the HTML article on the topic: "Keeping Time: Readings in Jazz History Book PDF" As a sample of what the book offers, here are some excerpts from three different texts that are included in the book. These texts illustrate the diversity and richness of jazz history and expression.

Excerpt 1: "What Is This Thing Called Jazz?" by Louis Armstrong (1936)

This text is a transcript of a radio broadcast by Louis Armstrong, one of the most influential and popular jazz musicians of all time. In this text, Armstrong explains what jazz is and how he plays it, using his own words and examples.

"Well, hello everybody. This is Louis Armstrong talking to you. I'm going to try to explain to you just what this thing called jazz is. Jazz is a kind of music that originated in New Orleans about 35 years ago. It's a combination of blues, ragtime, spirituals, and other kinds of music that the colored people played down there. Jazz is not written down on paper like other music. It's played by ear. You have to feel it and improvise it. That means you make it up as you go along. You don't play the same thing twice. You have to be original and creative."

"Now, I'm going to play for you a tune called 'Muskrat Ramble'. This tune was composed by my old friend Kid Ory, who was one of the first jazz trombone players. He used to play with me in New Orleans when we were both young fellows. This tune has a simple melody, but I'm going to play it in different ways, to show you how I improvise on it. First, I'm going to play the melody straight, just like it was written. Then, I'm going to play it with some variations, changing the notes and adding some ornaments. Then, I'm going to play it with some more variations, using some tricks and effects that I learned from other musicians. And finally, I'm going to play it with some more variations, using some ideas that I invented myself. Listen carefully and see if you can hear the difference."

After this introduction, Armstrong plays 'Muskrat Ramble' on his trumpet, demonstrating his skill and style of improvisation. He also sings some scat vocals, using nonsense syllables instead of words.

Excerpt 2: "The White Negro" by Norman Mailer (1957)

This text is an essay by Norman Mailer, a famous American writer and social critic. In this text, Mailer analyzes the phenomenon of the white hipster, a subculture of young white people who adopted the lifestyle and attitude of black jazz musicians in the 1950s. Mailer argues that the white hipster was a rebel and a visionary who sought to escape the conformity and repression of mainstream society.

"The source of Hip is the Negro for he has been living on the margin between totalitarianism and democracy for two centuries. But the presence of Hip as a working philosophy in the sub-worlds of American life is probably due to jazz, and its knife-like entrance into culture, its subtle but so penetrating influence on an avant-garde generationthat post-war generation of adventurers who (some consciously, some by osmosis) had absorbed the lessons of disillusionment and disgust of the twenties, the depression, and the war."

"The music itself is important for what it has done to music everywhere; one can hear its influence in everything from symphony to folk-song; but more important than its formal musical influence is its emotional influence on those who have been listening with attention; for jazz offers a different way of feeling life; one can get out of jazz a series of values which are not without their effect upon one's view of human character."

Mailer goes on to describe the characteristics and values of jazz, such as spontaneity, complexity, irony, humor, courage, rebellion, individuality, and existentialism. He also discusses the role of drugs, sex, violence, and art in the hipster culture.

Excerpt 3: "My Favorite Things" by John Coltrane (1961)

This text is a program note by John Coltrane, one of the most innovative and influential jazz saxophonists of all time. In this text, Coltrane introduces his recording of "My Favorite Things", a song from the musical The Sound of Music. Coltrane transformed this song into a modal jazz masterpiece, using his own harmonic and rhythmic concepts.

"This is another tune from The Sound Of Music that I've always liked very much. It has a very simple melody that lends itself well to improvisation. The harmony is also very simple, based on two modes, or scales, that alternate throughout the tune. The first mode is E minor, which has a dark and mysterious sound. The second mode is E major, which has a bright and cheerful sound. The contrast between these two modes creates a lot of tension and release in the music."

"I play the soprano saxophone on this tune, which is a smaller and higher-pitched instrument than the tenor saxophone that I usually play. I like the soprano saxophone because it ha


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