Thelonious Monk: The Life and Times of an American Original (Google eBook)

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Simon and Schuster, Dec 8, 2009 - Biography & Autobiography - 608 pages
36 Reviews
THELONIOUS MONK is the critically acclaimed, gripping saga of an artist’s struggle to “make it” without compromising his musical vision. It is a story that, like its subject, reflects the tidal ebbs and flows of American history in the twentieth century. To his fans, he was the ultimate hipster; to his detractors, he was temperamental, eccentric, taciturn, or childlike. His angular melodies and dissonant harmonies shook the jazz world to its foundations, ushering in the birth of “bebop” and establishing Monk as one of America’s greatest com­posers. Elegantly written and rich with humor and pathos, Thelonious Monk is the definitive work on modern jazz’s most original composer.
  

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Review: Thelonious Monk: The Life and Times of an American Original

User Review  - Marla - Goodreads

I wanted to give this book 3 stars and then realized it would be a reflection of my inadequacies as a reader and not about the book. This is a biography and I can't imagine anyone doing a more ... Read full review

Review: Thelonious Monk: The Life and Times of an American Original

User Review  - Rob Charpentier - Goodreads

In many ways this is an absolutely great book, while in another sense it actually fails so badly that I hesitate to review it at all. Strangely, its saving graces are also precisely the exact same ... Read full review

Contents

My Mother Didnt Want Me to Grow Up in North Carolina
1
What Is Jazz? New York Man
15
I Always Did Want to Play Piano
25
We Played and She Healed
40
Why Cant You Play Music Like the Ink Spots?
51
They Werent Giving Any Lectures
60
Since You Went Away I Missed You
76
Im Trying to See If Its a Hit
89
My Time for Fame Will Come
225
The Police Just Mess with You for Nothing
240
Make Sure Them Tempos Are Right
257
Hell I Did That TwentyFive Years Ago
279
Bebopens Oversteprast
298
Maybe Im a Major Influence
310
Everything Begins Here and Everything Ends Here
327
Thats a Drag Picture Theyre Paintin of Me
345

Dizzy and Bird Did Nothing for Me Musically
104
The George Washington of Bebop
122
Its a Drag to Be in Jail
143
The Un Years
156
France Libre
170
Sometimes I Play Things I Never Heard Myself
178
The Greta Garbo of Jazz
187
As Long as I Can Make a Living
198
People Have Tried to Put Me Off as Being Crazy
214
Sometimes I Dont Feel Like Talking
363
Let Someone Else Create Something New
386
What Do I Have to Do? Play Myself to Death?
409
Postlude
448
A Technical Note on Monks Music
459
Original Compositions by Thelonious Monk
563
Selected Recordings by Thelonious Monk
570
Copyright

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About the author (2009)

Robin D.G. Kelley is a professor of history and American studies and ethnicity at the University of Southern California. From 2003-2006, he was the William B. Ransford Professor of Cultural and Historical Studies at Columbia Univeristy. From 1994-2003, he was a professor of history and Africana Studies at New York University as well the chairman of NYU's history department from 2002-2003.

One of the youngest tenured professors in a full academic discipline--at the age of 32--Kelley has spent most of his career exploring American and African-American history with a particular emphasis on African-American musical culture, including jazz and hip-hop.

Bibliographic information