Digging: The Afro-American Soul of American Classical Music

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University of California Press, May 26, 2009 - Music - 436 pages
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For almost half a century, Amiri Baraka has ranked among the most important commentators on African American music and culture. In this brilliant assemblage of his writings on music, the first such collection in nearly twenty years, Baraka blends autobiography, history, musical analysis, and political commentary to recall the sounds, people, times, and places he's encountered. As in his earlier classics, Blues People and Black Music, Baraka offers essays on the famous—Max Roach, Charlie Parker, Miles Davis, John Coltrane—and on those whose names are known mainly by jazz aficionados—Alan Shorter, Jon Jang, and Malachi Thompson. Baraka's literary style, with its deep roots in poetry, makes palpable his love and respect for his jazz musician friends. His energy and enthusiasm show us again how much Coltrane, Albert Ayler, and the others he lovingly considers mattered. He brings home to us how music itself matters, and how musicians carry and extend that knowledge from generation to generation, providing us, their listeners, with a sense of meaning and belonging.
 

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Digging: the Afro-American soul of American classical music

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Poet, playwright, and music critic Baraka (Blues People: Negro Music in White America) delivers another critical work on America's classical music, jazz, in his almost lyrical style of writing ... Read full review

Contents

1 GriotDjali
5
2 Miles Later
9
3 The Blues Aesthetic and the Black Aesthetic
19
4 Blues People
28
5 Rhythm
33
6 The American Popular Song
38
7 Blues Line
47
8 Cosby and the Music
49
44 Fred
265
45 Fred Hopkins Memorial
267
46 Duke Ellington
270
47 Duke Was a Very Great Pianist
276
48 Blind Tom
277
49 Don Pullen Leaves Us
280
50 Black History Month Rediscovers the Music in New York City
286
51 Black History Month Rediscovers the Music Part 2
289

9 Nina Returns
56
10 Jazz Criticim and Its Effect on the Music
72
11 Not the Boss
86
12 Wynton Marsalis
88
13 The International Business of Jazz and the Need for the Cooperative and Collective SelfDevelopment of an International Peoples Culture
91
14 Newarks Coast and the Hidden Legacy of Urban Culture
101
15 Black Music as a Force for Social Change
106
16 What You Mean Du Wop?
110
17 Classic American Music
117
18 Singers and the Music
119
19 Newarks Influence on American Music
124
20 Ritual and Performance
133
21 Bopera Theory
140
22 Jazz and the White Critic
145
23 Random Notes on the Last Decade
155
GREAT MUSICIANS
157
24 Panthalassa
159
25 When Miles Split
166
26 David Murray Mings Samba
170
27 David Murray Fo Deuk Revue
173
28 David Murray Addenda to a Concert
176
29 On Reissuing Trane
178
30 John Coltrane
192
31 Some Memories of Alan Shorter
195
32 High Art
198
33 Max Roach at the Iridium
208
34 Paris Max
210
35 The Great Max Roach
214
36 Billie Holiday
219
37 The High Priest of BeBop
222
38 Eric Dolphy
236
39 Jackie Mc
237
40 It Aint about You
240
41 You Ever Hear Albert Ayler?
242
42 Alberts Will
259
43 Sassy Was Definitely Not the Avon Lady
261
52 Wonderful Stevie
292
53 Abbey Lincoln
295
54 Four Tough GoodByes
304
NOTES REVIEWS and OBSERVATIONS
311
55 Impulse Sampler Act on Impulse
313
56 Ralph Peterson
316
57 Andrew Cyrille Good to Go
318
58 Odean Pope Saxophone Choir Epitome
321
59 Ravi Coltrane Moving Pictures
323
60 Donal Fox and David Murray Ugly Beauty
326
61 Tyrone Jefferson Connections
331
62 James Moody
334
63 Barry Harris
338
64 Pharoah Sanders Shukuru
340
65 Don PullenGeorge Adams Quartet Breakthrough
344
66 Von and Chico Freeman Freeman and Freeman
349
67 Alan Shorter Orgasm
352
68 The Work Man
356
69 Roscoe Mitchell and the Note Factory
360
70 Jimmy Scott But Beautiful
364
71 Malachi Thompson Talking Horns
366
72 The Nexus Orchestra Seize the Time
368
73 Three Fresh Ticklers
370
74 Rodney Kendrick Last Chance for Common Sense
373
75 Jazz Times Review Multiple Artists
375
76 More Young Bloods to the Rescue
378
77 Vijay Iyer Memorophilia
381
78 TriFactor If You Believe
384
79 Live Lessons
387
80 New York Art Quintet
394
81 Peter Brotzmann Nipples and Joe McPhee Nation Time
398
82 Jon Jang and David Murray River of Life
401
83 Trio Three Encounter
404
84 Jackie McComing and Going
407
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About the author (2009)

Amiri Baraka (formerly LeRoi Jones) is a writer and critic, the poet laureate of New Jersey, and Professor Emeritus of the State University of New York, Stony Brook. His many books include Blues People, Black Music, and The Music.

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