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Re: [RedHotJazz] Jelly's Blues

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  • john schott
    Regarding the Reich and Gaines Morton bio: The American writer and guitarist Duck Baker really ripped the book in a review and author exchange published, I
    Message 1 of 2 , Aug 13, 2007
      Regarding the Reich and Gaines Morton bio: The American writer and guitarist
      Duck Baker really ripped the book in a review and author exchange published,
      I believe, in Jazz Times (possibly Coda?). Listed many factual errors,
      errors of interpretation, as well as seeming ignorance of existing
      scholarship on Morton.

      Still, I have the book and consult it from time to time. Bob Mielke, the
      venerable trombonist, told me he greatly appreciated the chapter on Chicago
      and the Melrose scene in the teens and twenties.

      The world awaits a book that could weave together recent Morton scholarship
      (Gushee, Meddings, etc.), archival research (Russell, Hogan archives, etc.),
      vaudville/show business history, a nuanced account of shifting American
      racial identities, an balanced evaluation of Lomax, and - too much to hope
      for? - a great ear for the MUSIC.

      Morton is THE great story. The story has a shitty ending, true, and Morton
      was often a pretty unlikable guy - read those anti-Semitic letters to Carew,
      circa 1939! - do Reich and Gaines even mention these? - but the span of his
      life, and the great visionary music, are "beyond comparison."

      John Schott
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