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The richest position in America's musical panorama is that fertile floor occupied through jazz. Scott DeVeaux takes a crucial bankruptcy within the background of jazz—the start of bebop—and indicates how our modern rules of this uniquely American paintings shape stream from that pivotal second. even as, he offers a unprecedented view of the USA within the many years simply ahead of the civil rights movement.

DeVeaux starts with an exam of the Swing period, focusing fairly at the place of African American musicians. He highlights the position performed by way of tenor saxophonist Coleman Hawkins, a "progressive" dedicated to a imaginative and prescient during which black jazz musicians might discover a position on this planet commensurate with their abilities. He then seems on the younger musicians of the early Forties, together with Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie, and Thelonious Monk, and hyperlinks matters in the jazz international to different advancements at the American scene, together with the turmoil in the course of global conflict II and the pervasive racism of the period.

all through, DeVeaux locations musicians in the context in their specialist global, paying shut realization to the demanding situations of constructing a dwelling in addition to of constructing stable track. He indicates that bebop used to be at the same time an inventive circulation, an ideological assertion, and a advertisement phenomenon.

In drawing from the wealthy oral histories residing culture presents, DeVeaux's ebook resonates with the narratives of person lives. whereas The beginning of Bebop is a examine in American cultural background and a severe musical inquiry, it's also a becoming homage to bebop and to people who made it possible.

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