MusicDish e-Journal - January 26, 2020
MusicDish Advertising Network
Search MusicDish e-Journal (Advanced)
Subscribe To MusicDish e-Journal
About | Contact | Advertise | RSS | Submit Article | Submit News | Artist Development | Premium PR Distribution
Mi2N | MusicDish*China | MusicDish Network | MusicDishTV | Urban Music News Network

Book Review: Discovering Great Jazz
Stephen M. Stroff, Newmarket Press
By Matthew S. Robinson
(more articles from this author)
Comment | Email | Print | RSS

Title: Discovering Great Jazz
Author: Stephen M. Stroff
Publisher: Newmarket Press (
Pages:177 pages
Price: $10.95

Defining "jazz" has always been a difficult process. Though it is commonly held to be an (if not the) original American art form, detailing what makes music "jazz" has not been so simple. Differences of opinion abound regarding its sources and, perhaps even more, its seminal performers.

As the former jazz editor for the collector's publication Goldmine, Stephen Stroff has heard many albums in his life that would apparently fit under this amorphous umbrella. With this experience behind him, Stroff has taken the opportunity to authenticate his opinion through the release of this new book, in which he takes fellow fans through his rendition of musical history, marking the crossroads with bold-print signposts and at times under-developed cross-referencing.

Though he claims that personal tastes "played but a small part," the nature of any historical record is the promotion of the author's opinions. Even so, though some of Stroff's artist bios and definitions of jazz terminology (and further his choice of which terms and artists deserve attention) may be questionable (especially to the jazz-educated who may have their own ideas and favorites), it is hard to argue with the occasionally-syncopated chronological organization and the focus Stroff pays to "great legends" like Beiderbecke, Armstrong, Parker, Davis and Coltrane. Jazz is, after all, an exclusive club, and though this apparent fact may be somewhat to the detriment of jazz labels, it is often much to the delight of erudite aficionados.

From the revolutionary recordings of the Original Dixieland Jass (sic) Band to the frightening frontiers of the Marsalis family, Stroff points out the logical points of interest with educated anecdotes and a somewhat comprehensive research. Along the way, he presents some of the "best" recorded examples of the artists discussed (prompting major investment by those who wish to get the full measure of the book) and a random sampling of photographs and "basic jazz terms."

Premising his book as "a refresher course for those who know what happened … and an education for those who don't," Stroff admits to the difficulties of recording and prognosticating on musical history. That said, a bit more attention to terminology and supporting players and bit less editorializing (e.g., claiming Davis's "Bitches Brew" was "a rather sad plea for attention") might have served Stroff better on his difficult and well-trodden road.

Home » Music Spotlight » Book Review: Discovering Great Jazz
Email |Print |Comment |RSS

back | top

MusicDish Advertising Network

Music Spotlight

» Hollywood Heavyweights Launch New Christian Music Label

» Round Hill Music And Zync Sign Madge To Joint Venture

» YG PLUS and Gracenote to Bring K-POP to Fans around the World

» Lithuanian Band Grabs Bronze at the Silk Road Indie Music Festival 2017

» HBC Fall Festival Celebrates 12 years of HBC Fest

Music Spotlight Directory

» [2018-09-16] Live Nation Electronic Asia Inks Deal With Budweiser For Creamfields Festivals; Together, Creamfields And Budweiser Will Focus On Building Entirely New Content For Dedicated Electronic Music Fans Throughout Asia

» [2018-08-23] Andy Ma Appointed Warner Music China CEO; Andy Ma Has Also Been Appointed EVP, Commercial And Business Development For Greater China

» [2018-08-23] IndieOn Connects Music To The Blockchain; IndieOn Is Confident Of Creating A "music Miner" Who Listens More And Grow Their Token Value

» [2018-06-23] The 2018 MIDEM Silk Road International Music Alliance Signing; International Music Industries Signing Of A Mutual Resource Sharing Agreement With Shanghai Conservatory Of Music & The China Records Group

» [2018-06-06] Screen Music Connect To Explore The Music Of Film, Television And Interactive Media; Created By James Hannigan, Award-winning Composer And Game Music Connect Co-founder, Screen Music Connect Builds On The Success Of The Sold-out Game Music Conferences

» [2018-06-05] Fred Casimir To Develop BMG's Global Recordings Business; As Well As Building BMG's European Infrastructure, Casimir Was Instrumental In Developing BMG's Recordings Business

» [2018-06-03] 13 Music Label Sold To MTN; DSN Music Spins Off Record Label To Albuquerque Music Entrepreneur's New Group

» [2018-06-02] CISAC 2018 Annual Report; A Comprehensive Overview Of The Confederation's Work To Serve 4 Million Creators And 239 Authors Societies Across The World

» [2018-06-02] MusicDish Announces A Love Electric 2018 China Tour; The Tour Will Crisscross Through China With 12 Shows In 8 Cities, Including Guangzhou, Dongguan, Zhuhai, Shenzhen, Kunming, Jiaxin, Wuhan And Beijing

» [2018-06-02] Darcus Beese Named President Of Island Records; Renowned U.K. Music Executive To Join Universal Music Group's U.S. Label Leadership

» [2018-05-17] Avant-Garde Label Maybe Noise Launches In Beijing; The Official Launch Will Be On May 26 At Magnet Theater With A Performance Supporting Its First Vinyl Release: Píng Zè

» [2018-05-04] Award-Winning Lithuanian Rock Band Colours Of Bubbles "She Is The Darkness" 2018 China Tour; The Tour Will Kickoff In Shanghai Where The Band Will Represent Lithuania During The Country's Signing To The Silk Road Music Alliance
MusicDish Advertising Network

follow MusicDish on
Follow MusicDish on Twitter

Mi2N Music PR

"Roadie: My Documentary" Stage Dives Into The Circus Life Of Touring Professionals Behind The Ruckus Of Some Of The Most Epic Acts In Music History


Stiff Little Fingers

Micayla De Ette, Star Of The Upcoming Film Hold On, Releases Her New Single And Music Video "Write A Song", Featuring Flavor Flav

AWOLNATION Brings Fans "The Best" / Announces Tour With Andrew McMahon In The Wilderness

Pianist Luo Tingyuan Actively Advocates Cultural Exchanges On Classical And New Music - A Review For 'Young Professionals On Stage' Recital Series

Deadline Looms For Musicians - The 16th Annual Acoustic Music Awards

Websites: Mi2N | MusicDish*China | MusicDish Network | MusicDishTV | Urban Music News Network
Services: Submit Article | Submit News | Submit Video | Artist Development | Premium PR Distribution

Copyright © 1997-2018 MusicDish LLC., all rights reserved.
About MusicDish e-Journal | Contact Us | Advertise | RSS | Internships