Black Music in America: A History Through Its People

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9780064461368: Black Music in America: A History Through Its People

A panoramic history of African-American music chronicles the development of black music, from early slave songs and spirituals to ragtime, jazz, blues, soul, disco, and beyond, through the lives of key black musicians. Reprint. PW. AB.

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From School Library Journal:

Grade 7 Up This history of black music provides an admirable parade of musicians and related personalities as it unfolds through their life stories. Linkages and relationships are smoothly styled to move readers from unknown historical figures to contemporary, highly visible performers. A critical aspect of this history is the deplorable social atmosphere of racism, sexism, and economic deprivation which characterized the earliest times, and to some extent, contemporary times. Despite the searing psychological stresses that were imposed by some derogatory stage names, infamously low wages, and inadequate, if any, guest accomodations, these artists persisted to create an amazing range of music that includes jazz, bebop, vocal, gospel, classical, operatic, and music videos. Despite his clear writing style, Haskins appears ambivalent regarding the implication of segregation in the music business. ``By and large, people involved in the world of music were more interested in music than in skin color'' raises questions when compared to later pages which feature statements such as ``very segregated,'' ``considerable white resistance,'' ``music business was still highly segregated.'' He seems to favor male musicians, as exemplified in the very brief attention given to women including Billie Holliday and Marian Anderson. The basis of Haskins' selections is not explained. Nevertheless, this book will enhance music collections for young readers. Helen E. Williams, University of Maryland, College Park
Copyright 1987 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Publishers Weekly:

Of this comprehensive, photo-illustrated survey, PW said, "Haskins combines historical fact, an individual story, and the elusive mood of the music itself in a lively, often moving book." Ages 12-up.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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