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The freedom principle: Jazz after 1958

Litweiler, John

ISBN 10: 0688059368 / ISBN 13: 9780688059361
Published by Quill, 1984
Used Condition: Very Good Soft cover
From Open Books (Chicago, IL, U.S.A.)

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Bibliographic Details

Title: The freedom principle: Jazz after 1958

Publisher: Quill

Publication Date: 1984

Binding: Paperback

Book Condition:Very Good

About this title

Synopsis:

Ornette Coleman's discovery some thirty years ago that his band's music was indeed a "free thing" marked the beginning of a revolution in jazz. From the early free-form experiments, Coleman's dancing blues, and John Coltrane's saxophone cries and sheets of sound, to the brittle, melancholy modes of Miles Davis, vibrant, sophisticated new jazz idioms proliferated. In this critical and historical survey of today's jazz, noted critic John Litweiler traces the evolution of the new music through such artists as Coleman, Coltrane, Davis, Cecil Taylor, Eric Dolphy, Sun Ra, Albert Ayler, Anthony Braxton, and others. He also addresses questions such as: Is Free jazz a rejection of the jazz tradition? Are European folk classical musics altering this essentially Afro-American art? Do the principles of Free jazz provide real emotional liberation for the creative musician? This is a solid, informed guide—for new jazz fans and serious listeners alike—to what has, in many ways, been the most productive and most controversial period in the history of jazz.

Review:

"The quest for freedom with a small f," writes John Litweiler, "appears at the very beginning of jazz and reappears at every growing point in the music's history." But Litweiler's book is about the upper-case variety of freedom--the Free jazz pioneered in the late 1950s by the likes of Ornette Coleman, John Coltrane, Cecil Taylor, Albert Ayler, Anthony Braxton, and Eric Dolphy. The author, who has also written a fine biography of Coleman, traces the rise and multiple ramifications of this firebreathing music. His judgements have held up superbly since the book's original 1985 publication, and his thumbnail portraits and fine-tuned analyses make this an essential volume.

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