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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A thorough documentary of this man's life and career., 11 Jan. 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Mister, I am the Band: Buddy Rich - His Life and Travels (Hardcover)
"Mister, I Am The Band," by Doug Meriwether is a must for serious fans of Buddy Rich or for collectors of Buddy Rich recordings. The book is divided into three sections. The first is a biography of the great jazz drummer. It is written chronologically and in a documentary format. The information is presented factually. It is not written as well as "Traps, The Drum Wonder" by Mel Torme. However, it is a complement to the Torme book. In comparison, where Torme has assembled numerous quotes about Buddy by other drummers, Meriwether has carefully documented quotes about specific situations by associates of Buddy's. Meriwether is careful to list the person being quoted and when/where they are quoting. Where Torme's book seems to focus on the upbeat and positive, Meriwether does not skirt some of the issues such as Buddy's continuing problems with the IRS and his dissatisfaction with record companies. In this writer's opinion, it presents a very honest and factual account of the life of this unique personality. The accounts of his touring and performances leave the reader drained and wondering how could Buddy, particular in his later years, continue to keep up such a grueling schedule and be more on top of things than many of the much younger musicians who worked for him! The second section is a photo album that includes a number of excellent photos that I have not seen published previously. The only criticism regarding the photo section is that it is too short. For the serious Buddy Rich fan or collector, the most valuable section of this book is the complete discography and videography. This secition is well over 150 pages and includes every selection that Buddy played on. Included are the sources, whether it has been released or not, whether it appeared on previous or later releases, all personnel, each tune, and all labels both domestic and international, or whether the recording was private. This is not a book for the casual reader who wants to read a biography with an interesting title. For the true fan of Buddy Rich, the title tells it all and the book is a must. Overall, four stars.
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2 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars overview, 30 Aug. 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Mister, I am the Band: Buddy Rich - His Life and Travels (Hardcover)
I do not yet own this book; although, I did glance at it in a Barnes in Noble in Connecticut. I was most impressed with all of the band organizations Buddy was part of that were listed in the back of the book. Undoubtedly, Rich was the World's Greatest Drummer. In my opinion, there consisted of 4 seperate, distinct drumming classes: The Hierarchy including Buddy, high and far above the rest. The second level included Krupa, not near Rich's calibar, but far above other drummer's of his time. The third level consisted of over great Big Band drummer's: Jo Jones, Sid Catlitt, Ray Mckinley, Alvin Stoller and Chick Webb. These were without a question great all-time drummers, who, in my opinion, attempted to emulate Rich's and almost more often that not, Krupa's style. Then, the last and disturbing drumming sounds consisted of people like Max Roach and Art Blakey. Their playing was as confused as the whole Be-Bop movement encompassing such overally recognized musicians like Gillespie, Parker, and Davis.
I cannot convince myself to this point how people can merely appreciate the sounds of early Gillespie and Parker and at the same rate have people like Goodman, Shaw, James, and Rich??
Thanks for your time.
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Mister, I am the Band: Buddy Rich - His Life and Travels
Mister, I am the Band: Buddy Rich - His Life and Travels by Doug Meriwether (Hardcover - 8 July 1998)
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