Top critical review
One person found this helpful
Crams in a lot of information
on 14 April 2013
I enjoyed reading this book and found it imformative, having just starting exploring jazz music. It is easy to read but can be repetative, as it assumes that a reader may dip into particular chapters, whereas I read it cover to cover. It covers the broad history of jazz and seems to include all the major players. There are a couple of unexpected but interesting sections including how to sus out a jazz gig and advice on setting up a jazz band. Also some really weird ones, including how to hold a jazz dinner party and talking jazz to your pretentious friends! It doesn't include much on music theory. There is a section on the blues, which I found confusing eventhough I can play the blues and have studied music.
It was published in 2006, so is out of date regarding current musicians/developments and it is focused on USA (for obvious reasons). But is a useful broad introduction to the development of jazz through the 20th century.